For the first time in seven years, no students will be admitted off the waitlist for the incoming freshman class. By last Tuesday, 1,130 prospective students, or 70 percent of admitted students, confirmed their enrollment at MIT for the coming fall — MIT’s highest yield ever.
According to Dean of Admissions Stuart Schmill ’86, 100 fewer students were admitted this year relative to last year, to create the same size class as the 2015s. The admissions office chose to lessen the number of students admitted because early admissions was reinstated at Harvard and Princeton last year; since applicants who were interested in those schools might have already been admitted during the early admissions cycle, those applying to MIT were more likely to say yes.
“Students who applied early to one of those schools and were admitted may not have applied to us,” Schmill wrote in an email to The Tech, “where in the past they might have [applied to MIT].” To estimate just how many students to accept — such that the class size would work out right — admissions checked yield numbers from when Harvard and Princeton previously had early admission programs.
“[We] thought the yield would go up about 2 percentage points — not the 4 points it actually went up,” Schmill said.
The admissions office was “fully expecting” to take students from the waitlist this year and were “disappointed not to be able to offer admission to some really excellent students who were on the waitlist.” These students have been informed that the class is full.
“Rather than have them wait, we wanted to tell them as soon as possible,” Schmill explained.
Schmill credits the high yield of the class of 2016 to a spectacular CPW.
“CPW was outstanding because of the welcoming spirit of the entire campus,” he said, “We had a higher percentage of our admitted students attend than ever before, and they gave us great reviews on their follow up surveys.”
The class of 2016 boasts a higher percentage of women (46 percent) and underrepresented minorities (24 percent) than any other class, while 13 percent are first generation students. The SAT scores were the “highest ever” according to Schmill, with a math mean/median of 764/780 and verbal mean/median of 716/730.
The holistic (“arguably more important”) measures of the class, Schmill said, are “still as strong as ever.”
In addition, 25 transfer students, mostly sophomores, have accepted their offer of admission at MIT.