Dual Degree with Olin

The Olin-Wellesley 4+1 program enables a Wellesley student who is accepted to the program to earn a B.A. degree from Wellesley in four years, followed by a B.S. degree from Olin College at the end of the fifth year.  A double-degree candidate must fulfill the requirements for a degree at both institutions. During her time at Wellesley, an interested Wellesley student should plan to have completed all of Olin’s math and science prerequisites as well as at least five engineering courses toward her Olin degree.  In their fifth year, 4+1 students enroll at Olin College and spend both semesters in residence there, completing major requirements as well as the senior capstone project. An interested Wellesley student must also first apply at Wellesley to be a candidate for the program. If accepted by the Wellesley committee, she then applies to Olin.  Members of the class of 2018 should complete these steps during the fall of their junior year (fall 2016).  Members of the class of 2017 may choose to complete these steps in either the fall of their junior or senior years (fall 2015 or fall 2016).

Students should be aware of the financial aid implications of this program, because during the fifth year, double-degree candidates are governed by Olin’s financial aid policy (see FAQ).

Application Procedure

Interested students should:

  • schedule a meeting with Class Dean Alison Black and Olin Professor David Barrett to explore options
  • take one of Wellesley’s introductory engineering courses  and appropriate math and science courses each semester
  • become familiar with prospective departments at Olin by talking with faculty members there and by taking courses at Olin. 
  • complete the Application for Wellesley Support and submit that to Class Dean Alison Black by October 15 of the senior year (class of 2017) or junior year (class of 2018). 

Wellesley Support

Wellesley will indicate to Olin its support for the candidacy of an applicant appropriate for this program.  An applicant should work with Class Dean Alison Black to develop her plans and determine whether she is an appropriate candidate and can be supported in this way.  A student appropriate for support has a grade point average of at least 3.5, no grade below a B in math or sciences courses, and has taken at least four courses at Olin in her area of proposed study by the end of the fall of the senior year.  Students should submit the Application for Wellesley Support  to Class Dean Alison Black, who together with Professor Ducas and other faculty members as appropriate to the student’s proposed plan of study, will determine whether Wellesley supports her application to this program.  The application includes an essay about the student’s interest in this program, describing her proposed major plans at Wellesley and Olin, her plans for a career in engineering (e.g. graduate school, work right away after college, or as grounding for some other career); and importantly why she wants to do the double degree program (for example, rather than do a four year science or math major at Wellesley plus a coherent package of courses at Olin and/or MIT).

The application is due at Olin by December 1 in the fall of the junior year (class of 2018).  The class of 2017 may apply to Olin during the fall of their senior or junior year.  This application involves an essay and recommendations, so a student should allow ample time for obtaining letters of recommendation, including at least one from an Olin faculty member. Acceptances are announced by Olin during the first week of February.

For further information, contact:

Class Dean Alison Black at Wellesley, 781.283.3152, ablack3@wellesley.edu
Professor Ted Ducas at Wellesley, 781.283.3047, tducas@wellesley.edu
Professor David Barrett at Olin, 781.292.2556, david.barrett@olin.edu
Professor Amy Banzaert at Wellesley, 781.283.3756, abanzaer@wellesley.edu
Professor Lyn Turbak at Wellesley, 781.283.3049, fturbak@wellesley.edu
Professor Robbie Berg at Wellesley, 781.283.3110, rberg@wellesley.edu

Please see this FAQ for answers to some common questions about the dual degree program with Olin.