Whitman’s admission process is selective to assure a student body with excellence in both academic and extracurricular pursuits and with varied ethnic and geographic backgrounds. To achieve this balance, the Admission Committee evaluates scholastic records, the quality of written expression, test scores, extracurricular activities, and letters of recommendations. Evidence of motivation, discipline, imagination, creativity, leadership, and maturity also are considered.
Although more than 60 percent of the entering first-year students graduated in the top 10 percent of their secondary school classes, there are no arbitrary entrance requirements or quotas. It is recommended that candidates complete four years of secondary school English and mathematics, three years of laboratory science, and two years each of history/social sciences and foreign language. The Admission Committee looks for those candidates who excel in the most demanding courses offered.
Whitman College is committed to providing access to an affordable education for as many admitted students as possible. About 48 percent of current students demonstrate financial need and a total of 78 percent receive some form of financial aid – scholarships, grants, employment, or loans. All students who need assistance are encouraged to apply for financial aid.
Whitman College has a strong commitment to the principle of nondiscrimination. In its admission and employment practices, administration of educational policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs, Whitman College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, gender, religion, age, marital status, national origin, physical disability, veteran’s status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other basis prohibited by applicable federal, state, or local laws.
Fall admission application due dates are November 15 and January 1 for Early Decision applicants; January 15 for Regular Decision first-year candidates; and March 1 for Regular Decision transfer applicants. Transfer students may apply under either option. It is advantageous to complete admission credentials early. Qualified applicants who file credentials after the Regular Decision deadline dates may be admitted only to the extent that space is available.
Notification dates for admission are as follows: December 20 for Early Decision I, February 1 for Early Decision II, April 1 for Regular Decision candidates, and April 20 for Regular Decision transfer candidates.
The application deadline for spring semester is November 15. Notification of admission decisions are mailed December 5.
Early Decision is an option for candidates who have selected Whitman as their first-choice college. Some students reach this decision early in the college search process. Others take more time to consider a variety of colleges before they arrive at a clear first choice. Whitman, therefore, conducts the Early Decision process in two rounds. The first-round deadline is November 15; the second-round deadline is January 1. Admission decisions for each date are rendered within four weeks of the deadline, and financial aid awards will be made as soon as each admitted candidate’s financial aid file is complete. Whitman considers Early Decision applications before those of students who are making multiple applications to colleges. Candidates who are admitted Early Decision agree to withdraw their applications from other colleges and universities and notify them of their intention to attend Whitman
Whitman participates with a national group of more than 500 colleges that encourages the use of the Common Application. The purpose of a Common Application is to reduce repetition in completing forms when filing applications to several selective colleges. The Common Application is available at most high school guidance offices throughout the United States on paper and on the Web. A student may pay application fees and submit the Common Application online to as many colleges as he or she wishes. In addition to submitting the Common Application, students also must complete the Whitman Supplement.
Applicants are encouraged to submit credentials utilizing an electronic application.
Applications to Whitman College are available on paper and on our website: www.whitman.edu/content/admission.
Students applying for first-year standing must submit to the Office of Admission, 345 Boyer Avenue, Whitman College, Walla Walla, WA 99362, the following credentials:
- The Common Application.
- An official transcript of the secondary school record.
- A School Report completed by the applicant’s secondary school counselor.
- An academic recommendation from a secondary school teacher.
- A Whitman Supplement provided by Whitman’s Office of Admission.
- A nonrefundable application fee of $50, remittance made payable to Whitman College. (Using guidelines distributed by the College Board for test fee waivers, applicants suffering financial hardship may have this fee waived by written request substantiated by a counselor or principal.)
- Scores on either of the following tests: the SAT I (Scholastic Assessment Test), administered by the College Board, or the ACT, with the writing test administered by the American College Testing Program.
If an Early Decision applicant, the candidate should take one of the required tests no later than October (Early Decision I) of the senior year in order that score reports may reach the Office of Admission by November 15. (Scores from the November and December test dates may be submitted for Early Decision II applicants.)
If a Regular Decision applicant, the candidate should take one of the required tests no later than December in the senior year in order that score reports may reach the Office of Admission by January 15.
Arrangements for taking the SAT I or the ACT must be made directly with the testing agency, and the responsibility for making these arrangements rests with the candidate.
- If an Early Decision applicant, an Early Decision Agreement provided by Whitman’s Office of Admission.
Students applying for transfer standing must submit to the Office of Admission, 345 Boyer Avenue, Whitman College, Walla Walla, WA 99362, the credentials listed above for first-year applicants and the following credentials:
- Official Transcripts from each college or university attended.
- The College Official’s Report Form available as part of the Common Application for transfer students.
The following guidelines also apply:
- A School Report is not required of applicants who graduated two or more years prior to the time of application or who will have completed two years of college work by the time of enrollment at Whitman.
- Transfer applicants must submit an academic recommendation from a college instructor or high school teacher.
