Skip to main content

COUNSELOR TOOLKIT

Welcome colleagues, this page is designed to give our college counseling partners in high schools, community-based organizations, and independent consulting all the information you need for your students.

We could not be successful without your continued support and dedication to finding the right institution for your students. Whether you’re working with incoming first-year or transfer students, we greatly appreciate your role in getting them college-ready and college-bound.

We invite you to explore the resources below and get to know all that Santa Clara has to offer you and your students.

Contact your SCU Admission Counselor

ADMITTED CLASS OF 2024 STATS

WHO ARE YOU WORKING WITH?

The time has come to apply! Below, you will find a checklist to consider as you embark on the application process with your students.

Select an application deadline and type. Students can apply early on November 1 or wait to apply until January 7. Each deadline offers a binding and non-binding application option. Encourage students to talk to their families about both decisions and choose the path that better suits their needs.

Create an application checklist. There are so many pieces to an application. We recommend students make their own checklist to ensure completion of all college applications. A checklist will also be available to them in their SCU application portal, and they will receive periodic emails from us if they are missing pieces after submission. For more information on application requirements, click here.

To submit or not to submit - test scores. For students applying for Fall 2021 and Fall 2022, standardized test scores are an optional piece of the Santa Clara application. We recognize that many students may not have had the opportunity to ever take these exams. They will not be disadvantaged in the review process.

  • If students were able to take either the ACT or SAT, they may decide whether or not to submit their scores. On the Common Application, they will be asked if they would like their scores to be considered in the review process. Students who choose to submit scores may still self-report these scores on their Santa Clara application portal after submitting the application.

Submit at least one letter of recommendation. Counselors are not required to write a letter of recommendation for a student’s application to Santa Clara, but you are welcome to do so if the student asks. We request at least one letter from an academic teacher. Students should submit no more than three letters total, but the other two can come from just about anyone else (no parents please!).

Counselors must submit documents too! Students will need you to submit a secondary school report and an official transcript to their application. While they are responsible for communicating with you to upload these materials, please be aware that they will need both to complete their Santa Clara application.

  • If students apply by the January 7 deadline, they will also need to have their counselor submit an official mid-year report. We recognize that many schools may not have this document ready by January 7; we ask students to submit the report as soon as it is available. 
  • Send any requested materials through the Common Application
  • If you are having difficulty uploading any documents via the Common Application, please send them to AppStatus@scu.edu

Demonstrate Interest. Whether counselors hold in-person or virtual high school visits, encourage students who are applying to attend these sessions. We do consider demonstrated interest, especially when we come directly to the students. It helps to be able to put a name to a face when reading applications. These visits are their opportunity to introduce themselves and get to know us better.

Have them reach out with questions. Please let your students know that they are always welcome to reach out to their admission counselor if they have questions about Santa Clara or the application. We are here to help them (and you) navigate each step of the process!

Admitted Students can be redirected to our SCU admitted website for next steps involving enrollment, deadlines, resources on campus, and more information on what makes Santa Clara University an outstanding University.

  • Rescission and Gap-Year policies are determined on a case by case scenario for all incoming students. Encourage your students to review the website linked for more information.

First-Generation Students. The LEAD Scholars Program is designed for first-generation students whose parents did not graduate a 4-year college or university.  Through academic courses, advising, social events, vocational exploration, networking, community outreach, funding, leadership opportunities, and alumni engagement, the LEAD Scholars Program supports student success in college and beyond.

  • By joining LEAD, students will have access to additional funding resources on campus, participate in LEAD Week, attend a new student orienation, and participate in English 1A and 2A within the LEAD Scholars Program.

Honors Program. Students who are awarded the Presidential Scholarship, Provost Scholarship, or recognized as Johnson Scholars finalist or semi-finalists are invited to join the Honors Program. Students that are not initially invited can submit an application beginning late March or early April. 

Financial Aid Information. Approximately 73% of Santa Clara University students receive some form of financial aid.

Merit-based aid is determined by the student’s application to SCU, not by their financial need. All incoming first-year students are automatically considered for merit-based aid when they apply to the university. Please consult our Scholarships and Grants page for a full list of awards granted by our institution (please note that some awards on this list are need-based). We have three merit-based scholarships granted directly by the Undergraduate Admission Office:

  • SCU Presidential at Entry Scholarship: full tuition
  • SCU Provost Scholarship: half tuition
  • SCU Dean’s Scholarship: award amount varies
  • These top scholarships are awarded to the top 10-15% of the admitted class

Johnson Scholars Program covers full tuition, additional costs can be covered based on student need (please note: the awardees of this scholarship are selected by a committee, not the Admission Office)

Undocumented Students who meet the AB540 criteria can be considered for state aid programs by the California Dream Act. 

