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Last updated February 28, 2024

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What to Do After Being Accepted Early Decision

Key Takeaway

After being accepted Early Decision, it's important to read the acceptance email thoroughly, secure your seat, withdraw other college applications, celebrate, and reach out to admissions or financial aid officers for guidance.

Congrats—you’ve been accepted Early Decision! 🥳

After you throw yourself a party and take a huge sigh of relief, you’re going to have some tasks on your to-do list to check off, including withdrawing your applications from other schools.

Congratulations! You've been accepted ED

After you open that glorious acceptance email, don’t forget that there are a few things you need to do next. The binding nature of an Early Decision application makes your ED acceptance even more complicated.

Since the Early Decision Agreement that you, your guardians, and your school counselor signed is a contract that requires you to attend your ED school if you’re admitted, you’ll need to do more than simply accept your offer of admission. You’ll also need to withdraw your applications from any other schools you applied to.

But the good news is that after you jump through all the logistical hoops, your life is going to get a whole lot easier! Since you already know where you’ll be going to school, you can enjoy your senior year without the looming anxiety of college applications.

With that end goal in mind, let’s go over the five things you need to do after you receive your ED acceptance letter.

Five things to do when you’ve been accepted Early Decision

First, we recommend that you celebrate—this is a huge achievement! After that, you’ll need to complete these five tasks:

  1. Read your acceptance email thoroughly: You might be tempted to skim over the text with all your excitement, but you should give it a second read-through in more detail when you’re ready. Make sure your acceptance is unconditional, with no strange caveats that might jeopardize your enrollment.
  2. Secure your seat: Reserve your spot by paying the seat deposit or completing any other enrollment procedures outlined in the acceptance email. If you don’t pay your enrollment deposit soon enough, you might lose out on your spot or get a letter from the school about your ED agreement.
  3. Retract applications from other colleges: Now that you're bound to your ED college, it's time to withdraw your applications from other schools. This is not just a contractual obligation; it's also a courtesy to other students who might be eyeing the spot you no longer need. With your application retracted, you might just make room for someone else.
  4. Celebrate: You've secured a spot in your top-choice college. That's a reason to celebrate. Go out with friends, throw a small party, or just curl up with a good book. It's your moment, so savor it and relax.
  5. Reach out to an admissions officer or a financial aid officer: Once the dust of the acceptance has settled, consider reaching out to an admissions officer at your ED school. They can guide you on the next steps, assuage any lingering doubts, and ensure that you're not missing anything vital. If you have a question about financial aid, reach out to the financial aid office.

How to Withdraw College Applications

The most tedious part of your to-do list is to withdraw all your other college applications. It’s not hard, but it does take a little bit of work on your end.

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Find your complete college list. If you don’t have one already, write a quick list down. Do this so you can check schools off as you go to make sure you don’t miss any.

  2. For the schools that have an application portal: Log into the portal. If you have not yet received your admissions decision, click around to see if there’s an option to withdraw your application. If you’ve already been accepted to the school through Early Action, you may have the option to decline your offer of admission—do that instead of withdrawing your application. You may be prompted to provide a reason for withdrawing or declining. You can simply say that you were accepted to your ED school.

  3. For the schools that do not have an application portal, or schools with an application portal that does not have a “withdraw application” option: You’ll need to email your admissions officer or the Office of Admissions directly. If you have your admissions officer’s contact information, contact them. If you don’t, find the main email address for the Office of Admissions. Send an email that has your name and high school. Make sure the email address is the one you used when you submitted your Common App—that’ll make it easy for them to find you in their system. Write a quick, polite email that says you would like to withdraw your application.

    Here’s a template:



    Dear Office of Admission,

    I was accepted to my ED school, so I am writing to withdraw my application.

    [If you want, you can say something nice about the school you’re withdrawing from here: I really enjoyed my visit and X and have appreciated your support through my application process.]


    Kylie Kistner

    Admit Report High School

After you’re done, double check your list to make sure you didn’t miss any. Now you can officially start the process of becoming a college student!

After that, you’ll start the enrolling student process.

Once you’ve officially accepted your seat at the college or university, continue to keep an eye on your email.

At some point, you’ll be prompted to create your new university email. After that, you’ll have a whole bunch of tasks to complete to be ready to start classes in the fall. The school will direct you to sign up for things like housing and dining plans, orientation, tuition payments, and more.


You've been accepted Early Decision. Congratulations! After celebrating, read your acceptance email carefully, secure your seat by following the instructions in the acceptance email, retract your other applications, and check in with an admissions officer at your ED school to ensure you're not missing anything. With these steps, you'll transition smoothly into college.

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