First Year Applicants

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Application Requirements

The admission process at Fairfield University is holistic. Our belief in the importance of a thorough and careful review of all aspects of your application reflects our mission as a Jesuit institution. We seek to educate the whole person, and our admission practices reflect that goal.

Fairfield University recognizes the Common Application as its own application form.

The submission of SAT/ACT test results is optional at Fairfield. Learn more about our Standardized Test Optional Policy below and have some of your further questions answered by our Admission FAQs.

If you are applying as a first year student, your application and the following supporting credentials must be submitted by the deadline: (High school counselors and teachers submitting supporting documents are welcome to do so up to two weeks after the student admission deadline.)

  • Completed Common Application
  • Official secondary school transcript
  • Secondary school report form completed by your college counselor
  • Personal statement (Common Application Essay)
  • $60 application fee or official fee waiver
  • SAT or ACT results (If you choose to submit them). Refer to our Standardized Test Optional Policy for more details.
  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is highly recommended if you have resided in the U.S. for fewer than three years and English is not your native language
  • Interviews are not required, but they are a great way to demonstrate your interest in the University, as well as get any and all questions answered.

We regard your academic record from high school as the most important part of your application for admission. Although we certainly consider your final grade point average and overall record over four years, we do look deeper, considering your performance during each year in high school. We look for students who have challenged themselves at the appropriate level. Not only are your final grades considered, we look very carefully at the quality of the academic program you have pursued.

In deciding whether or not to submit your standardized test scores, consider your overall academic record. Your decision should be based on whether you believe your scores are an accurate representation of your academic abilities.

While your academic record is clearly a critical element of the entire admission application, we are also interested in the personal qualities, talents and interests that you will bring to our campus community. We want to know about your extra curricular involvement, the quality of your writing as reflected in the personal statement, and the reflections of teachers, counselors, and others who submit recommendations on your behalf.

Standardized Test Optional Policy

Fairfield acknowledges that standardized test scores can be shaped by environmental and cultural factors that make them a less-than-ideal gauge of your capacity for success. Our findings, which are consistent with those of other institutions, are that your high school record in general is a better predictor of future success than your scores on the SATs.

As a Jesuit, Catholic institution committed to creating a student-focused, holistic, and diverse educational environment, we believe strongly in making a Fairfield education available to as many talented students as possible. We firmly believe that by making test scores optional, Fairfield University will attract a high number of talented and engaged students who will benefit from what Fairfield has to offer and contribute to the richness of our community.

What we look for in our students

When considering an applicant for admission, we will continue to consider all measures of academic achievement, as well as curricular and extra curricular achievement. We want to know about your academic abilities, community engagement, and leadership qualities. Your knowledge of and appreciation for Fairfield's mission and vision are also important factors. Ultimately, our goal is to enroll students who are committed to becoming scholars who will contribute to and benefit from the Fairfield community.

If you decide not to submit your test scores, we will strongly encourage you to schedule a virtual interview.

Have a question about our admission process or policy? Contact us directly by phone (203) 254-4100 or email.

Important Dates

Students who consider Fairfield University to be among their top choices and would like to have their application reviewed early may submit their application under our Early Action program. Applicants for Early Action must submit the completed application by November 1.

  • Early Action Application Deadline - November 1
  • Notification Date - Fairfield University typically releases decisions between December 20 and January 15. Students will receive notification via e-mail two days prior to decisions being released.
  • Financial Aid Deadlines:
    • CSS Profile and FAFSA - December 1

Students who are certain that Fairfield University is their first choice for a college education, and are willing to commit to attending if admitted, are welcome to apply as an Early Decision Candidate. Once admitted, an Early Decision candidate agrees to withdraw all other college applications and confirm his or her attendance at Fairfield.

  • Early Decision I Application Deadline - November 15
  • Early Decision I Notification Date - December 15
  • Early Decision I Financial Aid Deadlines:
    • CSS Profile and FAFSA - December 1
  • Early Decision II Application Deadline - January 15
  • Early Decision II Notification Date - February 15
  • Early Decision II Financial Aid Deadlines:
    • CSS Profile and FAFSA - January 15

  • Regular Decision Application Deadline - January 15
  • Notification Date - April 1
  • Financial Aid Deadlines:
    • CSS Profile and FAFSA - January 15

The priority application deadline for entry into the fall semester is April 1 and for entry into the spring semester the priority deadline is November 15. Students who apply by this date will receive priority review for admission, institutional financial aid, scholarship, and housing. Applications will continue to be accepted and reviewed beyond the priority deadlines on a space and resource available basis.

