Admission: Not Impossible


“I was worried about having a random roommate, but my freshman year roommate and I ended up getting along so well; we have roomed together on campus every year since!”

-Alex Aviza ‘18, Political Science major, French minor, from Chicago, IL





I was most worried about not knowing anyone going into school. Not many people from my high school attend Holy Cross so it was a very new experience/environment. This feeling was remedied after summer orientation and meeting a couple of good friends with whom I stayed in contact with over the summer.

-Jeff Warden ‘18, Economics and Spanish double major, from North Andover, MA







“The thing I was most worried about coming to school was making a good group of friends. I think Holy Cross does a really great job with facilitating first-year programs and giving students something to bond over. I remember going home for Thanksgiving Break last year and being so surprised and happy with how many close friends I had already met through these programs.”

-Kate Beckerman ‘20, English major, from Duxbury, MA










“Going to school so far away from home, but once I stepped foot on campus, Holy Cross became my new home! I am glad I chose somewhere that I can truly call home, especially because of all my amazing friends here!”

-Sarah Brink ‘19, Biology major, Pre-Vet track, from Chicago, IL











“Class difficulty was worrisome, however I have formed better study habits through this to make school work go more smoothly”

-Emma DeFrancesco ‘20, Psychology and Spanish double major, from Albany, NY








“I was worried about being incredibly homesick but luckily I was able to feel right at home with this wonderful community and I met so many people in my first few weeks that I am able to call my friends.”

-Liza Goodman ‘21, English and Theatre double major, from Manchester, NY







“I was really worried about not being able to handle the academic stress mostly. A lot of it was resolved by more careful time management, and also going to office hours to seek for help!”

-Karen (Zhiran) Xu ‘19, Music & Computer Science double major, Neuroscience concentration, from Shenzhen, China










“I was most worried about leaving my family, but when I left them at the Mass of the Holy Spirit, I was greeted by so many smiling faces, I knew everything would be great and I would find my home here.”

-Abby Scott ‘20, French and International Studies double major, from Scituate, MA







“I was most worried about the amount of work I would have and balancing my schedule, but I have found countless resources on campus (office hours, calc buddies, ect.) that have helped me stay on track.”

-Olivia Fredrick ‘21, Undeclared major, from Newton, MA











My favorite thing at HC are the variety of clubs and activities available.”

-Allie Silge ‘20, Economics major, Art History minor, from Lake Forest, IL









The size. I love being so close to all my friends because that doesn’t happen on other campuses. I also love the community, especially within academics. Professors are incredibly accessible!”

-Heather Domenicis ‘19, English major, Creative Writing concentration, from Worcester, MA








“My favorite thing about Holy Cross is the loving attitude everyone has towards one another. If you need a hug, someone is always there. If you need help on a paper, someone is always there. If you need someone to talk to, someone is always there.”

-Michaela Fleming ‘20, Political Science major, Italian minor, from Framingham, MA







“My classes! They have all taught me to question more and think deeper, something that has helped me both in and out of the classroom.”

-Emma Liskov ‘21, Undeclared major, from Milford, MA








“My favorite thing about HC is the passion for service shared by most students on campus.”

-Mae Hougo ‘18, Political Science major, Peace and Conflict Studies concentration








“My favorite thing about Holy Cross is the traditions that we have every year. Whether that be the fall fest dinner in Kimball dining hall, the lessons in carols in the chapel right before Christmas or the homecoming weekend football game. All of these events are a time for the Holy Cross community to come together and they are always something that I look forward to each year.”

-Maggie Scanlon ‘18, History major, Peace and Conflicts Studies concentration, from Wakefield, MA






“Getting to take classes in subjects that I normally would not be involved in such as an Anthropology class and Sociology class. Also the Montserrat program. I had a really good Montserrat experience as a whole.”

-Patience Thompson ‘20, English major, from Nashville, TN









“My favorite thing about Holy Cross is the opportunities it has given me, in meeting amazing people and professors, and all the opportunities I will have after graduating.”

-Maeve McNamara ‘20, Political Science major, Peace and Conflict Studies concentration, from Brewster, MA








“My favorite thing about Holy Cross is the dedication to academics and the close attention that the professors give to each student.”

-William Crowley ‘20, Chemistry major, Pre-med track, from Ridgefield, CT









“The professors.  They are consistently brilliant and wonderful people, and I have felt supported and challenged by each and every professor I have had in class.”

-Julia Palmerino ‘18, History and Music double major, from Sudbury, MA








100% the community. The community aspect of Holy Cross is amazing, which definitely makes it stand out from other schools.”

