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Williams College Admissions

williams college

Get Into Williams College

About Williams College

Williams College is a private liberal arts college located in Williamstown, Massachusetts, a small town in the Berkshires. Established in 1793, Williams is one of the oldest colleges in the country and has an enrollment of 2,061 undergraduate students. This year, Williams earned the #1 spot in the annual U.S. News & World Report ranking of “Best Liberal Arts Colleges” and 1st among liberal arts colleges in the 2019 Forbes Magazine ranking of America’s Top Colleges. Although the school was originally founded as a men’s college, women were first admitted in 1971 and, in the 1960s, the college’s fraternities were abolished.

Williams has a number of unique opportunities within their curriculum like Winter Study, the Difference, Power, and Equity requirement, and a number of interdisciplinary opportunities available within the more than 50 areas of study across the humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences. It utilizes a 4-1-4-based academic calendar so that, each January, students can pursue a single subject on a pass/fail basis. The Winter Study offerings also include short-term trips and independent research as well as fieldwork and internships.

Williams prides itself on its small class sizes, with a student-teacher ratio of 7:1, and its Oxford-style tutorials, which rely heavily on student participation. Since almost all students are required to live on campus, there is a palpable sense of community both in the classroom and in the dormitories. Williams is a member of the Division III New England Small College Athletic Conference and, in addition to 32 varsity teams, it has an active club and intramural sports program. More than 60% of Williams’ students compete on at least one varsity, junior varsity, or club team.

Although Williams has a focus on undergraduate teaching, there are roughly 50 graduate students who are enrolled in one of the two graduate-level programs. The Center for Development Economics (CDE) at Williams offers an intensive, one-year master’s degree program designed for economists from low and middle-income countries who have some practical experience. The second program, the Williams Graduate Program in the History of Art, is administered in conjunction with the Clark Art Institute and has a two-year curriculum that combines academic course work, internships, workshops and international travel.

Applying to Williams

As one of the most selective colleges in the country, Williams admits fewer than one in five applicants. Williams accepts the Common Application, the Coalition Application, or the QuestBridge application. There is also an optional Williams Writing Supplement that requires an additional essay. While they claim there are no firm requirements for admission, competitive candidates typically study English, math, natural science, foreign language and social studies in four-year sequences and present a distinguished record throughout their secondary school career.

If Williams is your first-choice college, you may apply under the binding Early Decision program. Early Decision applicants may submit an Early Decision application to only one institution and if admitted under Early Decision are expected to withdraw all other college applications. You may also apply under the non-binding Regular Decision plan. If admitted, you have until May 1 to accept your place in the class.

Interested applicants are encouraged to visit the Williams campus, which is an hour’s drive from Albany International Airport/Rensselaer Train Station and three hours from Boston and New York City. Although there are no on-campus interviews offered, you can attend a campus tour and information session, attend a class, or stay overnight. If you cannot afford to visit Williams, you can apply for the Windows on Williams (WOW) program, which gives high school seniors the opportunity to spend three all-expenses-paid days at Williams. Preference is given to high-achieving students who couldn’t otherwise afford to visit Williams. This commitment to economic diversity is also seen in Williams’ financial aid program. Admission decisions are made without considering the U.S. students’ financial needs and the college provides grants and other assistance to meet 100% of the demonstrated financial need of every student, which alleviates debt levels for graduating seniors.

Williams College Admissions Wrap Up

Williams received a staggering number of applications in 2019-2020, consistent with previous years. Over 9,700 students applied, and only 1,205 were accepted into the Class of 2023. Of those, about 550 are expected to enroll for the fall semester. This year’s 12.4% acceptance rate is comparable to last year’s 12.2% acceptance rate. In the early decision round, 688 students applied and 37% were offered admission. This marks a slight dip in the number of early applicants compared to previous years (a record of 728 applied ED in 2017). About 92% of accepted applicants, who represent 893 high schools, were in the top 10% of their high school graduation class. Their average scores on the SAT were 733 in evidence-based reading and writing and 749 in math. Their average super-scored ACT was 33.

