Admissions Decisions FAQ
How do I access my applicant portal?
If you are having trouble accessing your applicant portal, you can reset your password. To do this, you will need the original email with the subject line “Pomona College: Important Application Information” sent to you when you applied to Pomona College. If you cannot find this email, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will resend the original email. Please indicate the correct email address for this correspondence.
Will I receive a letter in the mail?
All applicants are notified of their admissions decisions online via their applicant portal. Students offered admission will receive a letter and enrollment booklet in the mail after decisions are released.
When will I receive my financial aid award?
If you submitted a complete financial aid application, are admitted and qualify for need-based aid from Pomona, your financial aid award accompanies your admission notification. If your family’s financial need could not be determined because of an incomplete application, a letter explaining the additional information that is required will be included in your applicant portal. You may follow up with our Office of Financial Aid at email@example.com.
Can I appeal my financial aid award?
Some students and their families experience unique circumstances that affect their ability to pay their college costs. These might include unusually high unreimbursed medical bills, job loss or reduced income, or other changes to family circumstances. Students whose families are experiencing these or similar situations are encouraged to contact the Office of Financial Aid for a re-evaluation of their financial aid eligibility.
As part of the review, we request that you complete a Change in Circumstances form [pdf] and submit the requested documentation detailed on the form. After the evaluation, the Office of Financial Aid will determine whether an adjustment can be made to the family contribution. In cases where your request does not qualify for additional grant aid, the Office of Financial Aid can help a family in reviewing other resources or educational loans to assist with school costs.
How will I be able to learn more about Pomona after being admitted?
We warmly welcome you to visit campus! In addition to Admitted Students Day (April 17), a special day of programming just for admitted students and their families, we invite you to visit on Fridays for campus tours reserved for admitted students—or visit any day your schedule allows! Your admissions officer would be happy to help you plan a visit to ensure all your questions are answered. We also have many ways for you to connect with the Pomona community online and explore all that we have to offer. Through videos, webinars, social media, student blogs, podcasts, web features, email, text and virtual chats, we hope to answer your questions—even those you haven't thought of yet. Your Pomona admitted student portal will feature curated information, and students and families can also find more on our Admitted Students webpage and our New Students website (both updated in the spring).
I was admitted, and I want to drop a course or change my schedule. Do I need to let you know?
As outlined in your admission letter, we expect you to “maintain your strong academic performance as well as your personal integrity.” If there is a situation outside of your control, in regards to dropping a course or changing your schedule, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible and ask your teacher or counselor to provide a follow-up explanation of a course cancellation or elimination to email@example.com.
Do I need to take an AP or IB test to receive credit for the course? If I'm at an international school, do I need to take my IB exams?
We do not require domestic students to take an AP or IB test in order to complete these classes. See the Advanced Standing webpage for our credit policies for AP and IB test scores.
We do require that admitted international students pursuing the International Baccalaureate Curriculum at international schools complete the IB, which includes the exams. If your school is not supporting diploma completion, please email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your options.
I would like to defer my enrollment, either to take a gap year or for medical reasons. What should I do?
The deadline to request a deferral to take a gap year is May 1. Requests to defer admission for one year are reviewed and approved individually by the Dean of Admissions. If you wish to defer your enrollment for medical reasons, the deadline to request a deferral is July 1. You may email your request to email@example.com or mail your request to Pomona College, Office of Admissions, 333 N. College Way, Claremont, CA 91711. Please see the Deferring Enrollment page for more information.
I was deferred. What does that mean?
We typically defer 10-15 percent of our early applicants’ candidacies. If you were deferred, it means that the Admissions Committee found strong potential in your early application and would like to consider your application again among those in the regular decision round. We will notify you of our final decision before April 1. Deferred students are either admitted or denied. Meanwhile, you should send us your most recent grades and are invited to update us by February 10 with any new activities or endeavors. Feel welcome to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or use the self-service tool in your applicant portal (just above the application checklist).
When are I-20s for international students issued?
I-20s for international students are issued in late April to mid-May. The International Student Services Resource Guide offers more information for incoming international students.
I am unable to pay the $500 enrollment fee? What can I do?
Students for whom payment of the $500 enrollment fee constitutes a hardship may be eligible for a reduced deposit or may arrange a payment plan. Please email the Office of Admissions at email@example.com.
Can I appeal my admissions decision?
No, all admissions decisions are final. Pomona does not have an appeals process.
Does Pomona award scholarships to National Merit Finalists?
After the final reply date (May 1), Pomona awards scholarships to a limited number of enrolling National Merit Finalists. Not all admitted National Merit Finalists will be offered an award. There is no additional information that Finalists need to submit to our office to be considered for a four-year scholarship award of $1,000/year.
What is Pomona's policy on rescinding an offer of admission?
In all of its offers of admission, the Office of Admissions at Pomona College states, [this] “offer of admission is made with the provision that you maintain your strong record of academic achievement as well as your personal integrity. We will review all final transcripts and ask that you have your school forward transcripts at the end of each grading period and send a final transcript confirming your graduation and good standing at the end of the school year.” When an enrolling student fails to meet this academic or integrity standard, a transparent, student-centered review process is initiated by the Admissions Committee.
