“Of all the hardships a person had to face, none was more punishing than the simple act of waiting.”

-Khaled Hosseini, A Thousand Splendid Suns

If it is not obvious, this post is for those left in admission limbo: those offered a place on the waitlist. Late March has come and gone, and you still don’t have an answer. I know you have questions—and I promise I’ll get to those—but first I want to reiterate one thing from your decision letter: a spot on the waitlist is a positive response from the Olin community and the Admission Committee. The waitlist is where people we wanted to admit came crashing into the reality of our class size.  

Our incoming class- even this year with a slightly larger class- is tiny, and unfortunately, we had more wonderfully compelling Candidates than we had room. If you have an offer of admission from a school where you will be happy, we wish you the very best and are grateful we got the chance to know you. If you still firmly believe Olin is the place for you, hang in there and read on.

What do I do now?

Submit your Waitlist Reply Form on your Applicant Status Page. You need to claim your spot on the waitlist so we know you are still interested in Olin. Also, start thinking about where you will enroll. More on this below.

Should I send an updated resume? A portfolio? Fourteen more letters of recommendation? A love letter? 

No. Once you’ve confirmed that you want to remain on the waitlist, we do not need you to provide any additional information. You may send a short statement about your continued interest in Olin (if that’s true!), but that’s it. We have the benefit of both your application and meeting you at Candidates’ Weekends. We are already excited about you; otherwise, we wouldn’t have offered you a spot on the waitlist!  

How many students are on the waitlist? 

We don’t know just yet. We are still waiting to see who will remain on the waitlist for further consideration.

IF you go to the waitlist, how do you decide whom to contact first? 

As I noted during the Candidates’ Weekends What’s Next session (emailed to all virtual Candidates), the waitlist isn’t ranked. The order in which we would contact students from the waitlist to offer a spot in the Class of 2027 is determined by who is already in—or perhaps more accurately, who is not in—the Class. For example, if no students from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts enroll, perhaps we’ll go to the waitlist for someone from our home state. You get the idea. It’s out of your control and not something we can know until the Class of 2027 enrolls.  

If I’m admitted from the waitlist, can I still get the Olin Tuition Scholarship and need-based financial aid? 

Yes! Any student we admit (including any student admitted via the waitlist) is guaranteed the Olin Tuition Scholarship for up to eight semesters (valued at more than $115,000 over four years). Similarly, all admitted students (including those admitted via the waitlist) receive the same benefits of our policy to meet the demonstrated need of eligible students. Read more about financial aid here: http://www.olin.edu/admission/costs-financial-aid/

What’s the timeline? When will I know more? 

We will do our best to notify all students on the waitlist of their status as soon as possible, but it is very likely we will not know anything until after May 1st. 

I understand that this last question may be the hardest to read. I don’t know when or even if we will activate the waitlist, so you will need to make an enrollment deposit at another school. So, my best advice? Submit your Waitlist Reply Form and forget about Olin, or at least push us to the back of your mind. Engage with your other college options—and I know they are fantastic—and start imagining your next four years. Fall in love with another school, another opportunity, another path. And then be happy and surprised if we call. Either way, you’ll be amazing wherever you land.  

“Just don’t give up what you’re trying to do. Where there is love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong.”

 –Ella Fitzgerald

“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.”

—A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

- Emily Roper-Doten

Emily Roper-Doten's electronic signature