-Connor Durkin ‘18, Psychology Major, from Merrimac, MA










I have learned that the skills that got you to a certain point in your life are not necessarily going to keep you there, and they won’t help you grow. It is so important to be constantly changing as a student and as an individual, questioning the world around you, and enjoying the opportunities you are presented.”

-Alex Aviza ‘18, Political Science major, French minor, from Chicago, IL





“I think my time at Holy Cross has taught me the importance of context and perspective.  This is built into the liberal arts curriculum and the Jesuit ideals, but particularly as a history major I think I have discovered the importance of thinking critically and understanding different points of view on a given issue.  This broad approach to learning and thinking is something I will absolutely carry with me into the world.”

-Julia Palermino ‘18, History and Music double major, from Sudbury, MA







“I have learned how to be more independent and how to take on more challenging responsibilities.”

-Megan Nementh ‘18, Psychology and Sociology double major, from Charleston, SC








“I have learned that many things can change in four years that will challenge you. These challenges may feel overwhelming at the time, but will ultimately help you become a better person. Also, I’ve learned that four years is too short!”

-Tom Cimini ‘18, Psychology major, Neuroscience minor, from Pittsfield, MA









“That everyone’s contribution to your surroundings helps the community thrive.”

-Ian Robertson ‘18, Economics major, from Beverly, MA








“It would take me hours to answer this completely, but to put simply, I have learned that life will pass you by if you don’t slow down through the madness, spend your days with those who brighten your days, and genuinely care about what you are doing – be it homework, a Rehm event, or anything else. Don’t be indifferent – life is too short.”

-Clare Orie ‘18, International Studies major, French minor, Peace and Conflict Studies concentration, from Sudbury, MA








“Genuine interest in other people. Everyone has something special about them the world ought to know, and I feel as though by being surrounded by so many kind and caring people at HC, I have fostered a similar desire to get to know this something special in everyone I meet.”

-Megan Viera ‘18, Economics and Studio Art double major, from Norwalk, CT








“I’ve learned to think critically and analytically and to use a variety of different lenses when considering a certain situation. I will undoubtedly take this open minded attitude with me post grad.”

-Kelley Kraemer ‘18, Psychology major, Religious Studies minor, from Cincinnati, Ohio









“I learned how interconnected my education can be, and those collaborative skills I will take with me into the workplace and world.”

-Mae Hougo ‘18, Political Science major, Peace and Conflict Studies concentration, from Saint Paul, MN








“As cliche as it may sound, I really learned how to be a woman for and with others. The college’s mission, my professors, and my peers have shown me how and why it is so important to be kind and to care for others. I am much more aware of how a smile, holding a door, or a kind word can really make a huge impact on others.”

-Nina Sparre ‘18, Political Science and Spanish double major, from Holliston, Massachusetts










“I have always been very independent, but I think being a student here has solidified that for me.  From navigating roommate challenges, to studying abroad, to writing a thesis proposal, every aspect of my time here at Holy Cross has taught me how important it is to advocate for yourself and others.”

-Julia Palmerino ‘18, Music and History double major, from Sudbury, MA






“I have learned so much about myself during my time at Holy Cross. One important thing I have realized is that prostration does not only waste other people’s time, it waste my time as well. If I get things done in a timely manner, I have time to relax, stress-free! But I am also still growing.”

-Rosangel Cruz Cabrera ‘18, International Studies Concentration, International Political Economy and Latin America, from Providence, RI






“I feel like I have been able to grow inside and outside the classroom. I have been able to take on a variety of leadership positions and have learned how to work with my peers and also faculty and staff. I also have been challenged in the classroom which has increased my capacity to think.”

-Maggie Scanlon ‘18, History major, Peace and Conflicts Studies concentration, from Wakefield, MA





“I feel like I have developed and grown so much as a person through my time here at HC. This school teaches you so much about the world and I think I’ve become way more open to new ideas and perspectives and much more apt to think about others before thinking of myself.”

-Nina Sparre ‘18, Political Science and Spanish double major, from Holliston, Massachusetts






“Through my four years at Holy Cross, I have not only grown physically, but also spiritually, mentally, globally, geographically, and artistically.”

-Alex Tansey ‘18, Economics major, from Peabody, MA







“I have grown and matured so much as a person over my years at Holy Cross. I have faced challenges that have made me

stronger and I have made wonderful memories that will remain with me forever.”

-Abby Howland ‘18, English major, from Norwell, MA









“I have grown exponentially since my first day at HC. I never would have seen myself as someone who was confident enough to give tours and conduct senior interviews, but here I am! This school forces you to step outside of your comfort zone in so many ways and I am eternally grateful for that.”

