Yale College welcomes the 1,356 members of the Class of 2016 to the University’s Old Campus on Friday, Aug. 24.
The freshman class was selected from a record applicant pool of 28,977. Of the new students, 57% come from public high schools, 10% are international citizens, and 40% are U.S. citizens or permanent residents who identify themselves as students of color. Over 12% of the incoming class will be the first individuals in their family to graduate from a four-year college or university.
Half of the class has qualified for Yale’s generous financial aid program. Yale admits students without regard to their ability to pay for their education, an admissions policy called “need blind,” and meets the full demonstrated financial need of all admitted students. The average Yale scholarship for an eligible freshman this year is $41,230, or about 70% of the total cost of attendance.
A record 42.5% of the incoming class has expressed an interest in majoring in one of Yale’s 26 different science, technology, engineering, and mathematics majors (STEM). As recently as six years ago, only one-third of the entering class intended to major in one of the STEM disciplines.
“More of the strongest students in the world now recognize that Yale undergraduates engage in cutting-edge science and engineering here through research opportunities and mentorships with senior faculty,” notes Jeff Brenzel, dean of undergraduate admissions.
All incoming undergraduates are assigned to one of Yale’s 12 residential colleges. The residential colleges allow students to experience the cohesiveness and intimacy of a small school while still enjoying the cultural and scholarly resources of a large university. Students remain affiliated with their residential college for all four years. Yale makes every effort to represent the diversity of the entire undergraduate community within the residential colleges so that each college is a microcosm of the larger student population. The residential college system offers students a familiar, comfortable living environment; personal interaction with faculty members and administrators; and exciting opportunities for academic and extracurricular exploration. Every residential college has its own master and dean, both of whom are Yale faculty members. The master and dean live in the college with their families and eat their meals with students in the dining hall.
Yale’s expectation is that all undergraduates have at least one international experience during their time at Yale. About one-quarter of the students set out across the globe each year to experience other cultures through study, work, and research abroad. Yale supports all undergraduates in planning their activities abroad and in finding ways to finance these activities. Students receiving financial aid from Yale are eligible for aid to support a summer experience abroad.
University President Richard C. Levin and Yale College Dean Mary Miller will address the freshmen on Saturday, Aug. 25, at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. in Woolsey Hall. Classes in Yale College begin Aug. 29.