Of those admitted, 134 are international students, representing 52 different nationalities. Among American students, 58% identify as students of color and 20% are first-generation college students. Williams also recorded gender diversity this year and noted that, of the admitted students, a total of 515 identify as men, 597 as women, three identify as trans or transgender, four as nonbinary, and six as another identity.

Top Tier Admissions Can Help You Get Into Williams:

“Once again, I am so impressed with your program. I am amazed at the sheer 
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A. (a great pairing for her!).  

I know how hard each of you worked this week; I hope you get to enjoy some
 well-deserved R&R!” –N.G., Application Boot Camp parent
"G is excited to go to her first choice, the University of Miami! She continues to say that Application Boot Camp was the best investment we ever made for her education." –R.J., Application Boot Camp parent
"I liked the process of having multiple people read my essays before finalizing a draft. This made me confident that my essays were clear and concise while also captivating to a diverse audience. Everyone was also patient and encouraging. Boot Camp took away so much stress coming into Senior Fall, allowing me to focus on my academics and earning my highest term average ever." –S.A., Application Boot Camp student
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-Parent of Application Boot Camp (Dartmouth) students
"Thank you so much for your help and guidance. I wouldn't have been able to do it without you and the Top Tier Admissions Team! I'm still in between UPenn and Georgetown, but I will make sure to visit both." –S.I., Application Boot Camp student
"Clearly, Application Bootcamp and Top Tier took a lot of anxiety out of the whole situation. Our children know a number of kids who did not get into their top choice ED school, only to be devastated and stressed as they are without a plan for ED II and regular decision and have not worked on a range of essays for other schools. So while F & J’s EA-only strategy is not for everyone but made sense for them since they did not have a clear lead school when they were applying, being prepared made all the difference. The help Bootcamp provided in honing their voice and words into essays that reflect their intent was fantastic.In the end, it is all about having choices they are happy with, and I am happy to say they both have those now!"–F.A., parent of Application Boot Camp students
"E., I just wanted to let you know that I got into Barnard Early Decision! Thank you for everything you have done!!! I can’t tell you how much I appreciate everything you did for me! Thank You!!" - H.L., Personal Boot Camp student
Barnard, Class of 2023
"I wanted to say thank you again for all your help! I got into UPenn, Cornell, Barnard, Wellesley, Wesleyan, Tufts, University of Michigan, and Wake Forest, and am waiting to hear from Georgetown; I think I'm leaning towards UPenn. Thank  you so much for all your guidance; I don't think I could have done it without your help!" --I.R., Application Boot Camp student
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Y.R.
"Boot Camp was the most incredible experience. It made me push myself into thinking about my future and prepared me to send in all my applications. I am so thankful that I got the help I needed at Boot Camp because it made my application process effortless once I had completed my essays. I think that the colleges were able to clearly see my goals and ambitions through the writing of my essays. I believe this helped me have a very successful application process." –P.K., Application Boot Camp student
Barnard Class of 2022
"I just wanted to say thank you for all the help that I received during Boot Camp! I was able to do so much work and gain so much knowledge about the procedure of applying to college. I am so blessed to have had you as my best resources. I will definitely keep you posted when I start hearing from schools and thank you very much for all your help and feedback once again.” – L.L, Application Boot Camp student
"If there is any reference or feedback you ever want for a prospective client for Boot Camp, please send them my way. You and everyone handled the students so well - firmly, maturely, but with care and patience knowing this is a time of great pressure and anxiety for them. Having them finish with smiles, prepared for the next steps, and better yet - excited for the next chapter of their lives - is wonderful. I would tell anyone considering the program that for our children, they felt it was valuable, and for us, it delivers on what it promises - getting children ready, well-positioned, and less anxious for their application process." – S.P., parent of Application Boot Camp student
"I just wanted to send you a note of personal and heartfelt thanks for supporting B in Boot Camp. My wife was touched and very appreciative of your approach ('M. is a good soul.') and B left feeling challenged, but also confident, whole and supported. You probably figured out that she’s quite different from her brother! She talks about you warmly - you definitely made a fan and friend! Anyway, thanks for your personal, caring touch. She’s excited about what lies ahead." – J.T., parent of Application Boot Camp student
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"I just wanted to let you know that I was accepted ED to Tulane!!  J, I want to thank you for all the time and effort you put in to working with me both in Boston as well as over the last few months.  M., I am so thankful I had the opportunity to go to Boot Camp. It was incredibly valuable. In fact, the head of college counseling at my high school said my 'Why Tulane' essay was the best she has ever seen!" – C.T., Application Boot Camp student
Tulane Class of 2023
"We are so happy to report that R was just accepted ED to Williams College!! Thank you so much for everything that you did to help her over the past year! She is thrilled!!" –T.S. & F.S., parents of Application Boot Camp student
Williams Class of 2023
"I am emailing you to let you both know that I have been accepted to the University of Miami and will be attending there in the fall! It's been a dream of mine for a long time and I couldn't be happier about it. I wanted to thank you again so much for your help and guidance. I really don't think I could have done this without you guys and I will be forever grateful. Your program is truly amazing and I am lucky I attended. Thank you again." –P.T., Application Boot Camp student
University of Miami Class of 2023
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"We want to let you know that S was accepted into Brown. We are thrilled for him and grateful for all your help and support! He also got into UT Austin!" – W.L., parent of Application Boot Camp student

