Diversity & Inclusion

It’s equitable, inclusive, and empowering. It’s home.

Wellesley was founded on the radical idea that women have an equal right to the best education in the country. We still believe—in fact, we know from experience—that the boldest ideas, the brightest solutions, and the healthiest communities draw on a range of voices, perspectives, and experiences.

We’re dedicated to ensuring that all Wellesley students have an equal opportunity to flourish, no matter their race, ethnicity, religion, nationality, physical ability, or any other category that can be used to divide people.

We’re diverse in many ways
Students at a concert

The Mix

A mere sample of the brilliant variety of experiences in our community:

  • Wellesley students come from all 50 states 🇺🇸, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. They hail from 87 countries of citizenship and 59 countries of residence.
  • At least one language other than English is spoken in 43 percent of students’ homes; over 30 languages are spoken 💬 on campus.
  • 49 percent of the class of 2022 identify as students of color ✍🏻✍🏼✍🏽✍🏾✍🏿
  • Nearly 60 percent of our students receive financial aid 💵; the average annual scholarship (that does not need to be repaid) is $47,000.
  • 17 percent of students in the class of 2022 will be the first generation in their families to graduate 🎓 from college.
  • From rainbow 🌈 “Safe Space” stickers on office doors to out-and-proud First-Year Mentors, Wellesley offers many informal mentoring and advising resources for its LGBTQ students and their allies.
  • 13 religious organizations ✝️✡️☸️☪️☯️🛐serve students from agnostic to Zoroastrian and everything in between!
  • Our Elizabeth Kaiser Davis Degree Program and transfer program welcome students who have taken many different 📓 educational journeys.
group attempt at a can-can high kick

Diversity Recruitment Team Outreach

Our Diversity Recruitment Team is a group of staff and students who are committed to recruiting and enrolling students from underrepresented backgrounds. They organize the travel grant program that brings bright, deserving students to campus, engage with community-based organizations and high school counselors around the country, hang out with the dozens of cultural organizations on campus, and help connect prospective and current students.

Ask a student about the ways in which the team can support you in the application process.

How we make Wellesley work for you
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A few of our most-used, best-loved campus resources

Acorns, a renovated house overlooking Lake Waban, includes meeting space, a kitchen, and offices for advisors to students of Asian descent, Latinx students, and LGBTQ+ students.

Disability Services offers accommodations for students with temporary and permanent disabilities.

 

Harambee House is home to Ethos, a group for students of African descent, which recently celebrated its 50th anniversary!

 

LGBTQ+ Services offers students a host of organizations, activities, and events.

 

Slater International Center is a gathering place for international students (about 10% of our student body) and students interested in global culture.

The Community Action Network hosts discussions, workshops, and events that promote a more nuanced, textured understanding of equity and inclusion.

The First Generation Network offers first-generation college students a supportive community, regular events, and mentorship from faculty, staff, and alumnae.

The Houghton Chapel and Multifaith Center is home to 17 weekly services, 8 religious and spiritual chaplains, and our Office of Religious and Spiritual Life.

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Partnerships with progressive organizations around the world

Chicago Scholars is leading a powerful movement to guide a critical mass of Chicago’s talented youth into college and career success. Chicago Scholars are academically driven, first-generation college students from under-resourced communities who do not have the social capital or informational resources necessary to help them navigate the unfamiliar, complex transitions into college, through college, and beyond to a career. As a Platinum College Partner with the Chicago Scholars program in Cook County, Wellesley participates in special student recruitment events in the Chicago area. Partners are dedicated to supporting Scholars with financial support, academic advising, and leadership opportunities. We also meet 100 percent of demonstrated financial need as well as provide additional opportunities.

Wellesley is among the diverse coalition of public and private colleges and universities nationwide to participate in the Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success. The coalition developed a new application as well as a free platform of online tools to streamline the experience of planning for and applying to college and to provide low-income students with better information about high-quality, low-cost college options.

Wellesley is proud to be a QuestBridge partner school. This nonprofit organization links motivated high-achieving, low-income students with educational and scholarship opportunities at some of the nation’s best colleges. QuestBridge believes that attending a top college can be affordable, and the organization is committed to helping students attain the college education they deserve.

Say Yes to Education In joining the Say Yes Higher Education Compact, Wellesley, as well as other private colleges and universities across the country, agree to ensure that most students from Say Yes communities whose annual family income is at or below $75,000 are able to attend college tuition-free.

The Posse Foundation places students in posses—groups of 10 students—to help foster academic excellence within the institutions that have awarded the selected students a four-year full-tuition leadership scholarship. Wellesley is proud to be Houston’s second STEM Program partner, and the 11th STEM partner nationally, welcoming our first Posse to campus in 2017.

United World Colleges (UWC) schools, colleges, and programs deliver a challenging and transformational educational experience to a diverse cross-section of students, inspiring them to create a more peaceful and sustainable future. UWC comprises 16 international schools and colleges located in North America, Africa, Asia, Europe, and South America; national committees in more than 150 countries; and a series of short educational programs. Learn about the Davis-United World College Scholars Program at Wellesley.

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Travel grants

Travel grants to Discover Wellesley Weekend

Rising high school seniors who are interested in discovering Wellesley’s diverse and inclusive community can apply for a travel grant to this fall program. Wellesley encourages and prioritizes applicants who are from underrepresented cultural backgrounds such as African American, Asian American, Latina American, and Native American; first-generation students; and/or students from other underrepresented communities and regions. The travel grant program aims to support applicants who may otherwise be unable to visit campus. See Discover Wellesley, the Fall Travel Grant and Travel Grant FAQs.

Travel grants to Spring Open Campus

Wellesley offers travel grants to admitted students, most with high financial need, to Spring Open Campus in April, where they attend classes and panels, tour campus, and experience a glimpse of life at Wellesley.

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Exceptional financial aid

We meet 100 percent of our students’ calculated need, ensuring that every admitted student can afford to attend Wellesley. Our MyinTuition calculator can give you a rough estimate of the aid you’d expect to receive if you attend Wellesley. On average, students receive $47,000 in grants that don’t require repayment. Students graduate with less than half the average national student debt.

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This is what leadership looks like.

A lot like you, most likely.