Holy Names University
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First Year Students

Requirements for Admission

Freshman Applicants to our Undergraduate Programs are considered for admission based on the overall strength of their high school preparation, SAT or ACT scores, personal essay, letter of recommendation, extracurricular activities, and individual talents and achievements.

If you have questions about the application process, please contact us at admissions@hnu.edu or 800-430-1321.

Learn about our Early Admit Program »

Required Application Materials

  • HNU Application for Admission [ get details see more or less ]
  • High School Transcript [ get details see more or less ]
    • Request an official copy of your high school transcript showing at least six semesters of work.
    • Transcripts should be mailed directly from the issuing school to Holy Names University or if hand delivered, should be in a envelope sealed by the issuing school.
  • SAT I or ACT Scores [ get details see more or less ]
    • Take the SAT I or ACT test and be sure to include Holy Names University as a recipient of the scores.
    • Our SAT code is 4059 and the ACT code is 0230.
    • Scores reported on your high school transcript are also acceptable.
  • Essay [ get details see more or less ]

    Holy Names University is a community of educators and students dedicated to learning through a framework of social justice and service. HNU is also a dynamic and very diverse community where students prepare for leadership in a global world by living and studying with people from many different backgrounds. 

    One of the requirements for admission to the HNU community is for you to tell us a little bit about yourself in the context of social justice, service, and diversity. While there are several ways to consider these three issues, we are interested in knowing more about the ways you see them. 

    Please respond thoughtfully to one of the following questions in no more than two pages.  Double space your responses and submit them as an attachment to an e-mail.

    Students applying to our 2+2 Nursing Program must choose prompt #2.

    1. Please describe a difficult situation in your life where you needed to overcome adversity. What did you learn from that experience and how does it help you better understand other people?
    2. Please describe a situation in your life when a person you respected would have said you were a leader. As you think about that situation, describe whether you were serving others, leading by example, motivating, organizing, or all of the above. What do you think the relationship is between leading and serving?
    3. Please describe a situation in your life when you were involved with someone who was very different from you. As you think about that situation, describe what diversity means to you and what you believe are the benefits of living and studying in a diverse environment.
  • Letter of Recommendation [ get details see more or less ]
    • We require all students to submit a minimum of one recommendation and a maximum of three from a counselor, teacher, coach, work supervisor, or community member with whom you have worked. It is strongly recommended that you submit a letter of recommendation from a teacher. They may use the Undergraduate Academic Recommendation Form (PDF) or write a letter and return it directly to the Office of Admission.

      Letters of recommendation may be sent directly to:
      Holy Names University
      Office of Admission
      3500 Mountain Blvd.
      Oakland, CA 94619

Nursing Students

Admission Requirements and Procedures »

Additional Requirements for International Students

Holy Names University accepts international students on a regular basis. This is done to provide a genuine, cross-cultural educational experience for both international and domestic students. Holy Names University's goal is to provide opportunities to intelligent and outgoing students who desire an educational experience in the United States.
Admission Requirements and Procedures »

Requirements for the Three-Year Degree Program

To be eligible for our Three-Year Degree Program, you must meet the requirements for freshman admission as well as:

  • Have at least 12 units of Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate (usually strong passes in two subjects).
  • Be ready to declare a major upon entrance.
  • Demonstrate the ability, through strong academic performance, to carry 18 units per semester.

How we Accept AP and IB Credit

Holy Names University grants up to 30 units of credit toward your college graduation requirements if you earn scores of 3, 4, or 5 on the Advanced Placement exams, or earn a score of 5, 6, or 7 on the higher level of the International Baccalaureate exam.

Undergraduate Admissions Counselors

You will be assigned an admission counselor based on the location of your high school.  Please contact your counselor with any questions regarding the admissions process.

Meet your admissions counselor »

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