Friday, March 24, 2017

UVA Admitted 9950 Students to the Class of 2021

The University of Virginia accepted more than 9,950 applicants for its incoming class of 2021. In the fall, about 3,725 of them will arrive in Charlottesville for their first year at Thomas Jefferson’s university.

A record number of people applied to the university this year — nearly 36,800, up 13 percent from the previous year, according to a news release. The admitted class boasts an average SAT score of 1,419 (compared to last year’s average of 1,346), and “nearly all [graduated] in the top 10 percent of their high school classes,” according to the release.

All 50 states and 89 countries are represented in the admitted class. About 35 percent of the admitted students identify as ethnic minorities and more than 1,000 are first-generation college students.

Jeannine Lalonde, the university’s associate dean of admission, has posted unofficial statistics on admissions at her blog, titled “Notes from Peabody,” at

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Boston College Admitted 9200 Students to the Class of 2021

Boston College accepted 9,200 students out of 28,500 applications for admission to the Class of 2021, for an acceptance rate of 32 percent, Director of Undergraduate Admission John Mahoney said in an interview Monday. Last year’s rate was also 32 percent.

The accepted number combines the early action admission pool with the regular decision pool. In December, 2,900 students were admitted early action out of 9,000 applicants, for an early action acceptance rate of 33 percent.

Students accepted to the class of 2021 had a mean SAT of over 1400 on the new 1600-point scale, and a mean ACT of 33. SAT scores ranged from 1360 in the 25th percentile to 1480 in the 75th percentile, and ACT scores ranged from 32 in the 25th percentile to 34 in the 75th percentile.

The 28,500 total applications were down 1 percent from last year’s total. Early action applications, however, increased this year from 8,500 in 2015 to 9,000 in 2016, a 5 percent rise.

Students were admitted from 50 states and 61 foreign countries. Thirty-four percent of accepted students identify as AHANA—32 percent of the Class of 2020 identifies as AHANA or are international students of color. Mahoney said AHANA applications have also increased.

This year’s numbers were largely similar to past years.

“When you’re even in applications, as we are, there aren’t really powerful trends to report upon,” Mahoney said.

That said, a couple of numbers stood out. The Connell School of Nursing, for example, saw a 7 percent rise in applicants this year. Mahoney said CSON’s level of selectivity has increased in the last couple of years. Men still make up about 1 percent of applicants to CSON, Mahoney said.

“It’s one of those professions that is unjustifiably stereotyped as a female profession, so we’re just not seeing the volume still,” Mahoney said.

Geographically, the applicant breakdown stayed mostly the same. Applications from California, however, decreased 7 percent this year, although Mahoney said the state has been seeing a dip in high school graduates. International applicants are down 6 percent, which Mahoney attributed to a decline in applicants from China, which colleges and universities are seeing around the U.S.

BC accepted both the new SAT and the old, 2400-point version, but Mahoney said a relatively small percentage of applicants opted to submit the old version. There was some talk that raw scores might be a little higher on the 1400-point scale, but Mahoney said BC didn’t really see that come true.

“We didn’t really see [the new version] as a radical shift in terms of using the tests as part of the evaluation,” he said.

Admissions counselors effectively worked two days in one on Monday, March 13 in order to get decisions out last week, Mahoney said, because of the blizzard last Tuesday. Decisions are out a little earlier this year because Easter falls in mid-April, and admissions will be unable to hold yield programming for about four days next month.

Between April 1 and April 4, admissions staff members will travel to 19 different cities for admitted student receptions. April 8 is the Keith A. Francis Memorial Weekend yield programming for admitted AHANA students, a huge event for admissions, and April 9 is Admitted Eagle Day.

“I would say now the real work starts, because we’ve accepted some extraordinary students, and they’re being accepted by some other great schools, as well,” Mahoney said.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Hopkins Admitted 3117 Students to the Class of 2021

Hopkins released its admission decisions for the Class of 2021 on Friday afternoon. The 2,542 admitted students join the 575 students who were admitted in December through the University’s early decision program.

These students were selected from a pool of 26,578 applicants, at an 11.8 percent acceptance rate. The total number of applicants, which has been increasing for the past four years, fell by over 500 since last year’s admissions cycle. The acceptance rate also grew less selective by 0.3 percent in comparison to last year.

The new incoming class represents 48 states and 52 different countries. The most represented states include California, New York, New Jersey and Florida, while the most represented countries are Canada, India, South Korea, the United Kingdom and China.