  • Hurtado Scholarship is available for students who demonstrate the most need and meet the initial acceptance requirements of the university. No additional application is required to be considered for the Hurtado scholarship.
  • Undocumented students are also offered a a spot in the LEAD Scholars Program and recieve all of the support and benefits that the program offers.

Need-based aid is determined by the Financial Aid office based on the expected family contribution. Please consult our Financial Aid website for the most updated guidelines. To qualify for need-based aid, we require students to submit both the FAFSA and CSS Profile. These are both external applications that the student will choose to have sent to SCU. There is a cost associated with the CSS Profile, but students can qualify for a fee waiver. 

  • FAFSA School Code: 001326
  • CSS Profile Service Code: 4851

If you are working with a student that needs to submit a financial aid appeal or a dependency status appeal, please direct them to our Special Circumstances Page for more information and the appeal forms.

Getting a head start is always a good idea! Hopefully, it will help reduce stress for your students as well. Below, you will find suggestions for students hoping to get an early start on preparing for their college applications.

Have your student fill out the Request for Information form (for students only!). This form helps us connect with students who are interested in learning more about Santa Clara and ensures they are receiving updates from us.

Visit! Whether students are visiting in person or attending virtual sessions, demonstrating this interest is important to us. 

Focus on high school curriculum. At Santa Clara, we pay close attention to the rigor of a student’s coursework in our review process. We want to see that students are challenging themselves throughout high school, not just in their senior year.

  • Specifically, students should challenge themselves within their area of interest. If they are considering an application to the Leavey School of Business or the School of Engineering, we would like to see calculus-level math by their senior year. 
  • We evaluate rigor within the context of the student’s school. We don’t expect them to take classes that aren’t offered to them. Whether they have honors, AP, IB, dual enrollment, etc., we expect them to take advantage of some of these opportunities. 

Encourage students to explore online resources from the comfort of their home. Encourage students to check out our YouTube Channel, admission blog, and other social media platforms to learn more about the application process, student life, other campus departments, and events happening at SCU.

Start a conversation about financing their education. Students should explore scholarship opportunities and need-based financial aid opportunities during this time. Encourage them to have conversations with their family about what will be realistic.

  • At Santa Clara University, we offer two different types of financial aid for students: need-based aid and merit-based aid. Students can receive both, one but not the other, or neither. For an overview of the cost of attendance and basics of undergraduate financial aid at SCU, please consult the Financial Aid Website.
  • Apply for outside scholarships! At Santa Clara, our merit scholarships are very competitive and limited. That’s why we encourage students to look for scholarships from outside organizations that can be applied to their total cost of attendance here. Scholly, Cappex, and Unigo are great resources for students to use during this process!
  • Have students reach out to their admission counselor. Students can find the admission counselor that oversees their region here. Once they have begun their research process, encourage them to reach out early with additional questions. It is best for them to browse the university website before reaching out. While we love talking to students and helping them navigate this process, we do expect them to have done basic research before asking us questions.

 

Application Requirements. Review the above sections for Seniors and Juniors and Younger as the process is similar for international students. For students applying as first-year or transfer students, review these sections, as most of the steps are the same as other applicants. Students will use the Common Application and need to review our recommended courses to complete before applying. 

English Proficiency. All international applicants are expected to complete an English Proficiency exam which can be met in several ways. English courses at a community college or U.S university do not fulfill this requirement.

Sending SCU Documents. Do not send transcripts, exam results, TOEFL or IELTS, SAT or ACT scores by email. Santa Clara requires high school and university transcripts to be uploaded electronically by the school counselor, school administrator or university registrar (ex. Naviance, SCOIR, Parchment, eScript, BridgeU, Cialfo, FolderWave, MaiaLearning, etc.). If the secondary school or university is unable to submit documents electronically, please mail them to:

Santa Clara University
Office of Undergraduate Admission
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053-0513

Global Engagement and Immigration. Visit Santa Clara University’s Global Engagement for the most updated information on travel restrictions and accommodations. Once the student has completed the English Proficiency exam and has been admitted, SCU will work with the student on completing an immigration application.

Financial Aid. Santa Clara University requires international applicants to provide a Student Financial Resource Form. A FAFSA and CSS are not required for international applicants.

