flowers in front of University Hall

Early Bird Program

Designed to give high school juniors the opportunity to get a jump start on their college search and apply for admission before their senior year even begins, the Early Bird Program is non-binding and the first of its kind in New Jersey.

How does it work?

Interested juniors apply for pre-admission to Montclair’s Fall 2024 class through an abbreviated online application. The application is now closed. Students must provide a copy of their high school transcript through the online application. The transcript should show junior year courses and mid-year grades (or two marking periods). After the online application is submitted, applicants will have to submit two follow-up forms before the official admissions review is completed. We will notify applicants via email when the additional follow-up forms need to be submitted.

Students who are pre-admitted are guaranteed admission for Fall 2024 and our Admissions team will submit their official application on their behalf in August, which means there won’t be an application fee due! Additionally, applicants will have access to a personalized portal to help them stay on track.

Are all majors eligible for the Early Bird Program?

Students of all majors can apply for junior admission to the Early Bird Program. Students applying for restricted majors, such as Nursing, Musical Theatre and Visual Communication Design, will be reviewed for admission to those programs when their application is submitted and participate in the audition or portfolio review process, if required. As part of the Junior Admission process, students can be admitted to the University separate from their major. The following programs are restricted majors:

  • Animation and Visual Effects
  • Illustration
  • Recording Arts
  • Dance
  • Family Science and Human Development
  • Jurisprudence, Law and Society
  • Music
  • Musical Theatre
  • Music Therapy
  • Nursing
  • Product Design
  • Theatre
  • Visual Communication Design

Do any majors require additional materials?

The following majors require an audition or portfolio:

  • Audition: Dance, Musical Theatre, Music, Music Therapy and Theatre
  • Portfolio: Animation and Visual Effects, Illustration, and Visual Communication Design. A portfolio is optional, but encouraged for Product Design.

When will I find out if I’ve been accepted?

Decisions will be sent on or before July 1, 2023.

What if I’m not admitted?

We will provide guidance to students who are not admitted to the Early Bird Program through telecounseling appointments on what they can do to strengthen their application to apply again after August 1, 2023 for Fall 2024.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

Students who are eligible for merit scholarship will be informed of their award as part of the Junior Admit process. Official scholarship and financial aid awarding will begin in July. A FAFSA must be filed for a need-based financial aid package to be reviewed.

What are the benefits of the Early Bird Program?

  • Find out if you’re admitted to Montclair before senior year even begins
  • Receive your scholarship offer in July
  • Access to exclusive on-campus events during the fall semester
  • Early access to admitted student webinars, financial aid webinars, financial aid telecounseling and enrollment coaching.


Set up a telecounseling appointment with an admissions counselor or email with questions.