Is your application complete?

Over the past two weeks, since the application deadline, our early action applicants are working hard to make sure all their application materials and test scores arrive in our office. We would not be able to process so many applications without the support of the school counselors who write letters of recommendations and who ensure transcripts are sent.

We often receive questions about what happens to the application once it arrives in our office. Each morning, our talented data managers import the application data and all the application images. The application record is then created in our student data base so the good news is that we have new applications in our system everyday with no delay! At the same time, we bring images of transcripts and letters of recommendations into our system as well. Those that arrive electronically can “automatically” be matched to the Common Application record. Those that arrive in the mail are scanned  and then matched with the application, a process that takes a bit longer than the electronic matching process through the Common Application. This process is so much more efficient than when everything was received in paper. SAT or ACT scores should be sent directly from the testing agency. We also add these to the application records on a daily basis at this time of year. As a reminder, we will use the highest scores if we receive more than one set of scores from a student so it is best to send us all test scores.

When an application is received, within 48 hours of the application being received and loaded into your information system, we send an email to the email address on the application that contains a student’s UVM ID number and a code for the password. This information allows students to log into our application status check system to see for themselves which pieces of the application are received. It also is the place that a student can see the admissions decision once it is made.

Our team of admissions counselors and readers are working very hard to read the applications and make admissions decisions. With more than 13,000 applications already received, we are enjoying great stories of students, the interesting essays and in learning more about the great students who are interested in UVM.

Most early action admissions decisions for students whose applications are complete will be available as of 5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 13. We have begun to send admissions decisions to students who have been selected to receive their application decision on a rolling basis. We are able to do this to some of our out-of-state applicants. We release the application decisions for our Vermont residents all at the same time, in part because our school counselors advise us that it is best when students in the schools hear admission decisions from UVM all at the same time, given the number of Vermont students who apply to UVM (currently we have received more than 1,400 applications from Vermont students, about a 3% increase over last year.)

We are very thankful for the applications that we receive and look forward to completing our decision-making process over the course of the next two weeks!



SATs and Superstorm Sandy

As of today, more than 12,000 high school seniors have added the University of Vermont on their list of potential colleges for next fall by applying for admission, and our staff is busy beginning our application review. I am very aware that the college search process for many has been disrupted by the impact of Superstorm Sandy.  My thoughts are with you, your family, classmates, and teachers as you recover from this event if you are one of those high school students or parents.

One source of stress I hope to relieve is worry about your SAT scores. The College Board has rescheduled the early November test date for this Saturday, November 17 or Sunday, November 18 for most areas impacted by the storm, though a few makeup dates are yet to be announced.

If you plan to take the SAT this weekend, or even later, please be assured that we will ensure that these scores are factored into both for admission and for scholarship consideration. As a reminder, the University of Vermont considers your highest score for each section – Critical Reading, Math, Writing-regardless of the test date.  The same is true for ACT scores. And if you take the ACT, remember that we need a writing score, either from the ACT with writing or from an SAT. We will consider  SAT or ACT scores submitted to us from testing through January, 2013.

My best wishes for a less eventful remainder of your college search process. Please feel free to contact the Office of Admissions at (802) 656-3370 or at whenever you have a question.

What is in UVM’s future?

There is great anticipation when a new university president unveils his or her direction for the university. This was the case this week when President Sullivan met with our Board of Trustees last week. One focus of his presidency will be affordability for students. He announced that it is his goal to have the tuition increase for next fall be less than 3%, the lowest increase in 36 years. While the tuition cost will not be set until May, this announcement is an early indication of the President’s plan. In addition, President Sullivan announced the focus of the next set of major building construction and renovation. Included in this announcement is a plan to raise money for the renovation of the physical science laboratory space on campus, much like the renovation that has occurred in our life science labs. A summary of his plan can be found on our website.

The Board of Trustees heard from Dr. Aimee Shen, assist professor of microbiology and molecular genetics, who presented an overview of her research that was influential in her being named one of 22 Pew Scholars this year, recognizing some of the nation’s most innovative young researchers. Included in her presentation was work done by one of our undergraduate students. Her presentation highlighted the amazing opportunities our undergraduate students have to work with outstanding faculty members.

What else is happening at UVM? The Cynic, UVM’s student newspaper, won the Pacesetter Award, the top prize for the best school newspaper in the country.This is UVM’s 2nd year for receiving this honor.

UVM featured our new composting program this week. While UVM has been collecting food waste from the dining halls since 1997 and diverts nine tons of food each week from the landfill, a new bicycle-based program is the first centralized effort to provide a composting alternative within departmental and program offices. View a video of the mobile composting program here.

Some UVM students celebrated Halloween in an unusual way – dressing up in costume along with the UVM horses. Learn more about this UVM tradition here.

Our open house yesterday was filled with students and parents interested in learning more about all that UVM has to offer students. Students and parents left feeling very good about the vast array of what students can explore.

As we look to Thanksgiving next week, we are thankful for all that is taking place for students at UVM. It truly is a remarkable place where students have really meaningful and life-changing experiences. And we’ve in good hands under the leadership of President Tom Sullivan!


Application deadline extension; completing your application

We continue to hear from students and families about challenges of submitting the Common Application without electricity. We have communicated to students that we continue to accept applications this week while the Common Application continues to permit students to apply early action. This will be true over the weekend. After the weekend, we encourage students to apply regular decision.

We also want to provide additional clarity about the timeline for receiving supporting information to complete the application. SAT and ACT scores can be sent from the testing agency and should be sent directly. We will take the highest score from each section of the tests. For students who took the SAT last weekend (Nov. 3) we typically receive those scores in late November and will be considered as part of our early action review. Transcripts and letters of recommendation should be sent as soon as the school is able to send them. While we don’t have a specific deadline for their receipt, we encourage them to be sent prior to Thanksgiving, allowing us time to process them and connect them with the application in order to prepare the application to be read.

If you have any questions about the process, please be in touch. We send students who apply an email with log in information to check their application status. This email is sent within two days of us receiving the application (Tuesday if a student applies on Friday or over the weekend.) Please note that around the deadline, we receive a large volume of transcripts and recommendations. It could take a week to process the information received and have it appear as being received on the application status website.

I recognize that this can be a stressful time as students want to be sure that we receive all information in a timely way. Please know that we work to be flexible during this time to help relieve some of that anxiety and know that a delay in seeing the information as being received typically is because of the time delay of processing information for more than 11,000 applications at this time.

We are thankful to every student who applies to UVM and work to process applications quickly and accurately so that students can know that their applications are all set!