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New Students Guidebook

Important Considerations

The things to do before you arrive items below are mandatory. However, there are a few things we strongly encourage you to consider before coming to campus.

Welcome to Pomona!

We are eagerly anticipating your arrival on campus.

Below, you will find a list of Things To Do Before You Arrive along with links to the myPomona portal and important Websites. View information about New Student Orientation.

Student Affairs is here to support you in your transition to Pomona, and you should feel free to contact us with any questions on concerns you may have.

Warm wishes,
Dean Feldblum

Important Dates 2015-2016*

There are a few dates we strongly encourage you to consider before returning to campus:

    August 29 - Residence halls open at 8 a.m. The first meal served on the regular board plan will be brunch.
    September 1 - Classes begin at 8:10 a.m. and Convocation is held in Bridges Hall of Music at 11:00 a.m.
    September  14 - Last day to add a course or change board plan; last day for course fee refunds.
    October 22  - Last day to drop a course.
    TBA  - Last day to choose pass/no credit grading option; last day to sign student promissory notes.
    December 19 - Residence halls close at noon.
    February 12-14 - Family Weekend 2016

*Please refer to the Academic Calendar for the most current information.

We know that you may have a variety of summer plans, so we thought to give you a jumpstart on the process, and provide you with Things To Do Before You Arrive.  You can select the links below for more information or go to the myPomona portal and select the Student Tab. The "Things To Do Before You Arrive" will be listed under the Through the Gates tab at the top of the page.


Things To Do Before You Arrive
Write a Letter to Your Faculty Advisor Deadline: June 15, 2015
Enroll in or Waive out of the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP)
Deadline: July 1, 2015
Complete the Emergency Contact and Supplemental Information Form Deadline: June 15, 2015
Sign Up for an Orientation Adventure Trip! Deadline: July 1, 2015
Send the Office of Admissions your final transcript
Mail to: Pomona College Office of Admissions
333 N. College Way, Claremont, CA 91711
Deadline: July 1, 2015
Sign up for an ID 1 Class (First-year students only)
Please note: First-year students only.
Deadline: TBA
Complete the Physical Exam Form & Counseling Center Survey
Send to: Student Health Services
757 College Way, Claremont, CA 91711
Deadline: August 1, 2015
Take the Online Alcohol Education Class Deadline: Refer to the Portal
Complete your Summer Reading! Deadline: August 21, 2015


Things To Do Before You Arrive

Write a Letter to Your Faculty Advisor

Deadline: June 15, 2015

Pomona prides itself on the fact that its faculty serves as the primary source of advising for students, and the faculty take their advising roles very seriously. During the summer, the Dean of Students Office and the Office of Admissions will assign you an advisor. You will receive your faculty advisor's name when you arrive on campus in August. You may have a very good idea of what your major will be at Pomona. However, your faculty advisor may or may not be matched with you on the basis of these academic interests alone. For example, your advisor may be in a different department than your intended major, but he or she might be from a small town, just like you. Your advisor may have been an athlete in college, and may have a special understanding of your plans to play a sport at Pomona. Or, your advisor may be someone who has a special understanding of another co-curricular activity that interests you.

Your faculty advisor will help you think about your academic program for the year, offer advice on the nature of our curriculum and how to satisfy the Breadth of Study requirements, and talk with you about the academic experience at Pomona. Your advisor is also someone with whom you can share your ideas and plans about college life in general. You should be open and honest with your advisor, and you should keep in contact with him or her throughout the year. This relationship can be one of the most valuable ones you develop at Pomona. To prepare for your first meeting with your advisor, please write a one to two-page letter introducing yourself to your faculty advisor discussing your academic and intellectual goals. In writing your letter, consider your broad academic goals and draft a short-term and long-term academic plan that you will discuss with your advisor during the initial advising session.  Your faculty advisor and the Student Affairs deans will read your letter. The letter helps the deans and advisors become better acquainted with you. Please go to myPomona to submit your letter.

Enroll in or Waive out of the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) of the Claremont Colleges

Deadline: July 1, 2015

Pomona College requires that all students carry health insurance. You may waive out if you have a private insurance policy. If you do not waive out, you will be automatically enrolled in the annual student health insurance plan through the Claremont Colleges.

