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Cornell Over-Enrolls Again; Yield at 49 Percent for Class of 2013

Back in March, I wrote that, "this year, with a target of 3,150 students, it would be awfully convenient for the University's budget to enroll 3,250 students."

Well, guess what?

This year’s freshman class is the the largest in recent history. With 3,221 student declaring their intent to enroll, the class is larger than all others in recent history. Last year’s entering freshman class was made up of 3,139 students, according to data released by the department of budget and planning.

Due to budget concerns, the University announced that it would raise its enrollment goal from last year's 3,050 students to 3,150 students, the first increase since Cornell added 50 students to its enrollment benchmark in the fall of 2003. As of now, the Class of 2013 is overenrolled by 70 students.

This group of freshmen is also one of the most diverse classes to ever enroll in the University. Seven percent of entering freshmen are African American, which is up from about 4.5 percent of the Class of 2012, a recruitment statistic that many administrators found disappointing last year. Sixteen percent are Asian American, seven percent are Hispanic American and 43 percent are Caucasian. Eleven percent of students are from outside the United States.

Native New Yorkers made up 28 percent of the entering class, 11 percent came from New England and 21 percent came from the Middle Atlantic. 88 percent of students were in the top 10 percent of their class.

Assuming that each of the 70 'over-enrolled' students paid half tuition, that is additional $1.5MM dollars in badly needed revenue for the University.

Coincidentally, the overall yield rate for the Class of 2013 stands at 49 percent, one percentage point over what I predicted back in March, with a 37 percent regular decision yield.

What is interesting is that I haven't heard any stories yet of over-crowded triples and quads on North Campus. I wonder if declining upperclassmen interest in some of the North Campus program houses has increased Campus Life's abillity to house freshmen.

Matthew Nagowski | Posted on August 24, 2009 (#)

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