The participants are: Amherst, Bowdoin, Connecticut
College, Dartmouth, Mt.
Holyoke, Smith, Trinity, Vassar,
Wellesley, Wesleyan, and
Yes, Students may also apply to Connecticut
College's National Theater
College's Maritime Studies Program at Mystic
College and Spelman
The exchange is primarily for sophomores applying for their junior year away. Other students will be considered if they have the approval of their dean and if space allows. All interested students must be of diploma-grade standing, have no incompletes on their record, and have their financial obligation to the College up-to-date.
Students applying to Spelman must have a 2.8 GPA. There is no minimum GPA for the other institutions.
There is a once a year application process which covers fall, spring and full year for the following academic year. The applications are due at the end of reading period. There is also an unofficial application process on an ad hoc basis the following fall for students who want to participate the following spring, but spaces are more limited at this point. If you are sure you want to participate in the 12 College Exchange, you should apply during the regular application process.
To apply for any study away program, students must declare a major and complete a Proposal to Study Away by December 1 of their sophomore year. The application for the 12 College, Spelman or Mills exchange is due on February 14 of the sophomore year and requires signatures from the Chair of the department in which you plan to major as well as the Director of International Study. On your application, you may only list one college. You may attach a note indicating a second choice if you are not sure of getting a spot at your first-choice institution. Completed applications must be returned to the Office of International Study by February 14 of the year preceeding your proposed study away. You will also need to order a grade report that contains your first semester sophomore grades. Ask the Registrar's Office to send it to the OIS when it is available. Once accepted to the program, you must fill out a Leave of Absence form.
Students applying to National Theater Institute, Williams-Mystic Seaport and Mills College must also file specific applications for those programs, available directly from the program, and must submit a transcript which includes first semester sophomore grades. Please see separate sections of this handbook for more information on each of these programs.
A student who wishes to attend Dartmouth for a full year must attend for three trimesters, one of which is usually summer. A student who wishes to attend for one semester must attend for two trimesters - usually summer-fall or winter-spring. Full year students will receive eight Wellesley units for nine courses (three each trimester). Semester students will receive .91 Wellesley units per course for six courses (total: 5.4 Wellesley units). Students just interested in the summer term should note that summer school is not part of the 12 College Exchange. You would apply for the summer school on your own, in consultation with the Registrar's Office. The cost of attending Dartmouth is higher than Wellesley's cost, because the year - and the two-term semester option - are longer. If you are receiving Wellesley financial aid, please be aware of the fact that you will have to make up the cost differential yourself. Wellesley will not increase your aid if you exchange to Dartmouth.
The National Theater Institute is accredited by Connecticut College. Students interested in acting, directing, or design live for a semester with professional artists as a theater company. Plays are produced for local audiences and occasionally taken on tour.
A special NTI application and a transcript that includes semester I grades are required. In addition, you must file the regular 12 College application and the proposal to study away. An interview at NTI is required, although telephone interviews are possible. This is a one-semester program only.
All application material should be turned in to the Exchange Office.
Williams College accredits a program in American Maritime Studies at Mystic Seaport in Connecticut. Students with a special interest in the sea focus on man's relationship to the sea in its many aspects -historical, literary, artistic, political, economic and scientific. Students are housed in small groups in Seaport-owned houses and do their own housekeeping, including the preparation of meals. The semester includes a two week cruise on the research vessel Westward. In early fall, a representative from Mystic visits Wellesley (with a slide presentation) to meet with interested students. This is a one-semester program only.
A special Mystic application, along with a transcript that includes fall semester grades, is required. In addition, you must file the regular 12 College application and proposal to study away. An interview at Mystic is required - although telephone interviews are possible.
Wellesley students may participate in an exchange program with Spelman College, a distinguished historically Black, liberal arts college for women in Atlanta, Georgia. This program is open for one semester or two. There is an information sheet on the Spelman Exchange, which you may request from the 12 College Exchange Coordinator.