In the best interest of our students’ health and access to care, we expect that a Pomona College student’s alternative coverage be comparable to the Claremont Colleges’ Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) if you wish to waive out.

Please review your coverage thoroughly to ensure comparable coverage prior to completing the waiver form. You are responsible for all medical expenses resulting from services that are not covered by your health insurance. You may wish to pose the following questions to your family’s health insurance company as you decide whether your policy from home is sufficient:

  • What if you were in a bicycle accident and needed surgery to repair damage to your knee?

  • Would you be covered if you chose to get this surgery near campus or would they only provide coverage if you traveled back home for the surgery?

  • What if you needed to see an allergy specialist or get specialized tests?

  • Could you do so in Claremont?

It is very important that you investigate your home health insurance policy. You might find that it does not cover services that are out of network, and, for example, if your policy is in another state, it may not cover seeing a specialist in California.

Acceptable Comparable Health Insurance Coverage

Refer to the SHIP website at for a complete description of the insurance plan. In order to waive coverage, your plan must meet the following criteria:

  • Deductible of $1000 individual ($2000 family) or less per policy year; and

  • It is domiciled in the United States.

Students not completing the waiver form and providing private medical insurance information by the waiver deadline are automatically enrolled in the Claremont College student insurance plan, and the student’s account will be charged with the current annual student SHIP premium. SHIP fee is reflected on your tuition bill. This years premium rate for undergraduate students is $1,911 for annual coverage. The College further requires that proof of insurance be provided EACH year that you are an enrolled student. If waivers have not been submitted by July 1, 2015 you will be automatically enrolled and the premium amount will be charged to your student account.

Students can access the waiver form through their student portal. If you have any questions about the SHIP plan, please contact the Office of Student Affairs at 909-621-8017 or

Financial Assistance for the Claremont College Student Health Insurance Plan

Pomona College recognizes that the cost of coverage in the Claremont College Student Health Insurance Program (SHIP) may cause financial hardship for some students and their families. For this reason, all students enrolled in SHIP who receive Pomona College financial aid will automatically be packaged with a Pomona Medical Grant to cover half of the cost of the health insurance ($956).  Students may request a loan to cover the second half ($955).  Students not receiving financial aid or any financial aid student requesting a loan, should send an email to the Office of Financial Aid.  A revised letter of financial aid eligibility will be sent to you.  If you later wish to decline your requested loan, please return the letter with “declined” indicated next to the loan or email our office with the request.  Students who are receiving outside scholarships may be eligible to have the second half of the premium covered by the outside scholarship.  This will be determined at the time of notification of the outside award.

Complete the Emergency Contact and Supplemental Information Form

Deadline: June 15, 2015

The Physical Examination form that you complete and send to Student Health Services is confidential and will be seen only by the staff at Student Health Services. There may, however, be health issues that could affect your safety and well-being in the residence halls. The Office of Student Affairs would like to know about those, as well as your emergency contact information in the event of an emergency. If you have any serious allergies or take medication without which your health or emotional stability would be threatened, please share that information with us. In addition, if there are other health issues that you would like to tell us about to help us ensure your well-being at Pomona, we urge you to do so. Please go to myPomona to submit your form.

Sign Up for an Orientation Adventure Trip!

Deadline: July 1, 2015

Orientation Adventure (OA) is an opportunity to enjoy several days of fun and challenging activities before campus orientation begins. Everyone must participate in Orientation Adventure. Whether you were raised in the wilderness or you're looking for an urban outing, you'll find an adventure to your liking. Look over the website thoroughly before selecting your trip-be adventurous-pick something you've never done before! All the trips are great fun and provide an opportunity to meet classmates in a relaxed atmosphere before classes begin.

Sign up for a Critical Inquiry (ID 1) Class

*(First-year students only)

Deadline: TBA. Please refer to the portal for the most up to date information.