Since the Class of 2017, the proportion of women in the admitted class has been steadily increasing. This year continues that trend, with women comprising 54 percent.

Last year, 41 percent of the admitted class decided to enroll at Hopkins. This year’s newly admitted students will have the opportunity to visit campus during the Spring Open House and Overnight Program (SOHOP) on April 5-6, and on April 12-13.

Prospective students have until May 1 to confirm their spot at the University.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

MIT Admitted 1438 Students to the Class of 2021

Between Early and Regular Action, 20,247 students applied to join the MIT Class of 2021. As of today (inclusive of Early Action), we have offered admission to 1,438 students.

These 1,438 students are truly exceptional. The admitted Class of 2021 includes musicians and mathematicians, farmhands and physicists, rocketeers and raconteurs, from Albania to Zambia and everywhere in between. Individually they represent more than 60 countries and 1,000 high schools; together, they constitute an incredible community, each contributing a set of rare skills and perspectives while holding in common the highest caliber of cognition and character.

We often say we don’t admit numbers to MIT, we admit people. Yet this isn’t quite true either; we admit classes, cohorts which have been curated with care to create the best possible team to climb the mountain that is MIT.

There are also those students who may be climbing other mountains, with other people, next fall. Of the students to whom we do not offer admission today, we have placed a small number on our waitlist and informed the balance that we will not be able to admit them to the Class of 2021. Turning away so many kind, generous, super-smart students has been more than difficult: it has been truly painful.

If you are among them, then all I can say is that MIT is just another place. If it is amazing, it is amazing not because of some occult magick embedded in the Great Dome, but because the people here make it so. If you spend the next few years trying to make wherever you are as amazing as you can (as you are), then someday you'll look back on this Pi Day and realize it all worked out okay.

I'm closing comments on this blog post to concentrate conversation in the open threads for admitted, waitlisted, and not admitted students. Answers to frequently asked questions for waitlisted students can be found here, with more information about next steps to come in early April.

Congratulations to the Class of 2021. I wish all of our applicants well. No matter where you enroll next fall, please make it a better place. I know you can. I hope you will.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Dartmouth Received 20,021 Applications for Class of 2021

The College received a total of 20,021 applications for the Class of 2021, a 3.2 percent decrease from the 20,675 applications received for the class of 2020. In comparison, early-decisions applications saw a 3.7 percent increase over last year, comprising a record-large early-decision pool of 1,999, of which 555 students were accepted.

Director of admissions Paul Sunde said the number of students the College admits in the early decision process is a function of the strength, quality and diversity of the pool. He said that these factors, rather than speculation about the number of regular decision applications, drove the decision to admit a record number of students.

In terms of the 3.2 percent decrease in total applications, which follows a trend of decreasing application numbers, Sunde said that he did not think that the recent years’ variations have been a trend. He added that he believes the one to three percentage point differences indicated stability in the number of applications.
Founder of college admissions consulting firm Ivy Coach Bev Taylor said that the percentage decrease was not a significant number and that while numbers fluctuate year to year, it does not necessarily mean that highly selective colleges have became more or less competitive.

“More students applying doesn’t mean it gets more difficult [to get into the college],” she said. “All highly selective colleges are getting better at is getting students to apply by making [the colleges] more noticeable.”

Taylor said that in recent years, Dartmouth has been more focused on and successful in recruiting international students, which was reflected in the numbers for early decision applications. She said that students may choose to apply early decision to the College because there may be a higher chance of acceptance through the early decision process than through regular decision or early action at other colleges. This could explain the record high number for early decision applicants this year.

“Dartmouth would rather see [early decision] numbers go up because it’s better for yield,” Taylor said. “It’s not so much the percentages [as the] yield.”

Yield refers to the percentage of applicants who accept a college’s offer, which would be close to 100 percent for early decision applicants.

Founder, director and lead educational consultant at IvySelect College Consulting Michael Goran said that there may be certain initiatives that could impact the number of applications, such as the change to being need-aware, rather than need-blind, for international applicants. However, he said that there did not seem to be anything specific that was adversely affecting the numbers at Dartmouth. Rather, he said that students may look at the rural environment of Dartmouth compared to the more urban environments of other Ivy League or other selective colleges to decide whether or not they would apply.

More and more students are also aware of the advantage that is conferred by applying early, Goran said. He said that while a school such as Yale University may state that applying early or regular makes no difference for the student’s chances of acceptance, students are still actively encouraged to apply early due to the higher number of accepted students through the early decision process.