  • Student Financial Resource Form. Students must submit the International Student Financial Resource Form that demonstrates that their family or the student can cover the total cost of the first year of attendance. This form will be accessible through their application status portal only after they submit the Common Application. The student will also need to upload supporting documents to demonstrate proof of funds claimed on the form at the time of form submission. 
  • Merit Scholarships. International students are eligible for merit-based awards. Merit-based awards are decided at the time of review of their application. No additional documents or applications are necessary to review merit awards.

Determine if your student qualifies as a transfer student. 

  • Transfer student: A student that has graduated from high school or completed their GED and has enrolled in at least 8 semester or 12 quarter transferable units at an accredited college or university post-graduation/GED completion should apply as a transfer student.
  • First-year student: A student that was dual enrolled and receiving college credit (regardless of unit total) but their main school of enrollment was their high school or homeschool program should apply as a first-year student. A student that has graduated from high school or completed their GED and has enrolled in less than 8 semester or 12 quarter transferable units at an accredited college or university post-graduation/GED completion should apply as a first-year student.
  • Please note: Students will need to have coursework with grades earned within the past 5 years. For students that have a large time gap (5+ years) in their academic career, we encourage them to start by attending a community college to get recent courses and grades on their transcript and then apply to SCU as a transfer student.

Have your student fill out our Request for Information form. This will add them to the email list and get them in our system. We also encourage your student to check out this video about the transfer process.

Transfer Guides. If you are working with a student who is currently attending a CA community college, please look at our list of Transfer Guides. Students who apply to SCU by completing a Transfer Guide with their community college counselor have a significantly stronger application. If a student is attending a CA community college that is not listed or an institution outside of CA, please refer to the General Transfer Guide to the SCU Core Curriculum. For students that want to review their coursework they should view our policy on transferring credits. As a note, we follow the University of California guidelines on transferable courses, with some exceptions. 

Completing the Application and our Review. Our transfer application is also completed through the Common Application, but it is a much more academically-driven review process than our first-year application. For the full requirements of the Transfer Application, as well as which majors are currently available or closed, please view our Transfer Student Page

Selecting an alternate school. Students that apply to the Leavey School of Business or the School of Engineering can also opt to be considered for the College of Arts and Sciences as their second choice. This must be indicated on their application. 

  • Students must remain in the school they are admitted to for one year before petitioning to transfer to another school within the university (if desired). 

First-Generation Students. The LEAD Scholars Program is designed for first-generation students whose parents did not graduate a 4-year college or university.  Through academic courses, advising, social events, vocational exploration, networking, community outreach, funding, leadership opportunities, and alumni engagement, the LEAD Scholars Program supports student success in college and beyond.

  • By joining LEAD, students will have access to additional funding resources on campus, participate in LEAD Week, attend a new student orienation, and participate in English 1A and 2A within the LEAD Scholars Program if they have not already completed their introductory English requirement.
  • Transfer LEAD Scholars are required to take LEAD 101 which begins during LEAD Week and continues through fall quarter. During this class students will learn about campus resources and leadership opportunities with a special focus on vocation and career.

Financial Aid. Transfer Students are eligible for need-based aid, which requires them to complete the FAFSA.  Please consult our Financial Aid website for the most updated guidelines. No merit scholarships are available at this time.

  • FAFSA School Code: 001326
  • If you are working with a student that needs to submit a financial aid appeal or a dependency status appeal, please direct them to our Special Circumstances Page for more information and the appeal forms. 

Admission Overview

Santa Clara University's admission counselors and students give an overview of SCU. Head over to our YouTube Channel for more content. 

Watch Now
Image links to full content

General Questions

Contact the Office of Undergraduate Admission via email at admission@scu.edu or phone at 408-554-4700.

Image links to full content

Join Our Mailing List

Join our mailing list and receive the most upto date information on Santa Clara University admission. 

Image links to full content

SCU Admission Blog

SCU's Admission Counselors put together a blog series for students to get an inside perspective on admission. 

Image links to full content

Visit Us Virtually

We offer a virtual platform for all groups and organizations. Because all university travel is suspended currently due to COVID-19, our staff is accommodating requests from school and CBO counselors for virtual visits.

Image links to full content

Counselor Portal

Register for our School Counselor Portal through Slate.org to track your students' admission statuses to ensure that they have submitted all necessary application materials. 

Image links to full content

Appstatus

Send additional documents to appstatus@scu.edu if you are unable to upload them via the Common App.