Are you an Early Action applicant? What’s next?

UVM has received nearly 12,000 applications for early action! ย In less than three weeks, we will release our decisions for this group. While our staff is focused on processing these applications and making decisions, I want to share all the information you’ll need in order to be ready for us to review your application:

  • Check your application status page regularly. We have an online application portal – no, it’s not fancy, but it does provide you with helpful information. You can log into the portal here using the credentials we sent after you applied (the login ID is a number that starts with 95 and the PIN is your birthdate in this format: MMDDYY.) When you log in, click on Admission Application Status and you will see a page that looks like this (with your name and address at the top):

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On this page, you will want to note your application status (complete, incomplete), residency (to confirm this is your correct understanding), the college/school and major to which you are applying, and if you have fulfilled the requirements to complete your application (if your application status is complete, then the items will all be listed as received). If your application status is still incomplete, then you will see which item(s) are missing.

  • If your application remains incomplete, there is still time to get the missing credentials to us before the Dec. 16 release date. If your transcript is missing, please be in touch with your school counseling office to send it to us. It can be sent electronically via the Common Application or Naviance, or through the mail. We are not able to accept faxed or emailed copies of a transcript. If your ACT or SAT scores are missing, we are aware that there continued to be some delays in those scores arriving. We continue to receive test scores from the testing agency (they have to be submitted this way in order to be official) several times a week, so missing scores will be added to the application as soon as they are received.
  • If your application is complete, please remember to send us your 1st quarter/trimester senior year grades. These help us in our early action decision making. These grade reports can come either through Naviance/Common Application, or they can be emailed or faxed to us (unlike full transcripts). Receiving these grades this week will allow us to include them in our decision making.

What happens to our applications once they become complete? They are checked for accuracy in grade point average/other academic information and then are sent to our team of readers to begin review. In the review process, we carefully review your academic record – grade point average, grades in the context of the school, rigor of courses taken, grade trends. We review letters of recommendation, extracurricular activities, awards and honors, and citizenship/disciplinary record. We read the essay both for grammar/spelling as well as content. In this review process for early action, one of three actions will be taken – an application will be admitted, an application will be deferred (meaning the application remains under consideration but we will review it in the context of the larger pool), or an application will be denied, meaning that even with further consideration, the application is not competitive for first-year admission. Decisions for early action that were not sent on Nov. 11 will be available on December 16, beginning at 5 pm ET at the same portal described above. The decision (admit, defer, deny) will be listed on the Admission Application Status page.

Additional information to support the application can be sent in at any time during this process. Students/parents are encouraged to contact their admissions counselor (see the geographic listing here) or contact our admissions office at or by phone at 802-656-3370.

We look forward to reviewing your application!


#UVMsaidYES today! What does it mean if I didn’t hear a decision?

UVM Admissions sent positive news to the first round of our Early Action students. Starting about 4:30 pm today, social media lit up with excitement and relief….the relief that all the hard work pays off with the first college acceptance! We emailed out the news this afternoon; the admission letters went in the mail today (the picture below is the excitement we had loading the admission packets in the mail truck.)


A number of students shared their excitement on Twitter as they heard the news. Some notable shares:

There are many more students that applied early action (and whose applications are complete) who are wondering what it means that they didn’t hear a decision today. The prioritization of those who learned a decision today was simply whose application finished the review process first (in other words, no prioritization on our part). As we receive credentials this time of year, they are processed in the order that we receive them until the Nov. 1 deadline, when credentials are received all at the same time. There is variability on when an application becomes complete because of the receipt of test scores. Some credentials need additional review because they have more complex educational history. Other applications remain under review because they are applying for competitive majors. Some applicants have told us that they are sending in 1st quarter grades and we want to wait for them. Many were complete and ready for review, but we simply didn’t finish the review process by today. In other words, those who have a decision today were simply the ones that were read first and they completed the review process by yesterday. The majority of our Early Action decisions, including all Vermont students, will be released on Dec. 16. The number of students who received a decision today, while exciting, represents only about 20% of our early action decisions.

I have been assuring students and parents to not read anything into not receiving a decision. We made the decision to release this group of decisions that were done, rather than holding them until Dec. 16. The majority of our decision making is focused on December 16 at which time all complete early action applicants will have a decision.

We are happy to answer any questions you may have – feel free to contact our staff.

We’ll be reading the remaining Early Action applications over the coming weeks. It is so exciting to see who has put UVM on their list of schools. What great potential the Class of 2020 is showing already!

There is still time to apply! November 1 application deadline

This weekend, many high school seniors have been celebrating Halloween, participating in sporting events, band competitions, Model UN, and applying to college. The extra hour due to daylight savings time is welcome for many parts of the United States. One more hour to get it all done!

