The Class of 2019 consists of 1,319 students from 46 states and Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and Guam, with a plurality coming from California, New Jersey and New York.
Nearly 37.6 percent of students came from these three states, a slight decrease from last year’s 38.7 percent. Alaska, Mississippi, Nebraska and South Dakota are not represented in the class, according to Dean of Admissions Janet Rapelye.
Vidur Beharry ’19 comes from New York, one of the most represented states in his class, yet was the only student accepted to Princeton from his high school, DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx. He said that he applied to the University with an ounce of hope that he would gain admission, and that he had first heard about the institution through the Questbridge program.
“Being a low-income student, I was scouring for scholarships to afford a top-tier education,” Beharry said. “I also had to maneuver my way around paying to send SAT/ACT scores, and find ways to send my recommendation letters because all the teachers who had written me one were removed from my school.”
Daniel Han ’19 comes from Guam, one of the least-represented of the states and territories at the University. Only one other student from his high school was accepted in the past few years, but chose not to matriculate. Han said he had heard of the University’s world-class education and was not deterred from applying.
“I made sure to maintain good grades throughout high school while also pursuing varied extracurricular activities that interested me, such as participating in local volunteer efforts and in a school book club,” he said. “The part of the application process that stood out most to me was probably the interview; Princeton was the only college that offered an in-person interview to me.”
The Class of 2019 includes 177 international students from 51 countries, which accounts for 13.4 percent of the class. Rapelye noted that there are more international students in the Class of 2019 than in the past few years. The Class of 2018 only included 11 percent international students.
Tamara Macharashvili ’19, an international student from Georgia, explained that she had heard about Princeton through her sister, a current junior, but had never visited before. She noted that the application process was different for her because the grading system and activities did not concur with that of the U.S. educational system.
“I didn’t give much thought to studying in the U.S. until the last couple of years, so most of the activities I was doing came from a natural impulse, and weren’t even intended for the application,” she said of her application experience. “I could by no means determine if they were good enough and if I had a chance.”
Thirty-five students returned from the Bridge Year program and will be joining the Class of 2019, while 35 students from the Class of 2019 chose to participate and will defer until next year, according to Rapelye. Overall, 46 students chose to defer for a year, a significant decrease from the 82 deferrals from the Class of 2018.
Rapelye said the University reached its goal in number of enrolled students, with seven more freshman enrolled this year compared to the 1,312 students enrolled in the freshman Class of 2018.
Students who attended public schools made up 58.6 percent of the class, while 28.6 percent attended independent schools, 12.1 percent attended religiously affiliated schools and 0.7 percent attended military or were home-schooled, Rapelye said.
According to Rapelye, 21 percent of enrolling students indicated that they wanted to study in the BSE program. Women comprised 40.8 percent of the 277 intended BSE students, which is slightly lower than the 42 percent from the Class of 2018.
“We approach each year with a fresh perspective and we are already visiting high schools to meet potential applicants for the Class of 2020,” Rapelye said.