International Financial Aid Presentation
Dean Joy St. John, the Dean of Admission and Financial Aid, presented information on Wellesley’s international student aid and debriefed the Committee on the Admission and Financial Aid’s most recent report. According to Dean St. John, the school is currently only able to offer need blind admission to domestic students, due to a strict cap on the amount of international financial aid the school can afford to give out. Currently, between ¼ and ⅓ of international students receive aid. As a result of this policy, the admissions rate for international students applying is less than 10%, or about half of the overall admissions rate. The only schools currently offering need blind admission for international students are Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, all of which have much larger endowments than Wellesley; and Amherst College, which in addition to having a significantly smaller student body has a greater endowment as well. Dean St. John explained that in order for international students to qualify for aid, they must apply at the time of admission. Additionally, she mentioned that if a student is admitted with aid and they don’t believe that the aid reward meets their calculated need, then they can reach out to Financial Services in an attempt to negotiate the amount. However, whatever aid given at the time a student accepts their admission offer remains the same for all four years. Even so, if something occurs in an international student’s life that drastically affects their financial situation they can speak with student financial services, though it won’t be considered as a formal appeal.
Report by the Committee on Admission and Financial Aid
Dean St. John also presented on the conclusion reached by the Committee on Admission and Financial Aid, which has been investigating eight questions regarding changes to financial aid award policy. The committee initially took up this inquiry during the 2017-2018 school year after SLAP, the Student Labor Action Project, asked them to eliminate the student contribution portion of a student’s financial aid package, and a faculty member requested the school do more to reach out to low and middle income families. According to Dean St. John, after nearly a year and a half of deliberation, the committee determined that the school did not have the resources to enhance the current financial aid system. However, the committee recommended two main priorities for the college to invest in if they decide to pursue any reform: 1) Embrace a middle income initiative that would reduce the parent contributions for families with incomes between $60,000 and $150,000; and 2) Increasing the person expense and travel budget aspects of financial aid awards.
Senate Office Hours
Diana Lam ’20, College Government President (CGP), announced that senate office hours will now be held Monday through Thursday from 4 P.M. to 6 P.M. in the Lulu Resource Room. These hours are open to all Wellesley students.
Ad- Hoc Committee on Class Google Groups
SPEC chair Daniella Limbania ’21, announced the creation of an Ad-Hoc student committee focused on discussing ways to reform the current Google group system that allows everyone to send emails to any student on campus. The group is currently exploring questions such as: 1) Who should have permanent access to Google groups? 2) Under what circumstances should individual students have access to emails? 3) Who decides or moderates what is sent out? And 4) How will student activism work through this process? According to Limbania, the committee is attempting to consolidate student input and submit it to Dean Horton as a written memo. Additionally, the committee is currently in the process of planning a town hall for students to voice their opinions on suggested solutions, which is tentatively scheduled for Nov. 6.