Scholarships

Fairfield University Merit Scholarships

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Fairfield University Merit Scholarships

All students admitted to Fairfield are automatically considered for a merit scholarship, regardless of whether they have completed an application for financial aid. Eligibility for a merit scholarship is determined after a thorough review of all aspects of a student's application, including their overall academic record, strength of their academic program, and their extra-curricular involvement. In keeping with the University’s holistic review of applications, there are no minimum grades or standardized test scores required for merit scholarship consideration. Over 30% of admitted students are awarded a merit scholarship, which can range from $7,500 to $26,000.

The Arts & Sciences Guarantee

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The Arts & Sciences Guarantee

The Arts & Sciences Guarantee is a distinctive fellowship offered to all College of Arts and Sciences undergraduate students, beginning with the Class of 2026. Designed to offer access to students who want to gain important hands-on industry experience, the Arts & Sciences Guarantee provides funding of up to $2,500 to support undergraduates who obtain an approved unpaid internship, research, or fieldwork experience while studying at Fairfield.

For more information, please contact the College of Arts and Sciences Office of Career and Professional Development at CASCareers@fairfield.edu.

Athletic Grants-in-Aid

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Athletic Grants-in-Aid

Student-athletes are generally recruited by Fairfield University coaches, who identify candidates on the basis of their athletic skill. Prospective students should contact the Athletic Department directly to speak with a coach about grant-in-aid opportunities.

Fairfield University also offers a variety of athletic scholarships and named funds that start at $50,000 and can be payable over 3-5 years. Visit the Friends of Athletics’ scholarships page to learn more.

Bridgeport Tuition Grant

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Bridgeport Tuition Grant

Fairfield University is deeply committed to the students of Bridgeport and their future educational goals. Since 1999, the University has sponsored the Community Partnership Scholars Program at four Bridgeport high schools (Bassick, Central, Harding, and Kolbe-Cathedral). Through this program, Fairfield University collaborates with each participating school to offer admission and financial aid mentoring, resources to cover group visits to campus, and a full tuition scholarship awarded every year at each of the four schools.

Fairfield University has expanded this effort in two significant ways. The first is to provide full tuition scholarships to Bridgeport high school students whose annual family income is under $50,000 and whose financial assets are typical of families with this annual income. Based on individual circumstances, students may qualify for additional financial aid to cover fees, room, board, and personal expenses related to enrollment. Any Bridgeport resident who is admitted to Fairfield University, graduates from one of the Bridgeport high schools listed below, and has attended that school for all four academic years is eligible to apply for this award.

  • Bassick High School
  • Bridge Academy
  • Bridgeport International Academy
  • Bridgeport Military Academy
  • Bullard Havens Vocational-Technical High School
  • Capital Preparatory Harbor School (Bridgeport)
  • Central High School
  • Great Oaks Charter High School
  • Harding High School
  • Kolbe Cathedral High School
  • The Interdistrict Magnet Schools at the Fairchild Wheeler Campus (eligibility for Bridgeport residents only)

The second effort includes expansion of Fairfield University's commitment to the Community Partnership Scholars Program by providing additional scholarships to eligible students. Students with additional demonstrated financial need beyond the base award may qualify for further assistance.

Eligibility Guidelines: The full-time, Bridgeport high school student must apply to Fairfield University for undergraduate admission by either the early action or regular decision application deadline each year. Students must be offered admission through the standard admission review process to be eligible.

The CSS Profile, Noncustodial Parent PROFILE (if applicable), and FAFSA applications must be received by the Office of Financial Aid by the January 15 deadline. 

The student's family must annually demonstrate a federal Adjusted Gross Income of under $50,000 and have financial assets that are typical of households with this income.

Students are required to complete and submit the Bridgeport Tuition Grant Application with all required forms and documents by the deadline. Proper documentation of income (federal income tax returns) from two-years prior is required from the custodial parent and the noncustodial parent, if applicable. Parent federal tax returns, w-2's, and the verification worksheet for dependent students must be submitted to the Office of Financial Aid by February 1 to be considered for eligibility.  Failure to adhere to all deadline requirements may result in ineligibility for the program.

Students also must be enrolled as full-time, day students at Fairfield University to be eligible for this tuition program. Students must enroll at Fairfield in the first semester following their high school graduation.

Students that have applied for and are receiving the Bridgeport Tuition Grant are required to adhere to Fairfield University’s financial aid awarding policies. Fairfield University reserves the right to request additional documentation as needed to determine initial or renewal eligibility. The award is for one year only. Renewal eligibility will be based on meeting renewal deadlines, income/asset thresholds and various other financial aid eligibility requirements.

