University welcomes 1,185 freshmen, 550 new grad students

Sept. 5, 2001 5:01 p.m.

Princeton University will welcome about 1,185 members of the Class of 2005 when the 2001-2002 academic year officially begins this weekend. Approximately 550 new graduate students are expected to enroll.

Opening Exercises will be held Sunday, Sept. 9 and classes begin Sept. 13.

The new freshman class is about 20 students above the original target of 1,165, as more admitted students than anticipated decided to enroll. An additional 26 students accepted an offer of admission, but have deferred their enrollment to the fall of 2002.

"Given that our trustees announced last winter that our students would no longer be asked to take out loans as part of their financial aid, the difference to be made up entirely by additional grant aid, we anticipated that our yield might increase this year," said Fred Hargadon, dean of admission. "So we made fewer initial offers of admission than last year, figuring we could use our wait list to come up to the precise number if need be."

However, the yield increased from 68 percent to 71 percent, making it impossible to admit anyone from the wait list.

The 614 men and 571 women of the Class of '05 come from 825 secondary schools in 48 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and 39 other countries.

"To those of us in admissions, they are 1,185 individual short stories who, collectively, make up an exceptional group of freshmen," Hargadon said. "These 1,185 individual freshmen, alas, will most likely read about themselves only in tabular form: 46 percent are on scholarship; 31 percent of those who are either U.S. citizens or permanent residents are from one or another minority background; around 9 to 10 percent are international students; and more than 14 percent are sons and daughters of Princeton graduates."

Total undergraduate enrollment at the University this fall is expected to be just over 4,600.

New graduate enrollment is down slightly from last year's record of 573 students, but is in line with the Graduate School's enrollment plan.

John Wilson, dean of the Graduate School, said he is pleased with the caliber of new students. With new funding programs approved by the trustees earlier this year, he expects the University to continue to be very competitive in attracting top-notch students.

"Princeton took two initiatives last spring that position it as exceptionally attractive for students seeking the Ph.D. degree," he said. "First-year fellowships for all entering students in sciences and engineering, and summer stipends for all years of study in humanities and social sciences programs provide very generous support that will affect student decisions both about applying to and attending Princeton."

The incoming students include 540 new degree candidates and 10 non-degree visiting students. The science and engineering departments expect to enroll about 265 new students (48 percent of the total), the humanities and social sciences 160 (29 percent), and the professional schools of architecture and public affairs -- predominantly master's degree students -- 125 (23 percent).

Seventy percent of the new graduate students are enrolled in Ph.D. programs; the rest are in master's programs. The Graduate School is bringing in its first class of 26 students pursuing a master of finance degree, a two-year program offered through the Bendheim Center for Finance.

In the entering group of graduate students, 44 percent are international students, 36 percent are women, 4 percent are African American, 5 percent are Hispanic and 24 percent are Asian-American.

Overall, the Graduate School anticipates registering a total of 1,965 graduate students for the 2001-02 academic year. In keeping with other top-ranked research institutions, Princeton provides full financial assistance to virtually all research doctoral candidates.

Contact: Marilyn Marks (609) 258-3601