-Kelley Kraemer ‘18, Psychology major, Religious Studies minor, from Cincinnati, Ohio








“I have grown intellectually, spiritually, and socially at HC. Their focus on the whole person is so evident in every graduate of this institution.”

-Megan Viera ‘18, Economics and Studio Art double major, from Norwalk, CT








“I have learned to be comfortable not knowing everything and to be confident in my ability to express myself and to explore new experiences.  I have learned to ask more of myself and to be a woman for others.”

-Maeve Westover ‘18, International Studies major, from Boston, MA







“Abundantly. I’ve learned how to prioritize the different aspects of my life when it seems everything is a priority. I love what I study, and I love what I am involved in, and this passion has been a journey from freshman year, where I sort of just had a check-the-box approach to my classes and extracurriculars.”

-Claire Orie ‘18, International Studies and French double major, Peace and Conflict Studies concentration, from Sudbury, MA








“I was excited to be a member of such a close-knit, passionate intellectual community.”

-Julia Palmerino ‘18, History and Music double major, from Sudbury, MA







I most looked forward to the rigorous liberal arts education that Holy Cross offers. As a senior in high school, I had no idea what I wanted to study and I was excited to explore a myriad of options at Holy Cross.”

-Jeff Warden ‘18, Economics and Spanish double major, from North Andover, MA







“Having class, studying, and doing research in the awesome science complex.”

-Tom Cimini ‘18, Psychology Major and Neuroscience Minor, from Pittsfield, MA










“I loved that Holy Cross was like its own community.  When I first came to the campus, I saw people walking by and saying hi to one another, working on homework together, and just talking and having fun.  For me, the best part of Holy Cross is that it is so small. You get to really know the people around you and, in turn, form an even stronger attachment to the community itself.”

-Talia Spirito ‘21, Undeclared major, from Cranston, Rhode Island








“As I was looking at different Colleges and Universities, I was looking closely at the Pre-Med programs.  Holy Cross’s Medical school acceptance rate is one of the highest in the country and more than double the national average.”

-Jennifer Jackson ‘19, Accounting major Anthropology minor, Pre-Business Track, from Newton, MA









“I looked forward to the opportunity to become involved in the Worcester community. Through CBL and SPUD, I have been able to meet amazing people from Worcester who have made a large impact on my life.”

-Olivia Ferrick ‘20, Psychology major, from Kennebunk, Maine










“The thing I most looked forward to experiencing at Holy Cross was being able to take advantage of their research programs to participate in meaningful research.”

-William Crowley ‘20, Psychology major, from Shrewsbury, MA









“I was really excited about attending the sporting events. I was so excited to join Sader Nation and bleed purple!”

-Maddy Glynn ‘18, Psychology major, Pre-Health track, from Rochester, New York

Name: Maureen Connolly

Major: Chemistry

Hometown: New Canaan, CT

What are you going to miss most about Holy Cross?

The community – it’s truly a second family that I know I’ll have forever but not necessarily at my fingertips the way it is now

Do you have any plans for the future?

I am working in White Plains, NY for PepsiCo in a Foodservice Sales position.

What did you learn at Holy Cross that you will take with you into the world?

I learned how to adapt to different situations, personalities, and time demands that I know will be invaluable to me moving forward.

What piece of advice would you like to share with prospective students?

Embrace all that Holy Cross has to offer – there are so many opportunities so do not hesitate to get involved

How do you feel you’ve grown over your time at Holy Cross?

I have grown tremendously. I am more capable as far as time management and a more confident individual than I was when I first arrived on the Hill.

What is your favorite thing about HC?

The friends I have met, I couldn’t imagine my life without them

What is the most exciting event you’ve attended this year?

The Women In Business Conference… The keynote speaker was fantastic and really inspired me not to be intimidated by anyone. It showed me that I can be a strong, confident woman when I enter the workforce next year.


Name: Isabella Cuellar

Major/Minor: Psychology Major, Education Minor

Hometown: Coronado, CA

What are you going to miss most about Holy Cross?

I am going to miss the community and close proximity to all my friends. 

Do you have any plans for the future?

I accepted an offer as a teacher with Teach for America in New York City

What did you learn at Holy Cross that you will take with you into the world?

I learned to be a stronger leader and confidence in taking initiative in all aspects of my life.

What piece of advice would you like to share with prospective students?

I would encourage prospective students to take advantage of all the unique opportunities that HC has to offer and to step out of their comfort zone to try new things.

How do you feel you’ve grown over your time at Holy Cross?

