International Student Information

As one of the best liberal arts colleges in the nation, we celebrate our students with one-on-one faculty support and personalized financial aid. U.S. News & World Report recently recognized us for our campus diversity and social mobility, so prepare to be challenged to embrace new perspectives and aspire to a bright future!

Apply to Wells College as an International Student

Apply Using the Wells Application

Apply Using the Common Application

Important Deadlines 

Required Application Materials

All documents must be translated into English.

  • Official transcripts/mark sheets/records of academic achievement in secondary school
  • One (1) letter of recommendation from your school counselor, headmaster or principal
  • One (1) photocopy of your passport. Please copy only the page that contains your photo and information.
  • One (1) Certification of Finance. All international applicants must document their ability to meet all educational and living expenses for the first year of intended study before a Form I-20 visa eligibility certificate can be issued. Please complete this form and attach the appropriate documentation required. such as an official bank statement. 
  • Demonstration of English Proficiency. If English is not your native language, you must demonstrate English proficiency by submitting official results of one of the following exams:
    • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language): Wells College requires a score of 80 or higher (Internet-based)
    • IELTS (International English Language Testing System): Wells College requires a minimum score of 6.5
    • PTE Academic: Wells College requires a minimum score of 55
    • SAT scores can be submitted in lieu of the above exams only if your Evidence-Based Reading scores demonstrate adequate English language proficiency.
    • The Duolingo English Test: Wells College requires a minimum score of 100
    • Applicants whose native language/primary language of instruction is English: If you have completed your secondary education in English, speak English as a first language, or are from a country where English is the primary language, then you may not be required to submit English proficiency test scores. Please review the English Language Proficiency Testing Waiver Country List or email the Admissions Office to check if you are exempt.
    • International high school students in the United States: If you are currently an international student enrolled in a high school in the United States, you may submit SAT scores in lieu of TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic scores. The English language proficiency testing requirement may be waived if you have attended at least two (2) years of instruction at a U.S. high school.
    • Test scores must be submitted to Wells by the official testing agency, either electronically or by paper. Please be sure to designate Wells as the recipient of your test scores. The Wells College codes are as follows:

      SAT: 002971
      ACT: 002988

Optional Materials (submission for the following is not required in order for your application to be considered complete)

  • To help us better understand you as an individual, we welcome any material that showcases your unique personality and talents. These can be but are not limited to: Personal essays, a résumé, creative portfolio, and/or video recording of a musical or athletic performance. You can choose to submit one or several!
  • AP scores (scores of 3, 4, and 5 are accepted)
  • One (1) letter of recommendation from a teacher
Why Wells?

Wells College prepares students for successful careers after graduation and provides them with useful skills that they can take anywhere in the world. As a student at Wells, you will receive a well-rounded education that balances classroom theory with an array of hands-on opportunities, including internships and capstone research projects. Wells' incredible focus on student-centered teaching and learning means that all students establish close relationships with professors in small classes. Faculty members serve as advisors and mentors, helping students schedule classes, secure internships, and prepare for graduate school and future careers. 


Graduate and professional schools and employers recognize the value of the liberal arts in preparing students for their future careers. In addition to providing an education in a specific field, Wells prepares students to anticipate the methods and realities of their professional environment and continue to learn and explore throughout their lives.


With small class sizes and attentive professors, Wells students interact personally with their professors who are available to provide individualized instruction and assistance based on the student's needs. Wells also appoints each student a faculty advisor to assist throughout each semester with course and schedule planning; advisors can be changed based on preference or area of study.


Wells students benefit from cross-registration opportunities and program partnerships the College holds with other institutions, such as Cornell University, Ithaca College, the University of Rochester, Clarkson University, and Columbia University.

Where is Wells College?

Wells College is located on the shores of Cayuga Lake in the beautiful, scenic Finger Lakes region of upstate New York. Free transportation is available to shuttle students to Ithaca and nearby major airports. From Ithaca, students can take advantage of a variety of bus lines and other travel options. Here is the approximate time it takes to reach our campus from the following major cities:

    • 30 minutes from Ithaca, NY
    • 60 minutes from Syracuse, NY
    • 90 minutes from Rochester, NY
    • 4.5 hours from New York City, NY
    • 4.5 hours from Philadelphia, PA
    • 5.5 hours from Boston, MA

Take the virtual tour and be transported to the middle of our beautiful campus on a bright summer day! Look inside classrooms, professor's offices, residence halls, athletic facilities, and more. Our campus is breathtaking no matter the season.

Virtual Tour

Cost of Attendance and Scholarships

Tuition and Other Costs

See the Tution & Aid page for the most up-to-date information regarding cost of attendance at Wells. Please note that international students should budget for travel expenses in addition to the cost of attendance.


With their unique backgrounds and perspectives, international students are an invaluable part of the Wells College community and contribute to a global living and learning environment. To support international students in their pursuit of higher education in the United States, Wells College automatically considers every international applicant for a scholarship to contribute towards cost of attending.

The Provost's Scholarships are awarded based on the applicant's academic record, and can range between $5,000 - $15,000 (USD).

Global Leadership Awards are granted to students who demonstrate exemplary leadership qualities and outstanding service to their local communities outside of the classroom. In addition to the International Student Scholarship (outlined above), students who are chosen for the Global Citizenship Award will receive a bonus award of $2,000 (USD).

Canadian Provincial Scholarships are automatically given to students from Canada with a cumulative academic standing of 85 or higher. In addition to the International Student Scholarship (outlined above), students who qualify for the Canadian Provincial Scholarship will receive a bonus award of $2,000 (USD).