Brown Class of 2023

"K applied ED to Franklin & Marshall and was admitted thanks to your help. They told his high school dean that they were very impressed by the quality of his application. Thanks for your help and all you've done for our family. P continues to thrive at Haverford as a junior." – A.K., parent of Application Boot Camp student(s)

"I wanted to let you know that I have been accepted by my first-choice school — the College of William & Mary! Thank you for your guidance in this process. I couldn’t be happier!" – M.J., Application Boot Camp student

College of William & Mary, Class of 2023
"This is to let you know that H. was accepted at Cornell!!  Cornell was her early decision school, and we learned that she got in this week. Thanks again to M., M., K., M., and the amazing Top Tier team! We very much appreciate all your help and support." – Application Boot Camp parent
"I GOT IN ED to Dartmouth! I am so grateful for all your support and the amazing ABC you run. I hope that other ABC students got good news as well! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!! And a HUGE thanks all the TTA staff who helped guide me with my essays! I couldn't have done this without you guys! GO BIG GREEN!!!" - Application Boot Camp student
"R got accepted to Dartmouth! We are overjoyed. Thank you for all your guidance and prepping." – Application Boot Camp parent, Dartmouth
"P was accepted to Stanford (REA) last Friday! She attended ABC this summer as you know and couldn’t have done it without your team. Thank you so much for all your help. I have already referred my brother who has a 10th grader. Thanks again!" – Application Boot Camp parent, Stanford
"On behalf of S, I am pleased to share that she has been accepted to Dartmouth!  THANK YOU, for all you and your colleagues at Top Tier did to assist S with this accomplishment. Your guidance and counsel is truly invaluable. S is extremely happy and very excited about her future at Dartmouth College! She is both honored and humbled. Top Tier played a big part in her success!" – Application Boot Camp parent, Dartmouth
“We would like to personally thank you for your help in preparing P. and S. in the college admissions process. Boot Camp provided invaluable guidance. Those four days were a very productive and extremely worthwhile time. We are thrilled they are starting senior year stress-free in terms of the college application process. Finally, thank you a ton for helping them both from the very beginning and we feel extremely fortunate to have worked with you.” –A.R., Parents of two Application Boot Camp Students
“I am amazed at how much S. got done this week AND he was even smiling when we left!” –P.N., Parent of Application Boot Camp Student
“What a duo you are! Thanks again for your support, patience, and understanding this past week. C. is confident and rejuvenated but realistic. He will consider all that you have said when reaching his strategic decisions.” –T.A., Parent of Application Boot Camp Student
“My wife just texted me that R’s essays are fantastic! Thank you for all the great advice.” –A.F., parent of Application Boot Camp Student

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