December 2011 Archives

Deadline Extension!

Hello friends!

I wanted to let you know that we are extending our application deadline by 24 hours to January 2, 2012 at 12 midnight. We hope that this gives you a little extra time to work on your quality essays, get some additional materials together (if needed), and send them to us!

Also, did you know that once you submit your application you will have access to our portal where we have all of your materials listed? You can manage your own process and make sure that you are up to date on all of your teacher recommendations, transcripts, current senior grades, school profiles, etc. Once you submit your application you will receive an email with a username and password that will let you log in.

We are heading on winter break ourselves, and we will be out of the office next week. If you have a question and you email, we will get back to you in time. It might take a little bit longer than usual, but we are doing our best! We have 6 people who work in our office, and we are all trying to process mail. process electronic submissions, read applications, and get in touch with those students who need our help. Please be patient during these next few weeks.

Thank you! We look forward to reading your applications!

Have a wonderful winter holiday!


The Olin College Admission Office (Charlie, Emily, Josh, Laura, Jessica, Duncan, and Susie)

Here are some answers to your most frequently asked questions about the application process. Please email us at if you have any additional questions or if you need clarification.


Why do you keep reminding me to apply? I already did!

If you keep getting emails from us reminding you to apply, it's possible that you haven't hit the submit button yet. Doing so automatically takes you off our "remind" list. This is more common that you might think. Also, check to see if you got a confirmation email. If you haven't received an email within 24 hours confirming the receipt of your application, please check your spam box and then check with us.


How can I see what materials you received from my teachers and what I still need to send?


Please keep the acknowledgement and account creation emails we send! They include instructions on accessing the portal, so you can see if we have received your stuff. You will only get access to the Portal to check the status of your application materials after you apply, so please make sure you apply in a timely manner. Speaking of time......


Your deadline isn't until January 1, so I'm going to ask my teachers for recommendations before I leave for Winter Break. Also, I'm going to be taking the January SAT and send you those scores. OK?

NO! Our January 1 deadline is very important to our office. Because of the structure of our application process, we only have about 2 weeks to process and read every application. If your application is not complete by the deadline we might read it without all the pieces. This is NOT in your best interest. Also, our decisions for Candidates' Weekend are made before you have taken the January SAT. We cannot accept those scores.


 I'm enrolled in a college class this semester in addition to my regular high school classes. I won't get my grade until January- what do I do? / What the heck are Current Senior Grades? I won't have grades until January!

We need to know how you are doing during your Senior Year. A copy of your first quarter report card is fine. If you won't have final grades until January, please send us either a copy of your progress reports or have your teachers give some indication on how you're doing.


My teacher wants to send in my recommendation on her own. Is that OK? / If I send in my application piece by piece, rather than in one big batch, is that OK?

Yes, that's fine. We will keep your materials together until they are complete.  Just make sure they include your full name and birth date on the forms.


If I wanted to have an additional letter of recommendation, is that acceptable? Would that person have to fill out a form?

It is accepted, but not expected, for students to have additional letters of recommendation. That additional person should simply write the letter and include your full name and birth date on the letter. If you want, they can fill out The Common Application form to go along with it, but it is not necessary. They should mail it to us at Olin College Office of Admission, 1000 Olin Way, Needham, MA 02492.


It is 11:59 pm on 12/31/11. I am going to have my mom drive 50 miles to the post office through the snow and cold to have my credentials postmarked in order to make sure they are in under the deadline. OK?
If your credentials are postmarked on or around 1/1, that is fine. Please don't have your poor mother go through any more than she already does. If something is postmarked 1/2 or 1/3, we won't mind. RELAX!

Do you need an official score report of my AP scores?

No, we trust you to fill out the self-reported AP test and score section of the application honestly. Olin has an honor code and we expect our applicants to be honest and truthful. We will be able to see the AP classes you are currently enrolled in from your transcript, so you don't need to enter those in that section. Please just enter the tests and scores of tests already taken.


How strict are you about the essay word limits?

Please try to stay within the 500 and 300 word limits. However, if you go over by 25-50 words, don't stress. We'll still read your essays! 


Do you combine the best SAT scores from different tests ("Super-scores")? Or should I just send in the best ones?

Yes, we do "super-score" SAT and ACT tests. You can send them all and they will be automatically scored.


I built a 30 foot steel abstract representation of Franklin W. Olin/wrote a novel using only adverbs/won the Olympic Gold in ice dancing. Can I send it to you?

While we would love to see it, we don't have space for large items and we can't return items. If something is large and you want us to see it, please take a photo of it and mail it in. If it's one of a kind, please make a copy and send it. Your best bet is to make sure that anything supplementary fits into a file folder. If it is music or a DVD, please mail us a physical copy. We don't want to open links or attachments (no offense).


sound of music

Do you have a love of classical music? Do you live in the New York City metro area? Then you should attend a free performance by the Olin Conductorless Orchestra at the historic Great Hall at Cooper Union on Sunday, December 18th.

The Olin Conductor Orchestra (OCO) is celebrating its tenth year with a complimentary concert in New York City. The OCO is a musical ensemble, sans conductor, that features instrumentalists in leadership and collaborative roles. It is the only conductorless orchestra of its kind at an American college or university!

The OCO performance takes place on Sunday, December 18, 2011 at 2:00pm in the Great Hall at Cooper Union. Afterwards, there will be an Olin Admission event with Vice President for External Relations and Dean of Admission Charles Nolan for any interested prospective students and parents.

Come for the music - stay for the knowledge!

We hope those of you in the area will attend and help us make this event a success so we can take the OCO on the road to new locations in future years. Learn more about the OCO performance and formally RSVP by visiting the Olin website. Also, stay connected and receive updates related to the event on Facebook.

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