Duke University has notified 547 students that they will be the first members of the Class of 2013.
This year, 1,539 high school seniors applied through the Early Decision admission process, an increase of 291 (or 23 percent) over last year and the second largest number in school history.
Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Christoph Guttentag attributes the higher number of applicants “to an increasing recognition that Duke has worked hard to be affordable for students from all economic backgrounds -– two-thirds of the increase in applications was from students indicating that they would apply for need-based aid.
“It also reflects a greater effort on our part to discuss the benefits of applying Early Decision. And in an uncertain economy, I think people especially value the benefits of an exceptional education.”
Duke is one of a limited number of schools with a “need-blind” admissions policy, which means that all U.S. applicants are accepted regardless of their ability to pay for college. Duke guarantees it will meet 100 percent of demonstrated financial need.
More than 40 percent of Duke’s undergraduates receive financial aid to attend the university. Last December, Duke announced significant enhancements to its financial aid program to provide access to a Duke education for lower- and middle-income families. (See http://news.duke.edu/2007/12/financialaid.html/)
The number of students accepted early this year is 75 more than last year, and represents the largest number of Early Decision offers in the last 10 years. The group is almost evenly spilt between men and women -- 275 men, 272 women.
Those who apply via the Early Decision process know they want to attend Duke and commit to enroll at the university if they receive an offer of admission. Of those admitted, 447 students were admitted to the Trinity School of Arts and Sciences and 100 were admitted to the Pratt School of Engineering.
Of those admitted, North Carolina, New York and California were the most represented states. Overall, 41 states and the District of Columbia were represented; there were also 38 students from other countries.
Guttentag said a larger applicant pool “allowed us to admit both a larger and academically more qualified group of students Early Decision. I’m delighted that we were able to fill almost a third of the incoming class with such a talented and enthusiastic group of students.
“At the same time, it’s important that we’ve left plenty of room for what I expect will be a robust Regular Decision pool.”
The students accepted through Early Decision comprise about 33 percent of the first-year class that will begin in fall 2009. Students accepted in the spring through Regular Decision account for the remaining 67 percent of the estimated total of 1,665 students Duke expects in the Class of 2013.
The deadline for Regular Decision applications to Duke is Jan. 2, 2009. For more information about the application process, go to http://admissions.duke.edu.
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