The Class of 2025 received their Regular Decision acceptances on Saturday, March 20. They join Early Decision I and II enrollees to join a total of around 1267 admitted students. Sixteen percent of the almost 8,000 prospective students, the largest applicant pool the College has ever received, were admitted to Wellesley this year. Those who found out in March have until May 3 to decide whether to enroll. In response to pandemic circumstances, Wellesley modified its application process to eliminate the Early Evaluation option for this admissions cycle.
Admitted students mentioned a diverse range of qualities that drew them to Wellesley. One frequently mentioned benefit was the supportive environments of historically women’s colleges.
“What I’m most excited for, especially about women’s colleges, is that I want to be recognized for my identity,” accepted student Eryn Peritz said. “I want to be celebrated as a woman, a woman of color and someone who is also a part of the LGBT[Q+] community.”
Peritz noted that Wellesley’s diversity would be a welcome change from her hometown of Rockville Centre, New York. She hopes to major in art history, and she is also interested in East Asian studies. Apart from academics, she would like to be involved in organizations related to Asian identities, and she wants to explore Acorns House, the societies and the Davis Museum.
Alaina Fox, another accepted student, also stressed the importance of women-centered education. After a bad experience in her English class, in which she had a male teacher and mostly male students, she began looking at historically women’s colleges.
“The amount of mansplaining that went on, all of the condescending remarks … We read books and students were slut-shaming characters and such, and it was openly encouraged,” Fox said. “Then[,] that summer, I went to a law camp. … Just by chance, all of the students were women, and our teacher was also a woman, and that environment was just so encouraging and supportive.”
Another factor that drew Fox and other students to Wellesley was the academic rigor and a strong sense of community.
“Academic rigor is really important to me, but living in Silicon Valley, the hypercompetitive-ness can get a little extreme,” Fox said. “I got the impression that Wellesley was a collaborative environment.”
While Fox already knew that Wellesley was her top choice before this year, many high school seniors are struggling to choose colleges during a pandemic that has caused financial and mental stress, especially since visiting schools has been difficult and almost impossible.
“Deciding where to commit is really difficult because I haven’t really gone on college tours, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to make a decision I’m fully comfortable with without having seen a college campus,” accepted student Aima Ali said.
Ali, who lives in New York City, plans to drive through several campuses, including Wellesley, over her spring break. Although making a decision is harder, she was able to apply to 26 schools and attend more admissions events using her extra free time gained during quarantine, which would not have been as feasible normally. Other accepted students echoed this sentiment.
“Through their student-to-student chats and some of their information sessions and their virtual tours, I feel like I was able to get to know Wellesley, I would say, pretty intimately,” Peritz said.
Stephanie Amaya, another accepted student, also changed her application plans because of COVID. Because SAT dates were canceled, she was unable to retake the exam after her first time, which was intended to be a practice round. Some colleges, including Wellesley, removed their SAT requirement because of the pandemic, but she had to apply to others with her practice score. The colleges that did not change their testing policies included the University of Florida and Florida State University, the main state schools where she lives in Miami. This unforeseen complication led Amaya to look farther afield to out-of-state colleges, such as Wellesley.
“I was like, ‘You know what, those schools that you actually did want to apply to that you thought were too far from home or you thought you wouldn’t be able to get in, just do it,’” Amaya said.
Amaya hopes to further her passion for athletics and languages at Wellesley, as she has studied Italian for the past seven years at her international charter high school. She is excited about the diversity at Wellesley and the differences between Florida and Massachusetts.
“Getting a roommate for some people is strange and weird, but I’m really excited to see who I actually get paired up with,” Amaya said. “Also, in Miami I don’t know anything about seasons, so I think that going to Massachusetts, I’m going to be able to experience the seasons.”
As Amaya and other accepted students decide whether to join the Green Class of 2025, members of the current Green Class reflect on their time at Wellesley and offer advice to incoming first-years.
“I think I was lucky in that I came in and found a community right away,” Angela Liu ’21 said. “As the years have gone on … I’ve definitely realized that there are some issues that Wellesley has that need to be fixed like all colleges do … but ultimately I was super glad that I ended up coming here.”
Liu is a mathematics major and philosophy minor, and she plans to go to law school at Duke University after graduating. Initially, she was unsure whether to apply for masters programs in mathematics or law school, but Wellesley helped her make this decision.
“I’m not sure if I would’ve made the same decision if I had ended up at a different school,” Liu said. “I think at Wellesley, there’s a large emphasis on being involved in your own community … Math is very cool and I love to study it, but law school and practicing law is how I would be able to influence more people.”
She advises incoming first-years to take advantage of as many opportunities as they can and not to be afraid of rejection. According to Liu, student organizations are a valuable way to meet new friends, especially since she has noticed that most students do not keep their exact same friend group from their first year.
“It’s really just a continuous process of meeting new people and finding your community,” Liu said.
Julian Krive ’21 also emphasized the importance of being proactive when it comes to adjusting to college life.
“Invest in a good planner, and then get your Google Calendar set up so you can organize your time really well,” Krive said. “It’s different from high school, where sometimes you can get away with doing a last-minute assignment and things turn out all right.”
Krive is a classics major who will be pursuing a masters in Ancient Near East studies at the University of Cambridge after graduation. She also studied abroad at Cambridge her junior year, where she met Preeti Kate, a British medical student. Kate and Krive started Preeti and Julian, a YouTube channel where Kate talks about her experience studying medicine at Cambridge and Krive talks about Wellesley. Krive is currently in the process of making a video about advice for first-years because a student requested it.
“I’m always excited to make videos about Wellesley-specific advice because when I was a first-year, I was looking for Wellesley-specific content and I didn’t necessarily find it outside of the admissions office,” Krive said.
Admitted students have less than a month to decide whether to commit to Wellesley, and the fall experience remains subject to the progression of the pandemic.
Nevertheless, prospective students share excitement about moving onto college, especially after having almost half of their high school career disrupted due to the pandemic.
“I’m just really excited to take classes I’m interested in, to have that flexibility to kind of do whatever I want … and to meet other people that are interested in the same kinds of things that I’m interested in,” Ali said. “I think that would be really exciting.”