Today is the day. At 6:15 pm PDT, we will be releasing our decisions.
Technically we have been recruiting the Harvey Mudd College Class of 2021 for years, ever since some of you checked that magical box on your PSAT’s saying that you were willing to receive mail from colleges. And today is the day we have been working toward ever since. Today is a big deal for us because we are proud of the decisions we have made and excited to see who will accept our offer and comprise the Class of 2021. (Our next favorite day is Opening Day, followed closely by the day we finally have all of the responses in.) However, today is also bittersweet, because we know that most of you will not be receiving the news that you want. This year we received 4,078 applications for an entering class of just over 200. Of course we admit more than 200 students knowing that all of our admitted students will have many wonderful options from which to choose, but ultimately this year we were only able to admit 14% of those who applied.
In short, you all are amazing. Whether you were offered admission or not, please know this. We were honored to read your applications and humbled by all you have achieved and, in some cases, overcome. You are compassionate, collaborative, dedicated and smart in multiple ways. I doubt you need us to tell you this, but I know that you should believe it.
The hardest part of this process is that most of the students who apply would be strong Harvey Mudd students, and most would thrive in our rigorous and collaborative environment. Most of the decisions we make are not about separating “qualified” students from “unqualified.” Our decisions are about creating a class from a pool of incredibly talented and wonderful students. In creating a class, we are not just looking for those students who have perfect scores or grades. We are looking for a group of students whose talents, backgrounds and interests will complement each other and who we believe are a good match for Harvey Mudd. Ultimately, when we cannot admit students to Harvey Mudd, it is as much our loss as theirs.
So here is the deal. If the decision you receive from us (or any other college for that matter) is not the one you want, do NOT take this decision as a judgment of your readiness for college work, how hard you worked in high school, or anything beyond what it is – the result of an incredibly talented applicant pool from a college with limited spaces in its first year class. We agonize over these decisions, fight for students during admission committee and become attached to all of you throughout the process. We wish we had room for more students, but we know that the reason many of you chose to apply to Harvey Mudd is because of our small size and community. We know you all will have amazing options, and we are honored that you gave us the chance to get to know you.
With excitement, a healthy dose of nerves, and humility,
The Harvey Mudd College Admission Staff
On a less philosophical note, here are some other important things to keep in mind:
- As mentioned above, we will be releasing all of our decisions at 6:15 pm PDT. You’ll receive an email letting you know to check your Applicant Hub.
- There is no appeals process. As I mentioned above, we agonized over these decisions and were as fair and consistent as we could be.
- For those of you who applied for financial aid, the Office of Financial Aid will begin mailing financial aid packages starting Friday, March 24th to applicants who completed their financial aid application by our deadlines. You’ll receive an email letting you know to check your Applicant Hub, and a physical copy will arrive by mail soon after (to those with US mailing addresses). We figured since we were ready with the admission decisions, you would rather we notify you of those as soon as possible.
- If you were selected for any of our merit scholarships other than RIF or National Merit, you will learn of this in your admission packet. These decisions are also not open for appeal.
- The response date of May 1st is a postmark date for your deposit and the actual deadline for you to let us know online if you are planning on attending, but if you’ve made your decision whether or not to enroll at Harvey Mudd before then, let us know! Your Applicant Hub links directly to the form where you can tell us if you are joining us or not. The sooner we know how many students will accept our offer, the sooner we know whether we will be able to admit the amazing students who are on our alternate list. (Another very happy day for all of us.)