Mount Holyoke appreciates the work that school counselors do to help students discover the colleges that best match their ambitions and personalities. We want to help you easily access the information that you need to introduce high-achieving young women to MHC.
Counselor Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of student is a match for Mount Holyoke?
Mount Holyoke is looking for smart, ambitious students who have a love of learning and are interested in taking risks in their education. Students who chose MHC tend to demonstrate a high level of maturity and independence. In addition to being good thinkers, they tend to be doers who act on their interests and who are leaders in their communities. Mount Holyoke is an institution full of rich opportunities and while students may come here not knowing exactly what they want to major in or do for the rest of their life, they have the drive and the self-awareness to find out. Please see the Class Profile to get a better sense of the high academic caliber of student that decides to come to MHC.
How does Mount Holyoke's admission process work?
We consider the "big picture" when assessing a student's admissibility. While we give greatest weight to school records and evaluations, we also consider special talents, particular goals, and character. We are looking to make a "match" in the admission process where the students' interests and aspirations complement Mount Holyoke's offerings. Applications to the College are purposely intensive, requiring a substantial amount of writing and strongly recommending an interview in order to assist the Admission Committee in becoming better acquainted with the student. Each application is read thoroughly by at least one seasoned admission counselor who is responsible for recruiting in the area from which the application arises (and therefore knows much about the context in which the student is studying). Each application is also discussed in an Admission Committee.
What makes Mount Holyoke distinctive from other liberal arts institutions?
There are many facets of Mount Holyoke that give students an edge beyond the outstanding academic program and facilities, smart, friendly students and a formidable faculty that love teaching as much as research. It's an institution that gives students the "space" to really define themselves and explore, giving them the support and confidence to take significant academic risks along the way. Mount Holyoke is anything but an ivory tower encouraging a meaningful connection to the world through Community Based Learning courses, a Speaking, Arguing and Writing Center, and sustaining the highest percentage of international students of all liberal arts colleges in the country. As well, Mount Holyoke is also one of the most technologically advanced colleges in the nation offering numerous courses that integrate a technological component. And finally, as a member of the Five College Consortium, MHC students benefit from the strengths of women's education at a small liberal arts college within the coed context of a larger community of 30,000 other students.
How can I convince my female students to consider a women's college?
For many young women, considering a women's college is a risky choice. But when Mount Holyoke alumnae discuss what made their college experience special, it is the fact that it is a women's college that they mention first and foremost. The atmosphere of confidence and leadership amongst a community of strong women is palpable and infectious at the College. Sure, there are statistics that support the notion that graduates of women's colleges have an edge over female graduates of coed institutions, but each student's experience will be different. What's special about a women's college is that there are no preconceived notions about what a woman can do which leads to an environment with a very different sense of purpose. Women's colleges also foster an "old girls network" that has served Mount Holyoke graduates enormously well in their pursuits of internships, graduate schools, and employment. Finally, when your students say to you, "Yes, but, what about the boys?" you can always explain that attending a women's college doesn't translate into a lack of social life. Mount Holyoke students take full control of their social life and you can bet there will be male students, especially from the Five College Consortium, at various events around campus.
Do students really take advantage of the Five College Consortium?
Yes. In any given semester, there are approximately 300 Mount Holyoke students taking classes at either Amherst, Smith, and Hampshire Colleges, or the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. And in turn, 300 consortium students taking classes at MHC. With on-line registration, it's never been easier to take advantage of the 5000+ classes offered. Each institution is located within a 12 mile radius and is accessed via a free bus system that runs virtually 24 hours a day. Students find it's a wonderful opportunity to hone and expand their studies, as well as broaden their social options.