On Friday, we mailed a message to our senior inquiries encouraging them to breathe! This is our reassurance that applications will be submitted, that we will receive the information we need to review an application, and we will be flexible on the things that are outside a student’s control (such as delays in sending ACT or SAT scores). Deadlines are created for two reasons…the first reason is for students and schools to have a common date to take action. Without deadlines, it is frequently human nature to put off action. The second reason is that we understand the timeline we need in admissions to process, receive supporting documents and review these applications in order to provide an answer back to students. For students applying as first-year students for early action, we pledge to have an answer for those who complete their application by mid-December (December 16 is our early action release date). For students applying for spring admission, we will release decisions on a rolling basis (about two weeks after an application is complete).

We have received nearly 12,000 applications to date with many more left to be submitted. Please know that if you planned to apply early action but for some reason were not able to submit your application today, please go ahead and submit your application and be in touch with our office.

What happens once your submit your application? We download applications from the Common Application daily. Within 48 hours of downloading the application, we will send an email to the student at the email supplied on the application. This email will contain a login ID (starts with 95) and a PIN. This will allow you to view the UVM application status portal here. This portal is the go-to place for tracking what has been received, the application status, the admissions decision, and when scholarships and financial aid are awarded, the scholarship notification and the financial aid documents received.

Our staff is here to help. Please contact our admissions counselors (contact information found here) and we will be sure to be back in touch with you. If I can assist in any way, feel free to contact me as well.

It is a great time to be at UVM and this is an exciting place to be. I look forward to meeting our potential candidates for the Class of 2020!

Delays in ACT and SAT scores – what do I do?

The college application process can be challenging for students and parents. We want everything to go smoothly with no delays. Deadlines are important! But when things outside the control of students and parents happen, it can introduce stress into the process.

This is the case now with both the ACT and the SAT. We have been notified that scores will be delayed in being sent to universities. The ACT scores are delayed because the scoring on the new writing section is taking longer. ย The SAT writing is also delaying the sending of the new SAT’s. Here is information from the College Board about the SAT:

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Given this information, here is the advice that we have for students applying for early action:

  • First, don’t panic! We work hard to not let delays out of a student’s control impact their admissions process.
  • Next, sit tight. These issues could be resolved in the coming weeks. We often receive test scores for early action applicants in late November and we can still review applications by the mid-December release.
  • Please refrain from sending us screen prints of your test scores (something ACT recommended students do.) We can’t do anything with these screen shots of scores ย – we do need to wait to receive the official scores.
  • Don’t wait to apply – go ahead and submit your application by the Nov. 1 early action deadline. The test scores can arrive later.
  • Be sure to have UVM added to the list of schools to receive your test scores – this will expedite the scores arriving to us.

We continue to monitor the situation carefully and anticipate that the test scores will begin to be sent in the coming weeks. Feel free to let us know if we should wait on new test scores. Also, you may receive incomplete notices from us before those scores arrive. You can always check on your application status on our website using the login ID and PIN we sent to you.

We are here to help! We, too, are anxious to receive your test scores. We know that they will come! Please be in touch if we can answer any of your questions.

It’s a great time to apply to UVM!

This is an exciting but busy time for seniors as they focus on all the activity of senior year, taking SAT or ACT, visiting campuses and working on college applications. UVM works hard to make the application and admission process simple and straight-forward for students.

Students choose to apply to UVM because of the value of the education offered here and because of the unique environment at UVM. Our 100 majors and 10,000 students is a perfect combination of breath and size. Our faculty are in the classroom and engage students in undergraduate research. In fact, 91% of our students participate in some type of experiential learning, either research, study abroad, internships or service learning. Our perfect size in an ideal location make UVM a very popular choice for our applicants.

To apply to UVM, you can begin by adding UVM to your “My Colleges” list in the Common Application. Once the sections of the Common Application are finished, then you can complete UVM’s questions. We only ask a few…there is no additional essay as part of our questions.

To complete the application, you should ask your school counselor to forward a letter of recommendation and official transcript. You should request your SAT and/or ACT scores to be sent to UVM. We prefer to receive all occurrences of your scores as we do super score your test results. You can also submit a teacher recommendation and any other supporting information.

The UVM Admissions Office already has received hundreds of applications from interested students. Our application review begins in October, and our first notification date for applications that have been reviewed is November 11….the sooner you submit your application and have it complete, then we will be able to begin our review!

Our website describes what happens after you apply. Within a day of UVM receiving your application, we will send an email that has a login ID and PIN so that you can check your application status at our status website here.

