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January 30, 2001

Fall 2001 applications soar at UCSC

Campus is tops in the UC system for one-year increases in freshman applications and diversity of prospective freshmen

By Jim Burns

UC Santa Cruz has received nearly 23,000 applications from prospective students for the fall 2001 quarter, the highest number received by the campus in its 37-year history. The total is 16 percent more than the campus received during last year's application period--and more than two times the increase in applications experienced by the University of California system as a whole.

The fall-quarter applications data, reflecting interest from prospective freshmen and transfer students during the traditional November filing period, was released by UC's Office of the President today (January 30, 2001).

While its one-year gain in all applications was second largest in the entire UC system, UCSC experienced the largest percentage increase of any UC campus in applications received from prospective freshmen. The ethnic diversity of those applications to UCSC also showed a greater gain than was experienced at other campuses in the system.

In the UC report, UCSC's application total of 22,923 is 16.0 percent higher than last year's total of 19,768; the one-year UC-wide increase is 7.1 percent.

Applications to UCSC soared for a place in this coming fall's freshman class. The campus received 18,974 applications from prospective freshmen, 3,000 more than for fall 2000. That represents a 19.5 percent gain; the systemwide increase among prospective freshmen was 7.3 percent.

"These numbers make clear that UC Santa Cruz is a campus of choice for an increasing number of college-bound students," said J. Michael Thompson, UCSC's associate vice chancellor for outreach, admissions, and student academic services.

Not only did interest in UCSC among freshman applicants increase at a level that outpaced other UC campuses, that interest spanned California's many ethnic groups. In the following ethnic groups, freshman applications to UCSC increased by the largest percentage in the entire UC system: Latinos, 39.8 percent; African Americans, 36.1 percent; Filipino Americans, 34.1 percent; Chicanos, 28.6 percent; and Asian Americans, 19.1 percent.

Freshman applications to UCSC from "White/Other Students" increased 20.7 percent, second in the UC system; the number of freshman applications from American Indians also increased--by 13.8 percent at UCSC, fourth in the UC system.

Thompson called the ethnicity numbers exceptional, adding: "UC Santa Cruz takes seriously its responsibility to educate and train the people who will be leaders in the state tomorrow, so it is critically important that our campus attract students who are representative of California's diverse citizenry."

The campus's ongoing effort to make prospective students aware of the opportunities available to them at UCSC is a joint endeavor that involves the cooperation of faculty, staff, alumni, and, in particular, current students who are willing to share their experiences with high school seniors, noted Thompson.

One of the most successful outreach programs administered by the Office of Admissions is "Taking UCSC Home," in which current UCSC students visit their old high schools to encourage students to consider attending UCSC. In its fifth year, the program has attracted new students to the campus who credit the university's "ambassadors" with helping them decide to enroll at UCSC, said Thompson.

Despite growing interest in the campus, UCSC remains committed to managing its growth to comply with long-range development plans, said Thompson, noting that UCSC will be selective about the students it chooses to enroll. From the 23,000 applicants, the campus expects to enroll approximately 4,000 new students (freshmen and transfer students) this coming fall, Thompson projected.

The next step in the undergraduate admissions cycle is to notify students of admission, which will take place on March 1. On April 21, the campus holds its annual open house, Banana Slug Spring Fair, which draws several thousand prospective students and their parents to campus. The deadline for students to notify the university of their plans to enroll as undergraduates in the fall is May 1.

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