Strongest Incoming Class Ever Headed to Carolina

Carolina has admitted the most academically qualified class in its history for next fall, based on a comprehensive review of 18,678 freshman applications, resulting in admission offers to 6,671 students.

“We’ve had a great year. This is the strongest class we’ve ever admitted,” said Stephen Farmer, assistant provost and director of admissions.

Just more than 4,600 North Carolina residents were invited to join the freshman class at an admission rate of 57 percent, and 2,057 nonresidents were admitted at a rate of 19 percent. The estimated enrollment for the freshman class is 3,669, with in-state enrollment targeted at 82 percent as mandated by the UNC System Board of Governors.

Farmer said that the University remains committed to building an extremely talented and diverse class and that “this group includes students from every ethnic, socioeconomic and geographic background – including every corner of the state.”

The academic credentials of the admitted freshmen are the strongest ever, with an average SAT-I score of 1336, up 13 points from a year earlier. Admitted freshmen hail from every North Carolina county, each of the nation’s 50 states and 44 other countries. More than 26 percent of the admitted class members indicated that they are African-American, Hispanic, Asian or Native American.

Students were selected by an admissions committee whose holistic, six-month review process includes at least two evaluations of each application, Farmer said.

Carolina seeks to attract the best students throughout North Carolina and beyond while preserving affordability and accessibility for families of all income levels. The University also offers merit and need-based grants.

As a result of a recent decision by the Board of Trustees to devote 25 percent of trademark licensing revenue to merit-based scholarships, the class enrolling in fall 2005 will include 60 more scholarship recipients than last year’s class. All told, the freshman class is expected to have 290 merit-based scholars, including 60 Morehead, 15 Robertson and more than 130 National Merit scholars.

The Carolina Covenant program also enables qualified low-income first-year students to graduate from Carolina debt-free. Through these and other programs, Carolina meets 100 percent of demonstrated financial need of undergraduate students.

Whether the extra regional and national exposure the University has enjoyed in connection with the Tar Heel men’s basketball team’s national championship win on April 4 will provide an added boost for admissions remains unknown.

“People are asking whether our national championship will make a difference,” Farmer said. “Of course, we’re very proud of the team, and everyone here is still walking on cloud nine. Whether that translates into a higher yield this year or more applications next year is everyone’s guess.”

The University also completed the comprehensive review of 3,094 transfer applications and on April 15 invited 1,010 students to join the sophomore and junior class. The anticipated enrollment for the transfer class is 800. The admitted group includes 143 students from North Carolina community colleges and 270 students who are 21 or older.

“Many students choose to transfer here after they’ve had a year or two of college work that prepares them for the rigor of Carolina,” Farmer said. “Our transfer class is an integral part of the Carolina community, and we’re delighted to welcome them.”

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