Over 13,000 regular decision applications from Georgetown hopefuls flooded the Office of Undergraduate Admissions this winter, and pending finalization of data, the university expects a record 20,050 applications for the Class of 2016.
This year's record numbers mark a 4.2 percent increase from last year's
pool of 19,228 total applicants. Earlier in the admissions cycle, the
university also saw a record 6,750 early action applications, up 1.4
percent from 6,658 applications to the Class of 2015.
"I think when we look back at this year we'll see, for lack of a better
term, that we probably got a little bigger market share of the top
students," Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Charles Deacon said.
Each of the four undergraduate schools experienced a significant spike
in applications this year. According to early estimates, the College
received roughly 12,000 applications, up 2.5 percent from last year; the
School of Foreign Service received 3,600 applications, up 5.6 percent;
the McDonough School of Business drew 3,100 applications, up 5.5
percent; and the School of Nursing and Health Studies received 1,200
applications, up 4.3 percent.
Deacon stressed that Georgetown has not consciously made any changes
intended to boost its application numbers and thereby decrease its
"We're definitely not aiming for 30,000 applications," Deacon said.
"How would you be able to do what I call a ‘holistic admissions
Despite this year's jump, Deacon and the admissions committee expect
application rates to plateau in future years because of shifting
demographics. According to Deacon, the population of potential
applicants had been growing for about 15 years, but the trend has
"This appears to be a peaking out year," he said.
Out of the roughly 20,050 total applications received this year, 6,833
came through the early action program. In December, Georgetown admitted
1,012 students to the Class of 2016, 100 fewer students than were
admitted early last year, bringing the early action acceptance rate down
to 14.8 percent from last year's rate of about 16 percent.
Georgetown, one of the few universities in the country that has a lower
acceptance rate for its early pool than its regular decision pool, had
an overall acceptance rate last year of 18 percent.
According to Deacon, many top schools, such as the University of
Pennsylvania and Columbia University, lock in nearly half of their
freshman class during the early round of applications. Harvard, which
reinstituted its early action option this year, accepted 21 percent of
applicants from its early pool, a number much higher than its overall
acceptance rate of under 7 percent.
According to Deacon, Georgetown is more selective during the early application process.
"We only accept the best students early," he said.
Deacon added that the admissions office expects the surge in
applications to be accompanied by an increase in the yield rate, the
percent of accepted students who decide to attend Georgetown. Last
year's yield rate of 48.5 percent marked an increase over previous
years, which had fluctuated between 42 and 47 percent.
"This year we might get a 50 percent overall yield rate, which we
haven't done since we started competing with the other top schools,"