What does Pomona’s review process for rescinding admission look like?
The review process can include, but is not limited to:
- A review of the student’s mid-year, third-quarter or final transcript, as well as final IB results.
- A conversation with teachers or college counselors at the student’s high school or university.
- A conversation with the student to directly raise concerns regarding academic or integrity issues.
- The request of written statements from teachers, counselors, students or other individuals who might be able to assist the committee in understanding the academic or integrity issue of concern.
- Consultation with the Vice-President and Dean of Admissions.
- The re-convening of the Admissions Committee for the purposes of reconsidering a candidate for admission using the new information within the context of our standard holistic review process.
During the review process, what can I expect?
In cases of review, the decision to rescind an offer of admission is not a foregone conclusion. Each student who fails to meet the academic and integrity standards outlined in their offer of admission will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Each student will be treated as an individual whose unique story will be heard and genuinely considered by the Committee. You may expect:
- To be provided with the email and office phone number of a senior admissions officer in order to keep the lines of communication between the Admissions Office and the student free and open.
- That all reasonable attempts will be made to understand the circumstances that led to the academic or integrity issue of concern, be that via phone or written communication.
- To receive a direct written communication from a senior admissions officer if an offer of admission is in fact rescinded.
- That the student’s college counselor will be notified of the rescind via a written communication.
What are some examples of academic or integrity issues that could prompt an investigation or rescind process?
Issues that might provoke a review process of a student’s offer of admission include but are not limited to:
- A decline in achievement in an academic course from B in 7th Semester to a D/F in 8th Semester.
- Withdrawal from a core academic class without notifying the Office of Admissions.
- Violating a school/university academic integrity policy during the final semester of enrollment.
- A significant discrepancy between a predicted A-Level/IB score and an actual A-Level/IB score.
- The intentional misrepresentation of a self-reported SAT, ACT, TOEFL or IELTS score.
All decisions that are reconsidered and decided upon by the Admissions Committee under these circumstances are final and not subject to appeal. Admitted or enrolling students who feel an academic or personal integrity issue could arise or has arisen, or who have questions about this policy, should immediately be in touch with the Director of Admissions.
I was wait-listed. What does that mean?
How does the wait list work?
We are aiming for a class of 415 students this year. Since it isn't possible to predict exactly how many students will accept our offers of admission, we offer some students a position on the wait list. If we do not reach our target number by May 1, 2023, we will begin to extend offers of admission to a limited number of students on the wait list.
Is the wait list ranked? Where am I on the wait list?
No, students on the wait list are not ranked. We will reconsider all of the wait listed students again in May, when we know how many students remain on the wait list and how many we can admit.
How many people are on the wait list?
For the past several years, about 9% of our active regular decision applicants were offered a position on the wait list. Not all of those students choose to remain on the wait list, and we expect the same this year.
How many people will you admit from the wait list this year?
While we do not yet know how many students we may admit from the wait list this year, when we reach our target number of students in the Class of 2027, we will notify the remaining students on the wait list that our class is full.
Who do you admit from the wait list? How can I increase my chances of admission?
If we go to the wait list, we will consider the overall composition of our class as one factor in choosing students. If we waitlisted you, it means we would like to admit you to the class if space becomes available. The most important step you can take is to submit the Wait List Offer Response form (accessible on your applicant portal) if you would like to remain on the wait list. If we admit wait-listed students, we will only consider those students who have submitted the Wait List Offer Response form. We encourage students to complete this form once they know all of their college choices. The deadline to complete the form is May 1.
While you do not need to submit additional documents, you can express your interest more enthusiastically by emailing a brief update to your admissions officer, who will be happy to add your written correspondence to your application record. Finally, continue to perform well in your senior classes, as we may check on your academic progress if we plan to extend an offer of admission.
What should I do about the May 1 reply date for other colleges?
You should accept an offer of admission from another college before the May 1 deadline, even if it means making a deposit. After May 1, colleges will determine whether they will admit students off of their wait lists and, if so, how many they will admit. Students who accept admission off of a wait list will notify the college at which they initially deposited to "unenroll" and will enroll at the second college. This shifting of students in and out of the class is a standard and expected part of the admissions process that can extend from early May into July.
If I'm admitted off of the wait list, do I have to go to Pomona? What about financial aid?
You are not required to enroll. We will give you a financial aid offer, and you will be given time to consider before letting us know your decision. Please note that, if you are admitted off of the wait list, you are not eligible to defer your admission (i.e. to take a gap year). Our wait list process, like our entire admissions process, is need-blind, and we will meet the full need of all admitted students.
What should I do now?
We encourage you to focus on choosing the best-fit college from those that have offered you admission. Wait lists are uncertain, so it is best not to pin your hopes on a college that has not offered you admission yet. If you are not admitted to Pomona College off of the wait list, we encourage you to embrace your admission to another college and fully commit to the experience of being a student there. If you remain interested in Pomona, submit your Wait List Offer Response form and send us an email later in April once you’ve had the chance to process your choices. There won't be any wait list news until early-to-mid May. Once the class is full, we will notify all students who remain on the wait list.