I have grown intellectually and spiritually through the diverse classes I’ve taken and the multiple opportunities in the chaplain’s office that I have engaged in.

What is your favorite thing about HC?

I love the supportive and welcoming community at Holy Cross where students are accepting and encouraging of each other.


Did you know that Holy Cross wasn’t always a co-educational institution? In 1836, Father James Fitton purchased the land now known as Holy Cross to serve as an all male academy. With his pastoral responsibilities taking time away from his academy management, Father Fitton handed over his land to Bishop Joseph Fenwick, who held the College’s first Commencement of six male students in 1849. Within three years, the College had increased to 100 male students.

Since its opening, Holy Cross has served as an exquisite institution and has continued providing one of the finest educations to approximately 2,900 students today. With 48% men and 52% women, Holy Cross students serve as men and women for and with others, as Holy Cross students are urged to measure their personal successes in life by what they have done to better the lives of others. The fairly equal ratio of men to women at Holy Cross allows for the accumulation of diverse opinions, perspectives, and experiences which make Holy Cross so special.

Opening its doors to women in 1972, Holy Cross has included them in all aspects of campus- academics, athletics, and extracurricular activities. For example, “Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies” has increasingly become a popular academic concentration for all students. This concentration explores the many facets of gender and encourages students to delve deeper into the every day assumptions and marginalized experiences. Within this concentration are study abroad opportunities, capstone projects, volunteer and research opportunities, and student organizations including the Feminist Forum and Pride.

Outside of academics, there are many opportunities strictly for women. The Sister to Sister Collaborative  (S2S) is a campus-wide committee open to female ALANA and international students, staff, faculty, and administrators of Holy Cross. It seeks to create opportunities for ALANA and international women to feel supported and included in the Holy Cross community by providing a forum for developing and nurturing dialogue around issues that impact their daily lives. In addition to S2S, the Women’s Corner, created by Sociology and Anthropology departments, features diverse perspectives, promotes open exchange, and fosters critical inquiry in a space that highlights issues pertaining to women, gender, and sexuality.

Holy Cross also offers opportunities for women to be successful both before and after their four years at the college. The Women in Business Conference is open to female students and celebrates, honors, and inspires those pursuing a business career and offers an opportunity to network. The Women’s Institute of Summer Experimental Research (WISER) provides accomplished young women entering their junior or senior year in high school the opportunity to earn college credit through a seminar-style course in the natural sciences as well as to gain hands-on research experience in a state-of-the-art laboratory. The Women in Science Day aims at maintaining and enhancing the involvement of women in the STEM disciplines by allowing high school students to participate in interactive lab demonstrations offered by the departments of Chemistry, Biology, Physics, and Mathematics & Computer Science, as well as STEM-specific browsing sessions, with representatives from the College.

There are many extracurricular and athletics groups open for female students as well. These include all-female a cappella groups, and all female Division 1 sports teams and club sports teams such as women’s soccer, rugby, volleyball, lacrosse, and basketball.

 Since 1972, women have been vital in the success and experience of Holy Cross. They have been an integral part of the campus’ student body by contributing new perspectives, opinions, and experiences. Without women, the Holy Cross we know today would not be same.  In celebration of Women’s History Month, the College has held and continues to showcase a series of events, performances, and lectures, which take place throughout the month of March and are open to the public.


written by Joanna A. ’19




Even though applicant decisions have been released, prospective students are still visiting campus! For this week’s Spotlight, current Outreach Admissions volunteers reflect on the question, what do you love most about interacting with prospective students/families? Read their answers to see what your visit to campus means to our volunteers!



Telling the prospective students and families how Holy Cross will allow them to explore their academic and extracurricular passions in an even deeper way than high school.

-Spencer Caron ‘20, Philosophy and Neuroscience double major, from Belchertown, MA










Hearing everyone’s story is the thing I love most about prospective students. We all have a reason to why or how we got to Holy Cross and hearing everyone’s different stories is a great way to interact with them.

-Kelly Connors ‘20, Political Science major, from Leominster, MA









I love hearing about the variety of interests that people have in Holy Cross and their reasons for coming to visit.

-Katie Kelsh ‘20, Political Science and Spanish double major, from Evanston, IL










They are eager to hear about the daily lives of the students here

-Danielle Wilson ‘18, Economics and Physics double major, from Rockville Centre, NY









I love helping students and their families through what I know is such a tricky time. If looked at properly, college admissions can be exciting, not just scary!

-Paulina Martin ‘21, Undeclared major, from Mansfield, MA








I love sharing with them my own experiences and how I have grown as a student, person, and friend while here at Holy Cross.