“It’s the rising awareness of [early decision] nationally and internationally, as well as the perception that you get a boost in the [early decision] process from the standpoint of sheer numbers,” Goran said. “There are fewer applications, and there’s the perceived feeling that you have the best chance of admissions by applying early.”

The Dartmouth admissions website notes that early decision applicants are admitted at a higher rate than early decision applicants, though it cautions that the admit rate is “somewhat misleading” because it includes recruited athletes.

Goran said that rather than comparing the number of regular decision applicants to previous years at Dartmouth, it was more important to see the growth relative to other schools, including other Ivy League colleges, in particular.

“Dartmouth has stayed relatively flat while the other Ivies have generally increased at a higher rate,” Goran said. “But again, it may be more to do with the unique qualities of Dartmouth and the school being in a rural location, which [may] not necessarily be for everyone, no matter how great the academics.”

Three other Ivy League institutions saw record numbers of applicants this year. Harvard University’s applications rose by 1.2 percent, from 39,044 to 39,494. The University of Pennsylvania saw a 3.8 percent increase in applications, from 38,918 for its Class of 2020 to 40,394 for its Class of 2021. Yale University received 32,891 applications, a five percent increase over the previous year. Other schools in the Ivy League have yet to report their application numbers.

Sunde said that the primary focus of the College was on the quality and diversity of the entering class, which was the most important aspect of the admissions office’s work.

“I think our entering class on any of those measures stands very strongly,” Sunde said. “And so, we certainly observed the increases at other institutions ... but I think our primary focus is on our own pool.”

Sunde said that the admissions office does not yet have breakdowns for diversity in the class or class statistics such as test scores and GPAs. He also said there is a consistent pattern of when data becomes available, and that Dartmouth is as transparent or more transparent than other schools that may be considered peer institutions.

The three largest countries of origin for international students were China, India and Canada for the Class of 2021. Sunde said that in most years, these three countries would be, if not the top three, in the top five or top 10 countries for international students.

Linda Lee, a high school senior from Valencia, California who applied to Dartmouth through the regular decision process, said that she was able to understand Dartmouth better as a college through the interview process, during which prospective students are interviewed by Dartmouth alumni.

“Other than talking about myself and learning about Dartmouth, I got a really good look at Dartmouth because of [the interviewer’s] character,” she said. “The most I gained from that interview was seeing the type of students who went to Dartmouth.”

Lee said that the essays were the most important part of the application process for her because it was the only component she could focus on to make herself a competitive applicant. She noted that it was challenging because she not only had to write well but also needed to convey her appeal to the admissions officer reading her application. She noted that she did not have access to college counselors to guide her, relying instead on networking and talking with other prospective students to understand the process.

This year, Dartmouth debuted several new essay prompts that students can choose between to respond to. One prompt was, “‘It’s not easy being green’ was a frequent lament of Kermit the Frog. Discuss.”

Ira Frederick Morgan III, an applicant from Dayton, Ohio, said that as a low-income student, he appreciated the substantial financial aid that Dartmouth was able to offer and how students, regardless of income, would have similar opportunities to higher-income students.

Morgan said that as both a low-income student and as a first generation student, he was in the dark about the application process and found it difficult to gather the money needed to pay the fees for the college application. He also said that he had trouble being able to fully express himself in his college admissions essay.

“I didn’t want to sound like a pity party even though I have gone through a lot of struggles,” Morgan said. “Even though [these struggles were] a large part of who I was, it was a hard thing for me to use and balance out. In that, I lost a part of who I was.”

During the early application cycle, 555 students were accepted for the Class of 2021, forming around 47 percent of the incoming class. Regular decision applicants will be notified by the College on March 30.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Harvard Received 39,494 Applications for Class of 2021

Harvard College received 39,494 applications to its Class of 2021, setting a new record for the third year in a row and surpassing last year’s total by 450 applications.
Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid William R. Fitzsimmons ’67 attributed the 1.2 percent rise in applications to the popularity of the College’s new Theater, Dance, and Media concentration, its financial aid program, and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

This year’s applicant pool saw a 12.3 percent increase in students interested in studying computer science, building off a 22.1 percent increase in interest in the field last year.