Our staff is available to answer any questions you might have. Please be in touch as we are happy to assist you.

Good luck as you work on your applications! We look forward to reading yours.

National rankings and UVM

This time of year, we see the annual US News rankings that provides an annual assessment of a dozen or so factors used to rank colleges and universities. I can remember when they were first developed. It wasn’t evident at that time that this annual survey would become part of the higher education landscape to the degree it has. UVM continues to have a strong showing, being ranked in the top 40 public universities in the country (out of 170 public universities nationally). Of note, UVM ranks in the top 25% of all national institutions for expenditures per student (more than $42,000 annually) and for our graduation performance (both our four and six year graduation rates). These factors are particularly important because they show a commitment to students while at UVM and a return on the investment in terms of graduation on time.

This week marked the release of two other rankings that are important to share. The College Scorecard is a national effort to simplify rankings on three factors: average annual cost, graduation rate and salary after attending. These data points are collected from sources that include actual IRS information on the earnings. While not perfect, it is a quick way to make some comparisons. UVM is above the national average in graduation rate and earnings after attending and below the national average in cost to attend (in fact, we are the only institution in Vermont that can make that claim).

In addition to College Scorecard, The New York Times released their College Access Index, measuring a college’s efforts to expand access for economic diversity. Only schools with a five-year graduation rate of 75 percent or higher are included on the list. UVM ranked 59th among all institutions, and 13th for schools with smaller endowments. UVM has a tuition pledge to our Vermont Pell recipients, guaranteeing all tuition costs covered by grant. As a result, UVM enrolls approximately 31% of Vermonters as Pell eligible last year.

A word of advice about rankings…it is critical to use them globally and not comparing literally. In other words, in US News rankings, is #89 and #59 dramatically different in educational quality? There is no evidence that is true and does students a great disservice to believe so. It is helpful to take the time to look into what goes into creating each of the rankings.

The University of Vermont offers students an exceptional undergraduate experience in the classroom, delivered by outstanding faculty that are both researchers and teachers. Experiential learning compliments a students classroom work to create the complete experience for our students.

I hope you will take a look at UVM beyond the rankings…get to know the stories of our students, the accomplishments of our faculty, and the impact our alumni are making. It’s the school of choice for more than 10,000 undergraduate students this year!

It’s a great time to visit the University of Vermont

Vacationers flock to Burlington this time of year! We are very fortunate to be located in such a desirable area, regularly listed on many of the “best of” lists, including one of the best college towns. It was great to run into a student and her family visiting from Arkansas yesterday and telling them all about Burlington, Church Street, the lake and the many opportunities students have for internships in Burlington. We encourage visits in the summer to get an initial impression of the campus and to learn more about the academic programs and the admissions process.

The ย best way to visit UVM is to sign up for a group information session and tour. Tomorrow concludes our July series of academic information sessions. These programs are offered during the month of July and allows students to get a 45 minute overview of the college/school and the more than 100 majors offered. This Friday, July 31, we will host students and families at Summer Preview – an open house-like program that includes an admissions overview, faculty and student panel, and a campus tour. In August, we will offer more than 50 information sessions and tours for families. These programs tend to fill quickly; my advice is to make a reservation soon (and be sure to cancel if your plans change to open up seats for other students). Finally, August 4 is our last summer Transfer Information Session, a presentation and tour targeted at students interested in transferring to UVM. Students who attend this program can also receive a tentative credit evaluation.

How do you make the most of your summer campus visit? Here are a few suggestions:

  • Plan to spend at least half a day on campus and in the surrounding area. Spend the night in Burlington. Have a meal on Church Street.
  • Make a reservation. August is a busy time on most campuses for visits. If reservations are offered, please make one. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday tend to have less demand, so if your schedule permits, choose one of those days.
  • Reservations can be made online. If you are already receiving information from UVM, then we should have created a username for our visit reservation system (even if you didn’t previously register for a visit). The best way to start is to go to our reservation site and reset your password, using the email address that you would have given to UVM previously. If the email address is on our file, then the password reset will allow you to create a new password, and then you can log in and register for the visit. It is important to use the student password (not the parent password) on these visit reservations.
  • Participate in both the information session and tour. They are designed to cover different information (and repeat things that are important to repeat). The tour gives great time with a student; the information session includes a student panel.
  • UVM does not conduct interviews. However, we have admissions counselors available each day to chat with students and answer questions as needed.

Many awesome students have visited during June and July. Here are a few of their comments that they shared on social media, using #uvmvisit:

We look forward to seeing you at the University of Vermont during your #UVMvisit!