Legacies are the children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins or siblings of alumni, alumnae and current students.
The Hobart and William Smith Colleges Legacy Admissions Program celebrates alumni and alumnae who make HWS part of their family tradition. During the admissions process, our program is designed to help prospective legacies determine if HWS is the right fit. Later, the program offers financial and academic support intended to help students make the most of their HWS education.
During the application process, legacies are assigned a personal admissions counselor who remains with the student throughout the admissions process. The counselor is available to answer questions, help students connect with faculty and coaches, and help families resolve any questions that may arise.
Throughout the year, legacy families are invited to Legacy-only Open House events, admission application workshops and off-campus receptions.
Once an application for admission is submitted, legacy applications automatically rise to the top of the application pile. Legacy students' applications are first to be read and first to be notified by the listed decision mailing dates.
Admitted legacy students receive an automatic $5,000 scholarship. Top academic legacy students are eligible for one of five Legacy Scholarships worth an additional $20,000. We also encourage legacy applicants to apply for our merit or need-based scholarships. If a legacy applicant receives a scholarship greater than $5,000, they will keep that scholarship, in lieu of the Legacy Scholarship. Legacy students who enroll in the Pathways program their first semester at HWS are also guaranteed internships through the Salisbury Center for Career Services and Professional Development.
Independent liberal arts colleges distinctive for their strength in study abroad, service, career planning and highly individualized educations.
The Hobart and William Smith campus is a launching point to many worlds: intellectual, social, professional and international. On this campus, from the biology lab to the boathouse, from the student-run organic garden to the Quad, students join a close-knit community where they inspire one another to achieve and make a difference.
Geneva, New York, less than an hour from Ithaca, Syracuse and Rochester. HWS is situated on 195 tree-lined acres on the shores of Seneca Lake, widest and deepest of the 11 Finger Lakes. Featuring a mix of classic brick and stone buildings, the campus is within walking distance of downtown Geneva. The region is known for its culture, natural splendor, wineries, and vast and varied options for outdoor recreation.
Originally founded as two separate colleges (Hobart for men in 1822 and William Smith for women in 1908), HWS operates under a coordinate college system. All students share the same campus, faculty, administration and curriculum. Each college maintains its own traditions, deans, student government and athletic department.
2,272 students from 40 states and 28 countries. In the past decade, students have earned such national honors as Rhodes, Marshall, Fulbright, Gates Cambridge, Goldwater, Udall and Princeton-in-Asia scholarships and awards.
HWS professors work closely with students to shape the hands-on experiences— research, study abroad, internships, volunteer projects—that bring students’ interests to life. With an 11 to 1 student to faculty ratio, the average class size is 17 students. HWS offers 45 majors and 66 minors, and 100 percent of HWS students experience interdisciplinary learning.
In wide-ranging courses, HWS students develop the kinds of creative and analytical skills they can draw on in any career. Thanks to a network of 5,000 alums and parents ready to offer advice and connections, they turn their passions into real-world opportunities and careers. HWS graduates are living and leading in all corners of the world, advancing science, starting their own companies, earning doctorates and improving communities.
“Through different decision paths, many of my family members and I arrived at Hobart and William Smith. My grandparents, Henry Hobart Tallmadge IV ’42, and Carol (Weatherly) Tallmadge ’42, my parents, Bill Oberfield ’67 and Lynn (Tallmadge) Oberfield ’68, my brother Zach Oberfield ’98, and I each came to the Colleges for various reasons. Though we had different experiences, we share a fondness for the Colleges and agree that it served us well. Clearly, the atmosphere at HWS, the emphasis on liberal arts, a diverse student population, the opportunity for leadership, and the focus on character development and service drew us all. Attending HWS provided us a wonderful shared experience and has been a great gift.”
–Jillian Elizabeth Tallmadge Oberfield ’01
While any shared experience has the potential to bring people closer, sharing an alma mater seems to have its own special power. From siblings who followed each other to the shores of Seneca Lake within the past five years, to families whose lineage at the Colleges dates back to the mid-19th century, Hobart and William Smith have a strong, proud tradition of family ties.
Here, though they may be parted by generations, family members learn to appreciate the same revered spaces and share a deep, meaningful bond that stretches across decades. For some, Reunion Weekend becomes just as much a family reunion as it is an opportunity to reconnect with old friends.
Simply put, Hobart and William Smith becomes home.
We are very proud to have 117 legacy students join us on campus as members of the Classes of 2017. Their decision to attend HWS, following in the footsteps of siblings, parents, uncles, aunts and grandparents, speaks volumes about the lasting impression this campus and this community leave on every individual who puts down roots here. That so many graduates of Hobart and William Smith continue to encourage their family members to enroll attests to the quality and value of an HWS education.
Thank you for your commitment to Hobart and William Smith and your interest in making the Colleges part of your family tradition.
Mark D. Gearan
"Ten McCooeys have gone to HWS and everyone has walked away happy. My brothers, sister and I talk about HWS so fondly, so our kids want to check it out. Once they see the place, they fall in love, too. I think it’s something about the small size and personal attention. When I visit campus, I still run into my old professors, and they still remember me. They’re still at HWS and teaching the next generation of McCooeys. It’s a terrific connection."
–Trustee Herbert J. McCooey, Jr. ’76, P’04, P’09, father of Kerry Hurley McCooey ’02, Herbert J. McCooey III ’04 and Matt McCooey ’09; brother of Sean McCooey ’78, P’08, P’12, Pat McCooey ’82 and Daniel F. McCooey ’90; uncle of Bryan McCooey ’08 and Brendan McCooey ’12; sister of Dolores McCooey Lentz '92
“My wife and I have been active members of the alum associations and always come back for Reunions. For our daughters, HWS became almost like a second home before they even applied, and we didn’t dissuade them from coming here. I know that the education is great, and I know that they’ll find a job after graduation. There are so many great networking opportunities and so many alums who help students get internships and jobs.”
–Rich Cytryn ’75, P’14, P’16, father of Courtney Cytryn ’14 and Jennifer Cytryn ’16
“Just about all the adults in my life went to HWS, so I grew up hearing stories about it. When I got here, I completely fell in love with the campus and the interdisciplinary education. I have been able to make HWS a special place that is my own, separate from my long legacy. It is definitely a lot of fun that I spent my first year on the same floor my mom lived on during her first year, and I always laugh when I see my dad’s photo on the wall at Delta.”
–Anna Dorman ’14, daughter of Jan McGonagle ’87, P’14 and Dean Dorman ’87, P’14
“None of us were pressured to go to HWS, it just happened as a natural transition because we were each so comfortable with the Colleges and the people. We each carved out our own existence on campus but the fact that we were there consecutively for a decade and a half means we all have common experiences. We had many of the same faculty members and we still share a lot of the same friends.”
–Janice Rawlins- Ferguson ’76, sister of Philip Rawlins ’75, Michael Rawlins ’80, Marilyn Rawlins-Grundy ’86 and Norman Rawlins ’88
“Three generations of my family have attended HWS. The first two have benefited greatly from the outstanding liberal arts education and gone on to successful lives of consequence. My daughter is there now in no small part because HWS has become home for our family. The Colleges are near and dear to our hearts, and we know she is going to receive a first-rate education that will prepare her for the future. We’re excited for her to experience HWS.”
–Edward Cooper ’86, P’16, father of Hannah Cooper ’16; husband of Robin Savits Cooper ’87, P’16; and son-in-law of Joel Savits ’56, P’82, P’87, P’90 and Jacqueline Wrubel Savits ’57, P’82, P’87, P’90