More aspiring college students want to attend the University of Delaware than ever before.
The school released figures from this year’s application pool showing that more than 33,000 students applied for admission to be part of the class of 2024. That’s a 29% increase over last year’s applications and the first time the figure exceeded 30,000.
The University’s decision to offer applicants an early action option for the first time helped boost applications.
This plan allowed prospective students to apply early, by Nov. 1, with a promise of a response no later than Jan. 31. Just under half of the applicant pool applied under early action. Nearly all of that group received a decision before the winter break, and the rest were notified shortly after.
School officials added that “long-term strategies” have helped UD avoid the impacts of a steady downturn in the population of high school graduates and intensifying competition in the region. “We have been putting long-term strategies in place to build relationships with schools across the country and reach a larger number of students with information on what makes UD special,” said Doug Zander, executive director of admissions.
UD says applicants came from 49 states and 104 countries.
Zander touted UD’s strong undergraduate programs and post-graduate job placement, saying the Newark school has one of the top 10 on-time graduation rates among residential public institutions nationwide — 73% of UD students earn their bachelor’s degree within four years. According to the university, 95% of UD graduates are employed or pursuing further education within six months of earning their bachelor’s degree, compared to a national benchmark of 85.7%.
Applications from Delaware students remained steady at 3,650. This includes 3,500 Delawareans who have applied to a bachelor’s degree program on the University’s main campus in Newark, and 150 who applied for the UD Associate in Arts Program, which offers classes on campuses in Wilmington, Dover and Georgetown.
The University received a record number of applications from nonresident domestic students, which totaled 27,426, an increase of 36% over last fall.
Applications from international students also increased, with 1,970 students from 103 countries applying to UD, up 12% from last year.
UD expects to enroll more than 4,000 first-year students for the 2020-2021 academic year.