The pool also saw a 3 percent increase in prospective humanities concentrators. In a press release, Deborah Foster, director of Undergraduate Studies in Theater, Dance and Media, said she was “astounded” by the number of high school students who had contacted her about the new concentration, which kicked off in 2015.

The racial and ethnic composition of the pool was similar to that of last year, but saw small increases across several groups: 21.8 percent of applicants identified as Asian American, 12.6 percent as Latino, 10.5 percent as African American, and 2.3 percent as Native Americans and Native Hawaiians. In an interview, Fitzsimmons said the admissions office would continue to ramp up its recruitment of students from minority backgrounds in the coming years.

“The reality is if you don’t recruit a very diverse student body, your university will be less relevant to the country as time goes by, and it’s not a mystery to see what the country’s going to look like,” Fitzsimmons said.

The number of women applying to the College increased by 2.5 percent, and women comprising 49.9 percent of the total applicant pool.

“When I attended Harvard it was 4 to 1 male to female. Women could not use the undergraduate library. Women could not go into the front door of the Harvard Club of New York until 1973,” Fitzsimmons said. “It’s been changing pretty rapidly.”

The Class of 2021 will be the first class subject to the College’s penalties on members of final clubs and Greek organizations.

While the geographic composition of the applicant pool was also similar to previous years, Fitzsimmons said a nationwide plateau in the number of graduating high school seniors—particularly in the Northeast and Midwestern United States—could decrease applications from those regions in the coming years. Conversely, the Southwest and the South, as well as certain Western states such as California, will experience an increase in high school seniors.

Fitzsimmons said that President Donald Trump’s recent executive orders regarding immigration and travel to the United States did not impact this application cycle because the application deadline was January 1, nearly three weeks before Trump’s inauguration.

Going forward, though, Fitzsimmons said he plans to continue the admissions office’s pursuit of top students from around the world, and to direct various Harvard services to assist them in the process of obtaining a visa and arriving in Cambridge.

“We will just continue to take the best students, wherever they’re from, whatever their citizenship is,” Fitzsimmons said.

Harvard has already offered admission to 938 early applicants from a pool of 6,473, representing a 14.5 percent acceptance rate—the lowest since the College reinstated its early action program in 2011. Last year, the College accepted a record-low 5.2 percent of applicants to its Class of 2020.

The College will release admissions decisions on March 30, and admitted students will have until May 1 to accept or decline their offers.

—Staff writer William S. Flanagan can be reached at

—Staff writer Michael E. Xie can be reached at

Friday, January 27, 2017

Yale Received 32,891 Applications for Class of 2021

This year, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions received the largest number of applications ever submitted to Yale College, with 32,891 applying to the class of 2021 as of Jan. 26.
The record-breaking figure represents a 5 percent jump from last year, the first time that the number of applications had ever topped the 31,000 mark. This year’s increase is larger than the 4 percent jump in applications, from 30,227 to 31,439, between the classes of 2019 and 2020. The number of students to be admitted this year will increase by between 300 and 400 with the opening of the two new residential colleges in the fall.
In light of this year’s record, Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Jeremiah Quinlan emphasized that long-term trends in application numbers were more important than year-to-year fluctuations.
“The increased global mobility of top secondary school students seeking higher education, and technological changes to the college admissions process — such as the dramatic increase in the use of online applications, especially the Common Application — have all resulted in substantially larger applicant pools at Yale and many of our peer institutions,” Quinlan said in an email.
This year’s application numbers represent a 70 percent increase from the 19,323 applications Yale College received a decade ago for the class of 2011, Quinlan added.
He said the admissions committee would meet from the middle of February through March to review applications and release its decisions on March 30 along with those of the other Ivy League schools.
Director of Outreach and Communications Mark Dunn ’07 said the number of applications is less important than the quality and diversity of the applicant pool.
While noting that the “true strength” of the pool could not be assessed until the admissions committee reviewed all applications in full, Dunn outlined several notable trends in applicant demographics in recent years.
According to Dunn, over the past five admissions cycles, the number of applications from high school students in the United States has grown by about 10 percent. During the same time period, the number of applications from students who identify as a member of an underrepresented racial or ethnic group has increased more than 27 percent.
In particular, Dunn said the number of applications from black students has increased by 43 percent, and those from Hispanic or Latino students have grown by 36 percent over the last five years.
The number of applications from students who will be the first in their family to earn a bachelor’s degree has increased by 20 percent and the number of applications coming from students in the southeast or southwest of the United States has increased by 22 percent over the same period, according to Dunn.