New Students

New Student Action II Greetings from Dean O'Hara

Dear New Students,

In a few short weeks you will be joining us here at Amherst College. We are getting ready for you!  For both first year students and new transfer students, the name of your Orientation Advisor is listed on AC_Data.  First year students will also see their First Year Seminar assignment. Over 90% of First Year Students got into one of your top three FYSE choices.

This last summer e-mail directs you to New Student Action II  where you will find instructions for accessing the Course Catalog as you begin to put together your draft schedule for the Fall semester. You will meet with your Orientation Advisor on Tuesday August 27th.  Your task is to think about what you hope to accomplish here at Amherst College, and on the basis of that, identify at least six potential courses that will help you to reach these goals.  When you leave your advisor’s office, you will have a set of “approved” preferred courses, from which you will choose three (first year students) or four (transfers) to officially register after you visit with the Registrar’s staff.

It is a challenge for many new students to know the proper starting class for them. Personalized placement recommendations have been made for you by the faculty in Math and Chemistry and should be available to you in AC_Data under "Tests and Placement." These recommendations are based on your performance on standardized tests, your transcript, and other indices in the materials you have sent to us.  Several departments give placement exams during Orientation should you wish to "place out" of an introductory course based on your knowledge or past experience.  You should consult department web pages on placement to discover  the most up-to-date information about study in these disciplines.

While an electronic version of the Orientation schedule can be found online, and you will be given a hard copy at check in on Sunday morning, August 25th  starting at 9 AM in Converse Hall, we will also be listing all of the Orientation events on your Calendar in your My Amherst page (check the upper right hand corner of the College's main webpage) shortly. 

Thank you so much for your participation in the e-CHECKUP TO GO program.  As of this writing, nearly ¾ of you have already responded, but we are still shy of full compliance.  Please don’t delay your Orientation check-in on August 25th!  Do it today!  Your voice matters to us - early feedback revealed a lack of sufficient sensitivity in some of the questions with respect to an implied causal link between alcohol and sexual assault. After conversation with the professional staff at eCHECKUP TO GO, the questions have been rewritten.  Thank you to those who took the time to give us this feedback. 

Many members of the College community have taken part in planning Orientation, and many more will be engaged in carrying it out. All of us – members of the faculty, staff, administration, and student body – hope it will prove a pleasant and rewarding period for you. I look forward to greeting you here at Amherst in a few weeks. I hope the remaining days of your summer are pleasant ones, and that you share my excitement about the beginning of the Fall term.


The Amherst Women's Network has set up a new mentorship program that will pair entering women students of the class of 2017 with upperclasswomen mentors.  Any new student who is interested is encouraged to email Additionally, you can follow the Amherst Women's Network on Twitter, @ACWomensNetwork, or find them on Facebook:

If you haven’t already done so, upper class students want you to know that you can get the inside scoop on the life at Amherst by signing into the official Facebook page for the class of 2017, here:

 Here’s some news from our Community Engagement Outreach Trips (CEOT).  There is still time to sign up for the Orienation Events August 28th-31st.




Important Dates and Deadlines: Please check back for updates


Fri, May 30, 2014

Amherst E-Mail accounts activated for new students

Please be aware that all students are assigned an official Amherst College email address, and all official college communications are sent to this email address. Your email address will be included in in your welcome E-Mail information. At Amherst College, we rely on electronic communications with students, and it is the College’s policy that email be an official mechanism for administrative offices and faculty to communicate with students, so that we can provide you with accurate and timely information about matters which affect you, as well as important aspects of your academic work.

Welcome E-Mail to New Students

You will receive your first email from Dean of New Students about your arrival at Amherst and Orientation. That email will have a great amount of information for you to read, and several required forms to complete. The May 31st email will provide answers and guidance about your arrival at Amherst and the various things which you and your family need to know before you get here. It will also guide you as you begin to think about what courses you might like to take during your first semester – these ideas will be finalized when you meet with a faculty advisor during Orientation.

Sun, Jun 1, 2014

Deadline: Photo for Student ID

The Office of Public Affairs contacted incoming students to request a photo by June 1.

Beginning April 1, you’ll be able to log in to to create your own web page; upload text,photos and other content; meet classmates with similar interests; and browse a photo gallery of your class.

To populate the photo gallery, we need your photo! (This picture will also be used as your I.D. picture.
Submitting your photo now means that you won’t have to stand in the I.D. photo line at Orientation.)

Sun, Jun 15, 2014

Deadline: First Year Housing Questionaire

The questionnaire is designed to give us information about personal habits and environmental preferences. The information that you provide will help us to determine your housing assignment and your future roommate. It is important you take your time to go through the questionnaire as carefully and as honestly as possible.

Academic, Family, and Housing Questionnaires: Deadline, June 15, 2014

These are required forms in ACData which must be completed. If you are unable to complete these forms online, please feel free to the call the Dean of Students Office at 1-413-542-2336 to request assistance.

Sat, Jul 5, 2014

Health Forms: Deadline, July 5, 2014

The Health Forms are in the Portable Document Format (PDF), and you must print, complete, and return these forms to Health Services via mail, fax, or as email attachments. These forms are required components of your pre-registration medical file at Amherst College. Massachusetts Law requires up-to-date immunizations or blood tests verifying immunity.