Application Instructions for First-Year Candidates
Pomona College accepts applications for fall entrance only. January 8 is the regular decision deadline and the deadline for all credentials other than senior-year midterm grades. Midterm grades are due by February 15. Candidates are responsible for submitting all items on time and are given access to an online portal where they can check on the completion of their application. Candidates for first-year admission will be notified of the Admissions Committee’s decisions by April 1.
The required credentials are:
- Application. Pomona accepts the Coalition Application, the Common Application and the QuestBridge Application.
- One-time, non-refundable application fee or fee waiver. A $70 non-refundable application fee covers a small portion of the costs of processing applications. If the fee is a financial hardship, please consult the “Fee Waiver” section of the Common Application “Profile.” If you indicate that you satisfy one of those criteria, you will become automatically eligible for an online fee waiver for each school to which you apply. The Common Application will email your school counselor, who will be required to submit a form confirming your eligibility for a fee waiver. Please note that Pomona’s ID for the counselor’s form is 4607. Alternately, those applying through the Coalition Application may use the Coalition Fee Waiver. Additionally, Pomona accepts the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) fee waiver form or a letter from your counselor, written on school letterhead, that directly requests a fee waiver for you. Please have your counselor email the NACAC form or the counselor letter directly to the Office of Admissions.
- School Report and Counselor Recommendation. These should be submitted by the student’s counselor. Please note that we do not release an admissions decision without a completed disciplinary history from a school administrator. If the school report’s disciplinary history questions are left blank or answered with “school policy prevents me from responding,” we will not release an admissions decision.
- Two Academic Letters of Recommendation. Confidential evaluations from two classroom teachers in core academic subjects (English, foreign languages, math, science or social sciences) should be uploaded as part of the application or emailed directly to the Office of Admissions. We suggest these recommendations be sent from teachers whose classes the applicant took during junior or senior year. A letter from a teacher of an elective subject (e.g., music, art, journalism, etc.) can serve as an additional, optional recommendation.
- Official Transcript(s) of High School Record to Date. Candidates must submit a transcript of all work through the junior year and, as soon as grades are available, a transcript complete through the first semester or trimester of the senior year. It should include an interpretation of the grading system and a clear designation of honors, International Baccalaureate or Advanced Placement courses. Transcripts for any college courses taken in high school may be required upon admission if these courses and grades are not on the high school transcript. Admission offers are made with the provision that the applicant’s academic performance continues to be as strong after the offer of admission as it was to that date. A final transcript confirming graduation and good standing at the conclusion of the school year is required for enrollment.
- Standardized Test Scores. Results of either the SAT Reasoning (administered by the College Board) or ACT (administered by ACT, Inc.) tests are optional for applicants for fall 2021 entry. Under this one-year policy, students may still choose to self-report test scores on their applications. If questioning whether to self-report test scores, students are encouraged to decide how best to present themselves to the Admissions Committee and whether—or not—their standardized test results accurately reflect their academic ability and potential. For those who elect to self-report them, test scores will be reviewed holistically, in the context of other application materials and indicators of academic ability and promise, and an official score report will be required upon admission. If there is a discrepancy between self-reported scores and official scores, the offer of admission may be withdrawn. In the absence of standardized test scores, the Office of Admissions will continue to place emphasis on academic achievement, leadership and extracurricular activities, essays, and letters of recommendation from teachers and counselors.
- Interviews. We offer off-campus alumni interviews to seniors beginning in late August and up to December 1. We do not track demonstrated interest in the application process, so interviews are entirely optional. To schedule an alumni interview, please register online at least three weeks in advance on the Admissions section of the Pomona College website. Please be aware that our alumni network does not extend to every corner of the country or world, and we cannot fulfill every interview request. International applicants may interview with an alumni interviewer or a private service. Third-party interviews are not conducted by Pomona staff or alumni, so, unfortunately, the interviewer cannot answer specific questions about Pomona College. Since there may be a cost involved for third-party interview services, interviews are not required. Fee waivers are also available by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. We accept interviews through InitialView and Duolingo. The Duolingo English Test combines an English proficiency test with a video interview and can be completed any time and place where web access is available. Those attending high school in the U.S. should schedule an alumni interview in the U.S.
- Arts Supplements. The Admissions Committee encourages students to submit evidence of their special talents in the area of dance, music, theatre or visual art. Additional information about arts supplements can be found on the Admissions section of the Pomona College website.