furda

Photo from the Office of Admissions

On Mar. 30 colleges highlighted their incoming classes through press releases that offered a glimpse into the Class of 2021.

On Mar. 30, tens of thousands of applicants anxiously opened their Ivy League admissions decisions. But colleges also had an objective that day — highlight their incoming classes through press releases that offered a glimpse into the Class of 2021.

The announcements shared a baseline of statistics — the number of admitted students, the total size of the applicant pool and the target freshman class size. They also included metrics detailing the geographic and racial makeup of their admitted students.

Cornell reported the highest number of U.S. admits who identify as students of color — 52.5 percent — with Dartmouth and Harvard trailing by one percentage point. Cornell also surpassed the other Ivy League schools in the number of countries represented — 96 — followed closely by the 94 countries Penn’s Class of 2021 call home. Fifteen percent of Dartmouth and Harvard admitted students will be the first in their families to attend college, the highest among the Ivy League universities that reported this figure.

Each press release contained at least one quote from the university’s dean of admissions, praising the incoming class for its talent and diversity.

“As we got to know the applicants this year, we were truly humbled,” Dean of Admissions Eric Furda said in Penn’s announcement. “The breadth of their academic achievement was exciting, as was the honesty with which they communicated their own strengths and experiences. Students shared their desire to create positive change in their communities, referencing Penn’s commitment to civic engagement. We also saw incredible passion for the arts and humanities.”

Though the press releases contained a similar set of statistics, they differed in the amount of detail they disclosed. Brown, Dartmouth and Harvard, for example, specified the most popular concentrations of their admitted students.

Brown also broke down the number of applications and acceptance rates to its specialized academic programs — the Brown-RISD Dual-Degree Program and Program in Liberal Medical Education — unlike Penn, which did not specify the number of admits by school or dual-degree program.

Penn’s press release distinguishes itself from other announcements in that the University touted the 225 admitted students who are members of community-based organizations, such as Chicago Scholars, College Track and Say Yes to Education.

Dartmouth incorporated its admitted students’ academic prowess into its announcement, highlighting the record-high 547 admitted students who currently stand as the valedictorian or salutatorian in their high schools. It also listed the mean SAT and ACT scores — 1495 and 33, respectively — of its incoming class.

While the target class sizes of most Ivy League universities remained stagnant, Yale announced that the projected enrollment of its Class of 2021 will increase by 15 percent, from 1373 to 1550 students, spurred by the opening of two new residential colleges this fall.

“This expansion touches on every aspect of learning, including teaching, facilities, and financial aid,” Dean of Yale College Jonathan Holloway said in the school’s press release. “It also provides a historic opportunity to engage the community in asking what it means to receive an education from Yale.”

All comments eligible for publication in Daily Pennsylvanian, Inc. publications.