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Brown records largest applicant pool in history

Percentage of financial aid applicants, students of color comparable to previous years

By
Senior Staff Writer
Wednesday, March 16, 2016

A total of 32,280 students applied for admission to the University for the Class of 2020, according to data sent to The Herald by Dean of Admission Jim Miller ’73. This is the highest number of applications in the University’s history, Miller wrote in an email to The Herald. The data encompasses applicants from both the early decision and regular decision pools.

The demographics of the applicant pool are “pretty consistent” with previous years, Miller wrote.

Like last year, 41 percent of applicants identify as students of color and 67 percent applied for financial aid.

Additionally, 17 percent of applicants identified as first-generation students.

The University continued to attract students from all 50 states. California accounted for the most applicants, followed by New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Texas.

More international students applied than ever before, with 5,432 applicants from abroad. Most of the international applicants hailed from China, India, Korea, Canada and the United Kingdom.

In this year’s applicant pool, Engineering overtook Biology as the most popular intended concentration. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Business, Entrepreneurship and Organizations, Computer Science and Economics followed in popularity, respectively.

Twenty-eight percent of students indicated they want to concentrate in the physical sciences, which now surpass social sciences as the most popular category of intended concentrations.

Fourteen percent of students selected concentrations in the humanities — up from 12 percent last year. Six percent of applicants were undecided, which is consistent with previous years.

Prospective students frequently cited the open curriculum as a major reason to apply to the University.

“I can balance my passions,” said Catherine Napolitano ’20 of Lincoln, Nebraska, who was accepted early decision into the Program in Liberal Medical Education. While completing pre-med classes as part of the PLME program, “I won’t have to choose between taking science requirements and liberal arts classes,” she added.

Michael Chen of Honolulu, Hawaii, who applied to PLME, said that he applied to Brown so that he can double concentrate “in different areas, which is great because I’m not a very decisive person,” he said.

Applicants also connected with the atmosphere on campus and the reputation of the student body.

Brown students are progressive, open-minded and like “learning for the sake of learning,” said regular decision applicant Ellis Feldman of New York City, who intends to concentrate in Modern Culture and Media or English. In her decision to apply, she considered the University’s academic curriculum and her perception of the student body equally.

Brown has already admitted 669 students from a pool of 3,030 early applications, The Herald previously reported.

Students who applied regular decision will be notified of their admittance status March 31.