Applicants must have a 2.8 GPA. There is no assurance of work-study employment at Spelman. The Spelman Exchange Office makes acceptance decisions on a different schedule from the 12 College Exchange. Therefore, students applying to Spelman probably won't hear about acceptances until mid-March or later.
Wellesley students may participate in an exchange program with Mills College, a small women's college in Oakland, California that has a cross-registration program with the University of California at Berkeley. Students who attend Mills may take one course each semester at Berkeley. Wellesley financial aid is not transferable to the Mills exchange. If you are eligible for the Stafford/GSL Loan and/or the Pell Grant, the Financial Aid Office will facilitate your taking those funds to Mills by pursuing a special agreement with Mills.
Here at Wellesley, a random lottery for each school determines your rank. We then match our ranked students with the places offered by the host institution. We also maintain waiting lists and try to place unmatched students at second choice institutions.
The first or second Friday of February is "call day" among the institutions in the Exchange. By the following Friday, you should receive information about the status of your application. By mid-March, you should receive an acceptance letter from your host institution, to which you will probably have to respond by late-March or early April with a deposit. This timetable varies a bit from school to school, however.
Your Wellesley aid may be taken to all of the institutions with the exception of Mills College. Please note, however, that you are responsible for any costs that are higher than those at Wellesley. Your Wellesley aid cannot be increased to cover any additional expenses at an exchange institution.
Although work is part of Wellesley's financial aid package, students cannot be assured of a work-study job at their host college. The general situation is that if the exchange school is willing to pay 25% of a student's salary, Wellesley and the exchange school will process agreement papers, work-study contracts, and time cards through Wellesley. Students will send completed timecards to and receive checks from Wellesley. At the end of the semester, the exchange school is billed 25% of the student's earnings.
If you are thinking about doing work-study while you are on exchange, you MUST discuss your work plans with the Student Employment Coordinator at Wellesley before you leave campus.
If you successfully complete a full load of work at your host institution, you will receive four Wellesley units for a semester and eight Wellesley units for a full year, with the following exceptions:
Keep in mind that you must take liberal arts courses and not duplicate work done here at Wellesley. If you have any questions about particular courses, consult the Office of International Study or the Registrar.
The passing grade at the host institution will be used as the standard for transferring credit.
If there are courses you plan to take on exchange that you would like to count for distribution credit, file a Transfer of Credit form (available in the Registrar's Office) for each course involved. You should do this before you leave campus, if possible. For course approval for courses in your major, include them on your declaration of major form, which you will file spring of your sophomore year and on the confirmation of major form in the fall of your senior year.
Students wishing to take a course pass-fail or credit-non are subject to the same regulations that apply to the students at the college they are visiting. This means that Wellesley will accept whatever grade is acceptable at the host institution for "pass" or "credit".
Students electing Dartmouth's non-recording option for grades should read the information in the Dartmouth catalogue carefully and confer with your Class Dean or with the Registrar if you have questions.
No. Your Wellesley transcript will list the courses you took, where you took them, and the number of credits earned. If you need a transcript of your grades for graduate school, you will have to request that yourself from your host institution.
Only the grades earned at Wellesley will figure into your GPA. This includes first year grades, sophomore grades, and senior grades. For honors, only your sophomore and senior grades earned at Wellesley will count. Also for honors, if you are away junior year, only four of the last twenty-four units earned may be credit-non. If you only are away for one semester during your junior year, the grades earned the semester you are at Wellesley will, of course, count towards your GPA and towards honors.
The 12 College Exchange is a residence exchange and, except under special circumstances, students are expected to live in housing provided for them on the campus of the host institution. If you are planning to take Wellesley financial aid with you on exchange, aid is only applicable to on-campus housing.
The host institution will bill Wellesley students during the summer or semester preceding entrance. Fees at the various colleges are usually within a few hundred dollars of each other.
Students going to Spelman will make payments to Wellesley College but will be billed at Spelman rates.