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Jul 31, 2020

Connecting This Summer While #HAPPYATHOME

Luke Anthony Peña

By Luke Anthony Peña
Executive Director of Admissions and Financial Aid

Happy July, friends! We’re getting ready to welcome our T’22s for a historic Tuck Launch like no other we’ve ever had, and while the format is different, the enthusiasm to welcome our new Tuck students is as strong as ever. Speaking of virtual events, this summer I’ve traded in my trips around the world for lots of dedicated time on video with many of you aspiring T’23s. Now having led several dozen virtual events where I’ve met several thousand of you, I’d like to share here some thoughts about the admissions-specific questions I’m hearing most often from you.

Tuck has many virtual admissions events. How many/how often should I be attending?
We want to get to know you and you to know us, and we welcome seeing you at multiple events if each helps you learn more about Tuck and meet more people in our community. If this is you, keep coming and keep learning more! However, if you’re attending to “earn points” in admission, let me dispel the myth that you are improving your likelihood of admission. We admit those who most strongly demonstrate our four criteria, not those who attend the most events. In fact, it would be very Tuck-like for you to attend the events that help you learn what you need to know, and then leave space to let others attend so that they can do the same.

Do you have other tips for virtual admissions events?
Yes! If you registered but can no longer attend, take a few seconds to be considerate and cancel your registration; most of our events have waitlists, so you are helping someone else who is eager to attend. When you do attend, bring your questions; our events are interactive so we count on you to participate. I recognize you can’t always have your video on, but it’s great when you can; our events feel more personal when we can all see each other. And be mindful of good online etiquette, including muting, talking one at a time, etc. We and your fellow participants thank you for this!

How else can we get to know Tuck? Can we visit campus on our own?
To protect everyone's health, visitors without specific authorization should not be coming to Dartmouth’s campus, and building access is currently restricted to current students, faculty, and staff. However, we’re currently enhancing our virtual tour, and we plan to offer opportunities to observe classes when they resume in the fall term. We also encourage you to reach out to our Tuck Ambassadors and our student fellows at our Centers, all of whom are eager to share their experiences with you. Finally, we are offering an opportunity to guarantee an interview if you apply by our guaranteed interview deadline.

What is the guaranteed interview, and when is the deadline? Is there an admissions benefit to applying by that deadline?
Tuck has long offered applicants a path to guarantee an interview. In prior years, we guaranteed an interview to those who visited campus. With campus visits suspended, we’re now guaranteeing an interview to those who submit a complete application (including test scores and reference letters) by September 1. This path is a great opportunity for those of you who are confident your interview will enhance your application, who want to get to know Tuck better through an interview conversation, and who want to eliminate the uncertainty of waiting for rolling interview invitations later in the year. However, we admit those who most strongly demonstrate our four criteria, not those who apply earliest. Applying by September 1 does not increase your admission chances in and of itself, and applying after September 1 does not harm your likelihood of admission.

I plan to apply through the Consortium, and their application opens on August 15. If I want to guarantee an interview, do I need to rush to complete my application by September 1?
We continue to take great pride in our partnership with the Consortium and we welcome your application. If you are applying through the Consortium, the guaranteed interview deadline is extended to October 1. Submit your complete application (including test scores and reference letters) to the Consortium by October 1, with Tuck as one of your schools, and we will invite you to interview once we receive your application and confirmation of your application date from the Consortium.

In which round should I apply? Is it better to apply in an early round?
We admit those who most strongly demonstrate our four criteria, not those who apply earliest. In recent years, admissions rates have been similar across our application rounds. You can apply with confidence when your application most strongly demonstrates our criteria, rather than feel pressured to rush to meet an earlier deadline. That said, we do allocate most of our scholarship resources and on-campus housing units to those who apply in Round 1 or Round 2; if these considerations are important to you, there may be incentive for you to apply in one of these earlier rounds.

Are you filling the T’23 class with lots of deferrals from the prior year?
We are not offering blanket deferrals. We expect that the number of deferrals into the T’23 class will be similar to a typical year. We strive to consider and appreciate the perspectives of all of our prospective students, including those of you who are preparing to apply. Mass deferrals would dramatically reduce our available seats for this upcoming cycle, and make applying for our Class of 2023 more artificially competitive. We want to ensure you can apply with confidence that the seats in the T’23 class are attainable.

Are you waiving test scores or any other part of the application for T’23 applicants?
We remain committed to both our criteria for a great Tuck candidate and the application materials where these criteria emerge. We continue to require a complete application, including in-person or online/at-home test scores, for applicants to be considered for admission. Fairness and equity are paramount to the integrity of our evaluation efforts. We are committed to preserving fairness and equity by upholding the same high standards for admissions throughout these uncertain times. We consider online/at-home test scores to be equally valid as in-person test scores.

Non-admissions question: How is Tuck changing its curricular and co-curricular offerings due to COVID-19?
There’s a great overview here about how we at Tuck are responding and innovating in a world of virtual engagement. Several highlights: we created new faculty-support roles to allow professors to focus entirely on their teaching during class. Faculty are leveraging poll, chat, and breakout room functionality to expand on what would be possible with in-person instruction. Alumni and visiting executives joined class discussions and led student talks with greater frequency, and helped create job opportunities for students whose internship and career plans were impacted. Students preserved the immersive nature of the Tuck experience by launching the Quarantuck Initiative to support social and community interactions.

Keep the questions coming our way! My colleagues and I are here to help, and we’ll be glad to answer more of your good questions at our upcoming events, or one on one if you reach out to us. Until then, be well, keep safe and healthy, and see you here again in August.