Record-high applications for Yale College; high international interest in Yale-NUS

Yale College received 29,790 applications for the Class of 2017 — an all-time high applicant pool for the college, and a 3% increase over the previous year’s final total of 28,977. Yale expects to admit approximately 2,000 students from the applicant pool, about the same total as last year. As a result, Yale’s rate of admission for the class entering this fall is expected to drop a bit below last year’s 7.1%.

“Every year, I am asked about the significance of application counts, and my answer every year is the same: Year to year fluctuations in total application counts have little meaning in themselves,” said Jeffrey Brenzel, dean of undergraduate admissions. “Some schools drive application counts higher by heavy solicitation of applications, even if many candidates are highly unlikely to be competitive for admission. Other schools restrain their marketing efforts to focus on the most competitive students for their institutions.

“At Yale, we take the second approach: targeting our outreach and promotion to the most competitive students from every family background and region, especially those who might be otherwise underrepresented in our admissions pool but are highly qualified,” continued Brenzel. “The scores and grades of our applicants, our admitted students, and the students who accept our offers all reflect our consistent practice over time — they have averaged the highest of any college’s in the nation as our applications have doubled since 2001.”

This year, by checking an optional box on Yale’s Common Application Supplement, applicants to Yale could request that a copy of their application materials be shared with Yale-NUS College, the new liberal arts college in Singapore that Yale is jointly founding with the National University of Singapore. Over 9,200 U.S. citizens and international citizens who applied to Yale this year have chose to use this option, “indicating the extremely strong interest generated by the new school in Asia,” said Brenzel. Many additional students are also applying to Yale-NUS using the new college’s own application.

“We are thrilled that so many top students from around the world have shared their Yale applications with us here at Yale-NUS,” said Jeremiah Quinlan, dean of admissions and financial aid at Yale-NUS. "Even though the college will open its doors for the first time this coming fall of 2013, my colleagues at Yale-NUS have been overwhelmed by the level of interest and quality of students from every continent who are applying to Yale-NUS, both those sharing their Yale applications and those applying only to Yale-NUS.

“Given the high flow of applications we are seeing as word of the new college continues to spread, we have decided to move up our application deadline in Singapore to April 1from April 15, in order to ensure we have sufficient time to send out all decisions by the middle of May,” added Quinlan. Yale-NUS will release its complete application number totals in May after all rounds of admissions for its inaugural cohort are complete.

 Yale College and Yale-NUS operate entirely independent admissions processes, with two different staffs in different locations. No admissions decisions are communicated between the two offices, and if a student should receive an admissions offer from both colleges, he or she will be free to choose to attend either institution.