^^^Yes, you should respond. Your interviewer probably will let Cornell know that you didn't respond and it may appear that you are not interested (or rude). It really is no big deal. They are alumni of Cornell, and they just want to tell you about their school. They are not going to ask you anything you don't know.
Strictly speaking, they're information sessions designed to provide you with a general overview of Cornell and address any questions you might have about the school. Unlike formal interviews, the info sessions aren't evaluative in nature. Though they're unlikely to save an application, a good word from an alum certainly can't hurt.
Those of you who have been contacted for interviews: did you get a call or an email? My S is terrible about checking email and I have some concerns. We are in a pretty alumni-dense area, but there are also a lot of applicants from around here (typically 45-50 from our HS grad class of 400 alone). They must have to prioritize applicants then, no?
Thank you for your interest in Cornell. I am a member of the Cornell Alumni Admissions Ambassador Network (CAAAN). CAAAN is a group of Cornell Alumni who volunteer to speak with prospective students about Cornell and the admissions process. I graduated in 1979 but have a daughter who graduated in 2009 and another who graduated in 2011 so am still pretty familiar with the school.
If you have any questions or would like to discuss the admissions process or school, please send me an e-mail or give me a call. If I am not there please leave a message with a couple good times to call.
Is this the interview people are talking about? It doesn't seem like an interview request.
Yes, that's an interview request. Cornell interviews are typically with alumni and they are 'informational' -- although I believe the alum sends a brief note back to Cornell after the interview. My son was ED (class of 2016) and received a similar email about the interview right about this time last year. His interviewer was a local Cornell alum with kids in his high school. They talked for about an hour at a local coffee shop. It was a very positive and relaxed.
So I guess we are finding out our decisions December 13th at 5 pm! I saw the website posted in another Cornell thread but it was taken down, it was the website where you log in to see your decision and it said the 13th we could see our decisions.
I had an interview/portfolio review in mid October with an art alum. I know it's a bit different for me, but overall it went great and it lasted an hour as well. I would definitely do an interview if offered one, it would probably only help. As they say, just be yourself!
Out of curiosity, I know that for architecture interviews count for a lot, do art interviews count about as much? I've heard it's 1/3 each for academics, portfolio and interview.