- The SAT I, administered by the College Board, or the ACT, with the writing test administered by the American College Testing Program, is not required of applicants who will have completed two years of college work by the time of enrollment at Whitman.
International students (students who are not U.S. citizens, U.S. permanent residents, green card holders, or refugees) must submit to the Office of Admission, 345 Boyer Avenue, Whitman College, Walla Walla, WA 99362, the credentials listed above for first-year or transfer applicants with the following additions:
- An official score report from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). A TOEFL score of 560 (for the paper-based exam) or 85 (for the Internet-based exam) is required.
- An official score report from the Test of Written English (TWE) if possible. The test is offered in connection with the TOEFL in selected months. For students who have taken the TOEFL in a month when the TWE was not offered, the TWE results are not required.
- To apply for financial aid, international students must complete and submit the CSS Profile application.
The following guidelines also apply:
- The SAT I, administered by the College Board, is not offered in the People’s Republic of China; therefore, it is not required for students applying from China.
- Early Decision or spring term admission is not an option for international students unless financial aid is not a consideration.
- All credentials must be received in the Office of Admission at Whitman College no later than January 15.
The college requires final transcripts of all high school and college work. Prior to enrollment, a first-year student must submit a high school transcript or equivalent academic credential demonstrating completion of a high school degree. A Medical Report Form, mailed from the Office of Admission after receipt of the enrollment deposit, also is required.
Space in a college residence hall is assured automatically with admission for all first-year students. A roommate assignment questionnaire will be sent to candidates with the offer of admission.
An enrollment deposit of $300 is required to reserve a student’s place in the class. The deposit for Early Decision candidates must be mailed by February 15 and is nonrefundable. The deposit for Regular Decision First-Year admission candidates must be mailed by May 1, the National Candidates Reply Date, and is nonrefundable. For transfer students, the deposit must be mailed by May 20. Students entering spring semester must pay their deposit by December 15. When late applicants are admitted on a “space-available basis,” the deposit is due by the date which is stipulated in the letter of admission and is nonrefundable.
Admission may be deferred for up to one full academic year, but the deposit must be paid by the date stated in the letter of admission and is not refunded if the student chooses not to enroll.
The $300 enrollment deposit is held in reserve by the college for the student. This deposit is returned upon graduation or withdrawal from Whitman if there are no unpaid charges remaining on the student’s account (see “Deposit” in the Charges section). Prior to the refund of the deposit, students with federal loans must have an exit interview with the Student Loans Manager. Additionally, an exit interview with a member of the administrative staff, scheduled through the Dean of Admission and Financial Aid, is required prior to the release of the enrollment deposit if the student leaves prior to graduation.
A person may apply through the Office of Admission to attend Whitman as a nondegree-seeking student if he or she wishes to take certain courses but not pursue a degree program. Nondegree-seeking students register on a space-available basis and must secure written permission from the professor after the first day of the semester. If a nondegree-seeking student wishes at any time to become a regular student (i.e., pursue a degree program), he or she must file all application credentials for consideration by the Admission Committee (see also “Nondegree-seeking students” under Classification of Students, and under Tuition).
A person may be admitted to the college as an auditor with the permission of the Dean of Admission and Financial Aid and of the instructor whose class he or she desires to attend. Auditors are not allowed in “activity” courses or in courses with studio or laboratory exercises. No credit is allowed for audited work, and no permanent record of audited work is kept. However, auditors must pay an auditor’s fee (see Auditors and Auditor’s Tuition).
Whitman College’s academic programs of study are approved by the Higher Education Coordinating Board’s State Approving Agency (HECB/SAA) for enrollment of persons eligible to receive educational benefits under Title 38 and Title 10, U.S. Code. The college may allow credit for military service activities which have educational content to students who present acceptable military records. Such documentation should be submitted as part of the admission credentials. The Registrar is the veteran’s benefits official for the college.
The primary purpose of the Gateway Program is to encourage low income and first generation, as well as other Walla Walla Community College students from diverse backgrounds, to pursue a liberal arts education at Whitman College.
To participate in the program, students must demonstrate the ability to meet the rigors of academic work at Whitman College. Students must be nominated by the Multicultural Coordinator and Vice President of Instruction at Walla Walla Community College for enrollment in the program. The nominee must submit an application to the Whitman Admission Committee and be approved by the committee for entrance into the program.
Participants enroll in one or two classes at Whitman College after their fourth quarter at Walla Walla Community College. These participants will then be considered for admission to Whitman College as full-time degree candidates after successful completion of their sophomore year. Participants complete a reduced class load at Walla Walla Community College while attending Whitman College during the trial period. The reduced load will be such that the participant will continue to receive financial aid at Walla Walla Community College. The courses at Whitman will apply to graduation requirements at both institutions and will be paid for by Whitman College.
If the Whitman Admission Committee finds the Gateway Program participant academically successful at both colleges, the participant will be given special consideration for admission to Whitman College as a regular degree-seeking transfer student under the provisions outlined in the operating agreement.