Critical Inquiry (ID1) is a program of seminars for first-year students in their first semester at the College. Seminars are taught by faculty from across the disciplines and engage students in rigorous reading, writing, and discussion on varied topics. The goal of ID1 is to prepare students to participate fully and successfully in the intellectual community that is Pomona College. Critical writing is an essential component of that participation, and to that end ID1 is a writing-intensive course. All sections of ID1 focus on writing as a recursive process of drafting and revision. The seminars all meet from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Descriptions of the individual seminar topics for Fall 2015 will be available starting in early June on myPomonaDara Regaignon

Complete the Physical Exam Form & Counseling Center Survey

Deadline: August 1, 2015

Send to:
Student Health Service
757 College Way
Claremont, CA 91711

Each year students come to Pomona from all over the world. In treating them, Student Health Services and the Counseling Center need to know as much as possible about the state of their physical and mental health, along with required immunizations that have been completed. The Physical Examination & the Counseling Center Survey must be completed and mailed to the Student Health Center. This information is confidential and will not be reviewed by the Office of Student Affairs. Please go to myPomona to download the forms. You can also access the forms at

After you print and complete the health history section on the Physical Examination form, have your family physician complete the remainder of the physical examination form and review the immunizations that have been received. A Tuberculosis screening questionnaire is required prior to enrollment at Pomona with a TB skin test and/or CXR to be performed if indicated. A number of immunizations are required as well: two doses of measles, mumps and rubella; and tetanus/diphtheria with a booster in the last ten years. Additional recommended vaccinations include hepatitis A, hepatitis B, human papilloma virus (HPV), meningococcal meningitis, polio, and varicella (chicken pox - if you have not had the disease). 

Take the Online Alcohol Education Class

Available: To be available in June. Please refer to the portal for the most up to date information.

Deadline: Please refer to your student portal for deadline information

All first-year and new transfer students are required to take an online alcohol education course before arriving on campus. This online, interactive course educates students about the harmful effects of alcohol. Students must complete the program in order to register for classes.  For more information, please go to myPomona.

Complete your Summer Reading!

Each year, Pomona College chooses a "first-year" book selection to be provided to all the members of the incoming class and new transfer students. During Orientation, students will have the opportunity to meet the book’s author and hear from him or her, followed by small group discussions led by faculty members.  All student leaders, and numerous other faculty, staff and students also read the first year book, so there will be many opportunities to share your thoughts, reflections, and ideas about the book.

This year, we will be reading the memoir My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor. 

We will be sending you the book in early June. Be on the lookout for it!

Important Considerations

Consider Signing Up for a Zipcar Membership & Personal Property Insurance

First-year students are not allowed to bring cars to campus, and we strongly encourage you to identify alternative means of local transportation, including bikes, public transportation and Zipcar. Zipcar is a service that rents cars (including Honda Civic Hybrids) to students 18 and over with good driving records.
Pomona has contracted with Zipcar to provide hourly rental cars for students on campus. The membership is $25 and you get up to $35 in driving credit. Hourly rates start at $8.50 and daily rates start at $69. Prices vary depending on weekday or weekend use.
Zipcar allows students to have short-term use of a car for shopping, medical appointments or other personal errands. For more information about membership eligibility, or to sign up, please go to

For any questions about first year students bringing cars to campus please contact the Office of Campus Life at (909)607-2239.

Assess Your Personal Property Insurance: Pomona College does not assume responsibility for loss or damage to personal property belonging to students. Parents and students should inspect their insurance policies to determine whether the limits and conditions are sufficient to cover student property in Claremont. Loss or theft of personal property from student residence hall rooms does occur and is aggravated by students not locking the doors to their rooms while away from them. It is important to both exercise caution at Pomona as one would at home, and to maintain adequate personal insurance to cover items that may be lost, stolen or damaged. Pomona College does not cover loss or damage to students' personal property.

During vacations, students are urged to check their valuables into one of the locked alarmed trunk rooms available on campus. These rooms provide an additional measure of safety, but the College does not assume liability for losses which may occur.

Students and parents are urged to:

  1. Be sure that student property is covered under an insurance policy.
  2. Purchase supplemental insurance for students' personal property if needed.
  3. Leave all but essential valuables at home.
  4. Develop and encourage prudent habits for personal security, especially the habit of locking residence hall room doors when sleeping or when not in the room.

For more information regarding theft or property insurance, please go to