Accessibility and Disability Resources offers accommodations for students with temporary and permanent disabilities.
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.
All students deserve equity in how they are mentored, sponsored, supported, and empowered to experience Wellesley. We are dedicated to ensuring that each of our students is able to take advantage of Wellesley's rich learning and living environment.
—Paula A. Johnson, president of Wellesley College
A diversity of viewpoints and life experiences produces better outcomes not only in the classroom, but also well into adulthood. ... Diversity enhances the academic and life experience for every student and graduate and for society overall.
—Joy St. John, dean of admission and financial aid
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 47% percent of students’ homes; over 30 languages are spoken 💬 on campus.
- 52 percent of the class of 2023 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 $52,000.
- 18 percent of students in the class of 2023 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.
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.
—Marissa Sterrett, assistant director of admission
“I come from a strong community made up of people who look out for each other always, and when applying to colleges and visiting them that is what I had in mind constantly. When I visited Wellesley for the Fall Diversity program I knew that that strong community existed and I wanted to be a part of it — and do my part to nurture and sustain that community as well.”
—Briana '22, diversity team intern
“The one thing I had always heard about Wellesley before I arrived was the strong “network.” I have yet to look for jobs or take advantage of said network, but one thing I have noticed even now is how involved alumni are regarding the happenings on campus and the wellbeing of students. It took me a while to try and encapsulate the experience, but it was once explained to me that at the core of every individual at Wellesley is a certain intenseness of purpose. I feel that this is the essence of Wellesley, and it speaks to our reputation in the outside world. Our network is only as strong as our community. I feel connected to my mentors and peers in a way that reassures me that I will always have backing, even beyond the 4 years that I am here. I will always have someone to guide me in my endeavors and keep me grounded. So while I might have come here for the many accolades that Wellesley boasts on paper, I have found it to be a very liberating experience, cushioned with wisdom and support.”
—Sarah '23, diversity team intern
“I applied to Wellesley through Questbridge and before becoming a Questbridge Finalist, I did not know Wellesley existed. What really drew me to Wellesley were the letters I received from current students and the ability to visit with the travel grant. My first time stepping onto campus it immediately felt like a place I could call home for the next four years of my life. Having the opportunity to explore campus, get to know the resources available to me, and attend an open Ethos meeting allowed me to see that Wellesley was an environment that I could thrive in.”
—Zaria '23, diversity team intern
“The first time I stepped foot on Wellesley's campus, I vividly remember telling my mom by the Founders parking lot on that rainy April day that I had to be here and needed to get off the waitlist. Part of me knew, in that moment, that Wellesley was for me, largely because I found something I had been searching for but had yet to find at my predominantly white high school: a sense of comfort. As a person of color, it was refreshing to hear students speaking frankly about their experiences and finding intersections between race and the class topic. And I can confidently say that I have found my community on campus and that it continues to make me feel safe and welcomed.”
—Joni '23, diversity team intern
“What was unique about Wellesley was its holistic approach to an undergraduate education. As an Asian-American, I fell in love with its belief that, without exposure to a diverse pool of students, we lose the opportunity to develop essential qualities such as empathy, perspective, and awareness. At Wellesley, education doesn't end once you leave the classroom—it begins. So I knew as soon as I visited Wellesley that I would never have to justify why I belonged there.”
—Haley '24, diversity team intern
“As a Latinx, low-income, first gen student, I felt ostracized coming from a predominantly white and affluent high school. Despite feeling lost, I always knew that I needed to go to a college that not only catered to my needs, but also introduced me to people of backgrounds both similar to mine and completely opposite. I knew by the time college came around that I needed to break out of the box I had been confined in for most of my life. Without much contemplation, I knew that Wellesley was exactly what I had been searching for; its nurturing environment and efforts to be inclusive for all immediately captured me. I am beyond grateful to call this campus my new home for the next four years, and am certain that Wellesley will give me the tools to help me take on the obstacles that lay ahead.”
—Jocelyn '24, diversity team intern
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 Latinx and Asian descent.
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.
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.
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.