College attracts impressive applicant pool
Interdisciplinary in their academic interests, intellectually engaged, international in both experience and outlook-these are just a few of the attributes displayed by the candidates applying to enter Kenyon's Class of 2009. "It's a wonderfully diverse and vibrant group," notes Jennifer Delahunty Britz, dean of admissions and financial aid.
The media coverage that the College received around Election Day last fall seems to have caught the attention of students who are politically aware, Britz says. "We are surprised by the number of students who mention in their applications and interviews that they heard about Kenyon during the election."
Not only is the class one of the most interesting to cross admissions officers' desks, it is also the largest and most academically able. Despite a two-week earlier application deadline, 2.5 percent more students applied to Kenyon this year, continuing a five-year trend of increases. (The College has experienced an increase in applications of more than 90 percent during the past five years.) The admissions staff will evaluate nearly 3,900 applications by April 1 for the 435 spots in the first-year class.
Among the most positive developments in the admissions picture, according to Britz, are that applications from students of color increased by 11 percent. The percentage of students of color in Kenyon's applicant pool has increased steadily over the past five years, from 8.4 percent in 2001 to 13.9 percent in 2005.
Kenyon also saw significant growth in Early Decision applications, with an increase of 14 percent over last year. The number of applicants using the Early Decision option has more than doubled over the last five years. Students admitted from the Early Decision pool include residents from across the country, including Alaska and Wyoming. Also admitted from the Early Decision pool was the first recipient of Kenyon's Presidential Book Award, who hails from Philadelphia. "Clearly, Kenyon is more students' first choice," Britz says.
The academic qualifications of this year's applicants have reached a new high. Mean combined SAT scores rose 23 points this year, registering a 50-point rise over the past five years. The percentage of students ranked in the top 10 percent of their class has increased steadily over five years, with 55.4 percent of the current pool having that status.
Applicants will hear from the Kenyon admissions office by April 1, 2005, and will be invited to campus during April for special admitted-student visit programs.