For the fifth consecutive year, Penn’s overall yield — the percentage of students who have decided to matriculate to the Class of 2016 — has remained constant.
The yield for both the regular and early decision admits was 63.3 percent this year, similar to the yield rate of 62.7 percent for the Class of 2015.
A greater proportion of the regular decision admits will be matriculating — 46 percent, an increase from last year’s 44 percent.
Dean of Admissions Eric Furda said this increase in regular decision yield did not affect overall yield due to early decision numbers.
“We had a deflationary effect on the overall yield because we accepted fewer College and Nursing students in the early decision round,” he said.
Penn accepted 1,148 students early decision, a decline from the previous year’s 1,192.
The regular decision yield rate for the College of Arts and Sciences and School of Nursing increased by two percentage points, and the regular decision yield rate for the School of Engineering and Applied Science and Wharton School rose by four percentage points, according to Furda.
Furda said the rise in yield among Engineering students may be due to increased visibility of the school’s programs, as well as the popularity of the profession among high-school students.
Overall, while there were “certainly some shifts” in the applicant pool, Furda said the Office of Admissions planned accordingly for any changes in the admissions landscape caused by the reinstatement of early action programs at Harvard and Princeton universities.
The Class of 2016 saw an increase of 7 points in SAT scores, and the Office of Admissions saw increased interest in majors like English, mathematics and architecture, among others.
Top Colleges Educational Consultant Steven Goodman, a 1989 Graduate School of Education graduate, said the numbers are good news for Penn and its community.
“I think the higher-than-60-percent yield is saying to the future classes and to the world that Penn is a school of choice and destination of choice,” he said. “The message is that students take Penn seriously.”
He added that the increased proportion of first-generation college students in the class — 15 percent, up from 10 percent last year — marks a “baby step in the right direction.”
This admissions cycle was the first in which the Office of Admissions actively tracked first-generation applicants through the Common Application.
President of Hernandez College Consulting Michele Hernandez said she was impressed with the high yield as well.
“They did a really good job in the class. The SAT was slightly up and there’s diversity,” she said. “It looks like a great class.”
Across the Ivies, Dartmouth College reported a yield rate of 49.5 percent, similar to last year’s 49.15 percent. Harvard University reported an increase in yield rate to 81 percent from last year’s 77 percent. No other Ivy League institutions have reported yield numbers.
As of Thursday morning, Furda said that Penn has not yet admitted any students off its waitlist.
He added that he is excited to see the diversity of the Class of 2016 in person.
“We’re a very small microcosm, but I think we’re bringing the voices to this class that are going to be important when these students graduate to be around people who aren’t like them,” he said. “I think the Class of 2016 is going to have that kind of representation. That’s the exciting part.”
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