Georgetown’s admissions yield for the Class of 2021 jumped to 49 percent this year, following a record low in the university’s acceptance rate and an all-time high in applications received.
The university’s admissions yield refers to the number of accepted students who submit an enrollment deposit and plan to attend Georgetown in the fall. This year’s rate is a two-percent increase from last year’s 47 percent.
The Office of Undergraduate Admissions’ target enrollment for the entire Class of 2021 increased this year for the first time in seven years to 1,600, up 20 spots from last year. Out of the 3,310 students offered admission for the Class of 2020, 1,633 enrolled, according to Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Charles Deacon (CAS ’64, GRD ’69).
Deacon said the increase in the yield rate is a positive sign for the university, given the record number of applications Georgetown received this year.
With 1,633 students already enrolled, Deacon projects that around 40 students will be accepted from the waiting list. Currently, about 75 of 100 students offered a spot on a wait list remain. All students will receive a final answer by the end of June.
“We have already made some activity on the waiting list,” Deacon said. “We have admitted 25 people from the waiting list. Last year at this time, it was 80. So therefore, one of the results of having a better yield is having few spaces left for the waiting list.”
The admissions office received 21,459 regular decision applicants to the Class of 2021, up 7.3 percent from the 19,997 applicants Georgetown received in 2016. Georgetown later accepted a record-low 15.4 percent of applicants, an overall 3,310 students.
Deacon said the university offered enrollment to 1,675 students, anticipating about 75 admitted students to defer or withdraw their place because of a gap year, illness or financial constraints.
The incoming class represents every state except North Dakota and a record 172 black students, up 30 from last year. The number of Asian students and Hispanic students also increased from 206 to 227 and 169 to 183, respectively.
The incoming class’ average SAT scores increased to 1411, up eight points from last year, representing a highly accomplished incoming class.
“Considering the fact that the pool went up and the class being enrolled is 1411 in SAT versus 1403 — that’s eight points higher — it’s a stronger group, but our yield was higher,” Deacon said in an interview with The Hoya. “So that is really good, and the result is very few waitlist admits.”
Deacon also reported high yield rates in students admitted to the Community Scholars Program, a five-week academic summer program for first-generation college students, and the Georgetown Scholarship Program, a university program that provides financial support for over 625 undergraduates, many of whom are first-generation students, through access to resources and support networks.
The CSP reported a 75 percent yield, with 15 more students planning to enroll than expected, while 67 percent of students admitted to GSP and offered the program’s 1789 Scholarship, which offsets the cost of attendance usually covered by a student loan, plan to enroll.
“I don’t know if the word is out that Georgetown has a great program, but that’s the area that we did really well in,” Deacon said.
The number of foreign nationals enrolling in fall 2017 decreased slightly to 125 from last year’s 127.
Deacon said this small drop raises flags about future changes in international students considering Georgetown for higher education.
“The only number that didn’t tick up was the number of foreign nationals which is an interesting story — 125 versus 127. It didn’t go way down, but it didn’t go up,” Deacon said. “There’s been this issue about whether the climate in the country is going to impact at all the number of foreign nationals who want to come here. That number is interesting.”
Deacon said international student enrollment and applications have traditionally been driven by residents of China as a result of strong economic growth and interest in U.S. education, especially during the time span between 2004 and 2014 in which Georgetown saw a significant jump in international applications. Still, as Chinese interest in Georgetown slows, Deacon said the admissions office is looking to other Asian countries to attract.
“The large jump from 2004 to 2014 was largely influenced by China, and Asia in general. The economy in China is contracting; the growth there is probably peaking,” Deacon said. “Next is India, so we’re spending more time travelling to India. That population is particularly attuned to high-tech areas, and since we don’t have engineering, that’s probably going to limit how big a jump that will be for us.”
The total size of the student body will not change and remains tied to the 2010 Campus Plan’s 6,675 undergraduate student enrollment cap, meaning the admissions office shifted to accepting more freshmen than transfer students this cycle to fill the additional 20 seats in the Class of 2021. This increase reduced the number of transfer students accepted this year from 170 to 150 admits.
The undergraduate schools reported steady yields, with the McDonough School of Business recording the highest rate of 54 percent. The School of Foreign Service reported a 51 percent yield, the School of Nursing and Health Studies recorded a 49 percent yield and Georgetown College yielded 45 percent of its applicants.
Deacon said the MSB’s yield rate has leveled, mirroring the similar trend the MSB observed over the past two years in steady applicant numbers.
He said the lack of substantial growth in yield or applications for the MSB could reflect a shift in applicants’ interest for the humanities and social sciences, as Georgetown College experienced a bump in applicants this cycle, and a stabilizing job market and improving national economic environment.
“The pressure students were facing after the financial crisis was going into a program where they could get jobs afterward,” Deacon said. “It seems that that may be reversing a little bit. People see there is more uncertainty than there used to be. So committing to something fully as opposed to being just generally well-educated is something people are beginning to think about.”