For additional information, contact the Office of Financial Aid.

The Company Scholars

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The Company Scholars

In 1540, St. Ignatius of Loyola founded the Society of Jesuits with six of his closest companions. From that moment on, this group of “God’s soldiers,” also known as the “The Company of Jesus," would go on to “set the world aflame,” serving the underserved and dedicating their lives to social justice through education.

Honoring these same principles, Fairfield University established The Company Scholars, a unique program that provides four-year, full-cost scholarships to a cohort of 10-12 students attending Jesuit and Cristo Rey high schools. Students selected to participate in the program become part of an elite group of diverse individuals, who are engaged in academic excellence and equipped with a supportive network and a platform to make a difference.

Students enrolled in The Company Scholars program receive:

  • An invitation to participate in Fairfield’s Academic Immersion program, a summer bridge program that allows students to earn six credits prior to the start of the first academic year
  • One-on-one mentorship with esteemed faculty and peer leaders
  • Academic and career advising
  • Research and study abroad opportunities
  • Group fellowship and support
  • Full room and board

In order to apply, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Be enrolled as a high school senior at a Cristo Rey Network School or Jesuit High School
  • Represent diverse identities (i.e. students of color, first generation, low-income, LGBTQ+)
  • Meet Fairfield University’s academic profile for admission
  • Make significant/meaningful contributions to their community
  • Embody Jesuit values through character

Application Process

  1. Apply to Fairfield University using the Common Application by November 1 (Early Action Deadline) or January 15 (Regular Decision Deadline).
  • The application fee is waived for all Cristo Rey and Jesuit high school students. A fee waiver code can be obtained by contacting the Office of Undergraduate Admission.
  • Please note that an interview is required to complete the application.
  1. Initial selection notification will be sent as follows:
  • Early Action Applicants: January 15
  • Regular Decision Applicants: February 15
  1. Students selected for the first round will be asked to complete an additional essay and interview.
  1. Final selections will be released by March 15.
  2. Students will have 30 days to confirm acceptance of scholarship. Students may confirm by submitting the enrollment deposit as established by the Office of Admission.

For more information, contact Nakia Letang, Associate Director of Admission, at nletang@fairfield.edu.

FACHEX & Tuition Exchange

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FACHEX & Tuition Exchange

Fairfield University’s Faculty Children Exchange Program (FACHEX) and Tuition Exchange Program (TUIEX) are available to children of full-time Fairfield University faculty and staff, as well as qualifying children from other participating institutions. For details and guidelines, please visit the Office of Human Resources’ webpage.

Maguire Scholars Program

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Maguire Scholars Program

The Maguire Scholars Program was established at Fairfield University through the generosity of the Maguire Foundation, a philanthropic enterprise established by Mr. and Mrs. James Maguire to support the education of promising students.

These need-based scholarships are available to first-year students who have graduated from a select group of high schools as designated by the Maguire Foundation. In order to be considered, prospective first-year applicants must:

To be eligible for continuation of the scholarship funding from year to year, students must:

  • Be in good academic standing
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above
  • Be an active participant in school and/or the community, which can include participating in extra-curricular activities or volunteering
  • Participate in monthly academic mentoring
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by April 15
  • Have an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) between 0 and 15,000

Each Maguire Scholar will be expected to participate in the annual Maguire Scholars Program and contribute at least $5,000 per year toward the cost of tuition, room and board. The scholarship is eligible for renewal for up to four years of full time matriculation at Fairfield University.

For additional information regarding the Maguire Scholars Program, review and complete the Maguire Scholars application or contact Corry Unis, Vice President for Enrollment Management.

Frequently Asked Questions

Admission Process

Fairfield University uses the Common Application as its only application.

The application deadline for Early Action consideration is November 1, for Early Decision I November 15, and for Early Decision II and Regular Decision January 15.

Yes. Students who consider Fairfield University to be among their top choices for their undergraduate education and who would like to have their application reviewed early may submit their application under our Early Action program. Applicants for Early Action must submit a completed application by November 1.

Students who are certain that Fairfield University is their first choice for a college education, and are willing to commit to attending if admitted, are welcome to apply as an Early Decision candidate. Once admitted, an Early Decision candidate agrees to withdraw all other college applications and confirm his or her attendance at Fairfield.

A competitive applicant has a solid A-/B+ average in a strong college preparatory program which includes some honors and/or advanced placement classes. The middle 50% of admitted students scored between 1240-1370 on the SAT, and between 27 and 31 on the ACT.