-Allie Silge ‘20, Economics major and Art History Minor, from Lake Forest, IL









I love just talking about how great this school is. If I love the school so much, why wouldn’t I want to share my love to others?!

-Michaela Fleming ‘20, Political Science major and Italian Minor, from Framingham, MA









I really enjoy expressing how much I love Holy Cross. Also, having been in the position of prospective students before, I know how stressful the application process is, so I would like to ease their concerns about it as well as  give them a better understanding of what Holy Cross is like.

-Maddie Piccione ‘20, Psychology major and Neuroscience minor, from Weston, MA






I love hearing about the different places families come from.  It is exciting to know that some people are so enthusiastic about Holy Cross that they travel for hours just for a tour or info session!

-Emily Mercier ‘21, Undeclared major, from Cumberland, RI

Two projector screens light up the dark room. These extended computer displays can be seen as portals into the lives of our applicants, much like eyes are looked at as windows into the human soul.

I’ve spent the better part of the last four weeks in the admissions committee room with twelve of my colleagues. With our decision release date of March 17th, we still have a couple of weeks left to go.

Day by day, some things have changed while others have remained the same. At any given time, a fly on the wall could observe a counselor sitting down or standing up, switching seats or swapping snacks. Our applications have rolled up The Hill from down the street and from out of state; some applications have even been out of this world! As each new candidate comes into focus, counselors take time to walk around in the file for a while. We seek out A’s and advanced classes, as well as interviews, instances of interest, and additional information. I can honestly say that it’s been an inspiring and entertaining journey getting to know thousands of Holy Cross hopefuls over these past few weeks.

When it comes to making decisions, we operate by majority rule. Some verdicts are unanimous, while others are split. The committee is composed of a baker’s dozen of higher education professionals who hail from distinct places and who embrace diverse viewpoints. The thirteen counselors who make up the College of the Holy Cross Admissions Committee can be thought of like the thirteen different kinds of cards in a deck (two through ace). We hold different values and each one is a crucial component of the whole. The multifariousness of both our committee members and our applicant pool makes participating in the game of admissions a unique challenge and joy.

As the overhead lights dim and the projector lights brighten on this day, I’m beginning to see the light at the end of the (admissions) tunnel, and I’m sure that you are too. Thank you to all of our applicants this year – it’s been a pleasure to read your stories and to learn about your lives. May good fortune find you on March 17th!


by Tom McHugh

Name: Katie Kelsh

Class Year: 2020

Majors: Political Science and Spanish

Hometown: Evanston, IL

What was something that stood out to you about Holy Cross?

The classes at Holy Cross were on the smaller side so I was able to have a much more engaged academic experience other than just lectures. I also liked how residential the college was, and how most people lived either close to the college or on campus so everyone is very involved in campus and are not rushing home after class.

What was something you looked forward to experiencing at Holy Cross?

I was looking forward to the Montserrat classes, being in a year long class and getting close with my classmates exploring topics that I was not as familiar with in comparison to some of my other classes.

What makes HC special for you?

The community and the amazing professors

What is your favorite thing about HC?

My favorite thing is the HC spirit,  everyone is just so happy to be here!

Once you graduate, what will you miss most about HC?

I will miss walking around campus and just seeing all the familiar faces

What is one piece of advice you would like to give to prospective students?

You won’t make the wrong decision in the end!

Name: Spencer Caron

Class Year: 2020

Major/Minor: Philosophy & Neuroscience

Hometown: Belchertown, MA

What was something that stood out to you about Holy Cross?

The close knit community and supportive alumni network

What was something you looked forward to experiencing at Holy Cross?

Taking courses in different disciplines.

What types of things do you enjoy talking about with prospective students/families?

I like talking about the different majors and my and my friends’ experiences with their favorite classes. I also like talking about the food on campus and how Kimball is continually getting better.

What do you find prospective students are most concerned about and what advice would you give them about it?

They are usually most concerned about finding a major quickly and I tell them that I am a sophomore and have barely made any progress on my major/minor, but will be perfectly fine in the end.

What makes HC special for you?

It is an undergraduate institution that is most concerned about student success.  Research, partying and sports come second to making sure students are successful in their lives beyond HC

What is your favorite thing about HC?

The size.  I would never have been able to do the things I have already done if the school was larger.  The size also allows me to know the students in my class, and easily become acquainted with professors

Once you graduate, what will you miss most about HC?

I will miss weekend days with my friends and taking unnecessary trips to target to buy snacks for the room.  Leaving HC will probably mark the end of being able to hang out with friends on a regular basis

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