Accepted Students

Once accepted to Wells College, international students must submit the following:

  • A non-refundable $300 USD enrollment deposit*
  • (If not yet already submitted) A Certification of Finance Form indicating an ability to pay the costs with all supporting documentation, such as bank statements, etc
  • A photocopy of the ID section of your passport

Form I-20 and F-1 Visa

After Wells has received your non-refundable* enrollment deposit ($300 USD) and the Certification of Finances with supporting documentation, we will review your file to issue a Form I-20. You will need the I-20 to apply for an F-1 visa stamp at a U.S. Consulate.

Innovative Programs in Business and Sustainability

The Sullivan Center for Business and Entrepreneurship
The business and entrepreneurship program at Wells draws on the College's long-standing strengths of interdisciplinary studies and hands-on learning. Integrated with the liberal arts, the Center provides students the opportunity to study the fundamentals. In addition, the Center offers a range of internship partnerships with regional and College-owned businesses, as well as alumni. Under the auspices of the Susan Wray Sullivan '51 and Pike H. Sullivan Center for Business and Entrepreneurship, the business program includes academic programs in management and economics, as well as the Innovation Lab, a unique undergraduate center for studies in design theory. Each year the Center hosts an Entrepreneurship Week which includes profit and not-for-profit entrepreneurship contests with cash prizes.

The Center for Sustainability and the Environment
One of the only undergraduate programs in the United States that offers a generalist perspective in sustainability, the sustainability program at Wells College challenges students to learn about food, energy, water use, consumer habits, environmental toxins, lifestlye choices, and more that impact the environment, society, and economy. The curriculum focuses on skill-building and establishing professional connections that help further students' professional careers and advanced studies after graduation. The Center for Sustainbility and the Environment helps students identify relevant internships and research projects that enhance their classroom education.

Prepare for Advanced Degress

3/2 and 4+1 programs
Students at Wells may also take advantage of our 3/2 and 4+1 Articulation Programs. Within five years, you can earn both a B.A. from Wells and a professional degree from one of these affiliated universities: University of Rochester (teacher education, nursing); Clarkson University (business administration, engineering); and Columbia University (engineering).

Pre-law and pre-health advising
In addition to the business and engineering programs, with close assistance from faculty advisors, students who choose law or health professions are well-prepared to pursue advanced studies in those areas.

Graduate study
Wells graduates are found in the graduate studies programs of institutions including the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Cornell University, New York University, Boston College, Yale University, Gannon University, Johns Hopkins University, Georgetown University, and many others.

Capstone Experiences

Faculty advisors guide Wells students through their final-year capstone projects, referred to as the "senior thesis." Throughout the project, students work one-on-one with their advisor, receiving personal attention during the planning, research, writing, and production. The thesis represents the culmination of a student's learning and helps prepare the student for the expectations and demands of professional school or career situations. Outstanding students are often selected to present their theses or other significant research projects to the academic world outside of Wells. For instance, Wells regularly sends students to the National Conference on Undergraduate Research, covering topics in the fields of biological and chemical sciences, environmental science, psychology and others. Students also traveled to the Western Pennsylvania Undergraduate Psychology Conference, presenting their thesis work to conference attendees. Recent Wells students have also earned a Fulbright Program international teaching scholarship and a School for Field Studies Distinguished Student Researcher Award.

Internships and Research Opportunities

Faculty and staff members are available to help with hands-on learning opportunities such as internships, research projects, student-teaching placement or other work outside the classroom. Through these opportunities, Wells students gain practical experience and professional connections while working with laboratory technicians, medical personnel, research teams, government and law offices, and other practitioners in many fields.

Major Fields of Study

In addition to individualized programs, Wells offers a variety of majors and minors, ranging from economics and management, to physics, criminal justice, psychology, chemistry, sport management, history and biology, to the visual and performing arts. In addition, Wells and nearby Cornell University share a close academic and social relationship. Wells students may register for courses offered by any of the seven undergraduate colleges at Cornell. The College also has cross-registration agreements with Ithaca College, which offers strong communications and performing arts courses.

Find your major

The Wells Community

Community Involvement
Wells College's natural setting gives students the benefits of being away from distractions and focus on studies. Aside from their coursework, students are encouraged to become involved with campus life, serving in student government, clubs, committees, and other organizations. Popular clubs include the Society of Physics Students, Model United Nations, Wells International Student Association, and the "Campus Greens" environmental club.

Campus Dining
Food in the Wells dining hall is prepared by the chefs of the Aurora Inn. Meals are served buffet-style, with additional options including a salad bar, made-to-order sandwich and pasta stations, and many sides to choose from. Vegetarian options are available with every meal.

Residential Living
Students are housed in five unique dormitories (including the renovated mansion of founder Henry Wells) and three apartment-style buildings in the village. Most students are paired with a roommate; single rooms are also often available.

Health Care
Health care for students is available at the Community Medical Center located on the Wells campus. It is staffed by two physicians and a certified Family Nurse Practitioner, with day and evening appointments available.

Religious Life
Access to religious services and clubs is available through local communities and Cornell University. Wells will assist with such needs or travel requirements as are related to a student's spiritual life.

Off-campus transportation is available daily to local shops and sights in nearby Ithaca. Wells also schedules van trips to local airports as wells as bus and train stations before and after breaks in the academic year.

Outdoor Recreation and Amenities
Students on the Wells campus can enjoy a fully equipped fitness center, swimming pool, nine-hole golf course, tennis courts, and boathouse stocked with canoes, kayaks, and single-person sailboats.


Contact Us

Melinda Slawson
Sr. Assistant Director of Admissions


Our mission is for every student to think critically, reason wisely and act humanely as they cultivate meaningful lives. On our beautiful lakeside campus, students gain the knowledge, skills and experience to create their own unique path.

170 Main Street, Aurora, NY 13026
Admissions: 800.952.9355 |
General Information: 315.364.3266
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