Fairfield also seeks to enroll students for whom Fairfield is a good fit. We appreciate when students have taken the time to get to know the campus through visit programs, tours, and time with our counseling staff. Students who take an active role in their admission process demonstrate that they have an interest in Fairfield and have taken the necessary steps to decide that we may be the right place to continue their academic journey.

Fairfield University received over 12,600 applications for undergraduate admission for the Class of 2025. The Class of 2025 is more than 1,250 students. 

Test Optional Policy

Fairfield University uses a holistic review process in the evaluation of our prospective students, looking at all aspects of a student's record in making our admission assessment. This process reflects our educational mission as a Jesuit institution. We strongly believe in the education of the whole person and look for signs of academic and community engagement - factors that are not well measured by test scores.

Based on our research, we know that a student's academic record in high school - including the strength of curriculum and the student's performance in that curriculum - provides the best information about his/her potential success at Fairfield.

Our application review process for students who do not submit scores and those who do submit scores is very similar. We review all applications holistically. The most important aspect of any application is the student's academic record over four years in high school. We look carefully at the quality of the academic program the student has pursued, as well as their performance throughout high school. We also consider all of the subjective aspects of a student's application, including the personal statement, recommendations from teachers and counselors, and the student's interests and extra curricular activities.

Students who have chosen not to submit their scores must indicate on the Fairfield University Supplement to the Common Application that they have chosen that option. All students are encouraged to schedule an interview with us, but this is especially recommended for students who have chosen not to submit their scores.

Students should reflect on their standardized test scores and their overall academic performance in high school. If a student feels that the scores are an accurate reflection of his/her academic ability and potential and would like them to be considered by the admission committee, the scores should be included. If a student does not feel the scores accurately reflect his/her ability and potential, the scores do not need to be submitted.

No. Students who do not submit their test scores will have the same opportunities for admission as those who do.

Yes. Students who have been homeschooled during high school are still required to submit their SAT or ACT results. International students whose English is not their native language must submit the results of the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language).

This policy took effect beginning with first year students who applied for the fall of 2010, and for transfer students who applied for admission for the spring of 2010.

Yes. All applicants, regardless of whether or not they have submitted SAT or ACT results, will be eligible for merit scholarship consideration.

Financial Aid Process

Please visit the Office of Financial Aid's applications and deadlines page.

Yes. All admitted students are automatically considered for merit scholarships, regardless of whether they have completed an application for financial aid. To find out more about this scholarship opportunity, please visit our scholarships page.

Approximately 90% of students receive some type of financial assistance at Fairfield University.

AP and College Credits

Fairfield University will award 3 or 4 credit hours for each AP course taken by a student, provided that the student has taken the Advanced Placement Test prepared by the CEEB program and obtained a test score of 4 or 5. A maximum of 15 AP credits will be awarded. Official score reports should be sent to the Office of Academic Support and Retention.

Fairfield University recognizes the advanced nature of Higher Level International Baccalaureate courses and will award 3 or 4 credit hours provided a grade of 6 or 7 is achieved. A maximum of 15 IB credits will be awarded. Official score reports should be sent to the Office of Academic Support and Retention.

For students who pursue college courses while in high school, upon receipt of an official college transcript, the course work will be evaluated by the appropriate academic administrator in consultation with the respective curriculum area, provided the following criteria are met:

  • The course(s) must have been completed in a college environment and must have been taught by a college professor
  • The course(s)/credits were not used to satisfy high school graduation requirements
  • A final grade of “C” or better was earned.

College/school officials will determine the appropriateness of the transfer credit for the student’s program and decide whether it has met Fairfield’s curriculum standards.  A maximum of 15 credits of approved coursework will be awarded transfer credit. The grades will not be transferred.

College level courses will be evaluated upon receipt of the following documentation:

  • An official letter from the high school principal or school counselor stating that the course was taught on the college/university campus, by a member of the college/university faculty, and with regularly matriculated undergraduates at that college/university
  • An official transcript from the college/university
  • A course description and/or course syllabus
  • High school profile outlining all high school graduation requirements

It is the discretion of college/school officials to determine if AP, IB, or transfer credit may be used to exempt students from specific University courses or requirements.  Official score reports, transcripts, and related documentation should be sent to the Office of Academic Support and Retention.

General Questions

Housing is required of incoming freshmen who reside outside of a radius (typically 30 miles) determined by the University. A portion of upperclassmen enter a lottery each year to take advantage of additional housing options at Fairfield Beach. Approximately 80% of all students live on campus in a traditional residence hall, suite-style residence hall, an apartment or townhouse.

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