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Harvard University Class of 2007

2007admitrateEARLY ACTION

Of the record 7,620 students who applied Early Action, Harvard accepted just 1,150 for an admissions rate of just 15.1 percent. Last fall, the College accepted almost 20 percent of 6,126 applications.

As a result of the high number of applications, a record number of top-caliber students seeking admission received deferrals.

This fall marked the first year that national guidelines allowed students to apply to Early Action schools such as Harvard at the same time as binding Early Decision schools like the University of Pennsylvania. That policy change, which led many to predict Harvard would have access to top students whose Early Decision applications would previously have prevented them from applying to the College, may have factored into the spike in applications.

Harvard has always told its alum interviewers not to ask students where else they are applying, but this year the admissions office sent out special correspondence reiterating how "awkward" this question could be for students who had filed an Early Decision application at another college.

The demographics of students accepted early to the class of 2007 changed little from the last year. There were slight increases in the percentages of Latinos, international students and students from New England and the Pacific states who were accepted.


The College announced on April 3rd that the Class of 2007 faced a record-low admissions rate of 9.8 percent?and that a record-high percent of the 2,056 applicants admitted to the Class of 2007 are black.

10.2 percent of admitted students are black, up from 8.9 percent last year. The news came a mere day after the Supreme Court heard a landmark case that could rule admissions systems like Harvard's - which takes race into account as one factor in decisions - unconstitutional.

It also comes after a year in which some worried that a high-profile standoff between University President Lawrence H. Summers and Fletcher University Professor Cornel West would taint Harvard's image among prospective black students.

A total of 20,918 students applied this year, an increase of 6.7 percent from last year's 19,609.

Asian-Americans comprised 16.2 percent of admitted students. Mexican-Americans comprised 3.6 percent, Puerto Ricans comprised 1.5 percent and Hispanic-Americans from other countries in Latin American and South America comprised 3.7 percent. American Indians comprised 1 percent of the admitted pool.

Women comprised slightly more than 48 percent of admitted applicants. The Admissions Office received an unprecedented 20,986 applications this year, surpassing last year's record number of 19,605 and making this the twelfth year out of the past thirteen that the number of applications to the College has risen.

Harvard's revised admissions policy, which allows consideration of applicants who simultaneously applied to binding Early Decision programs at other schools, may have played a role in this year's increase.

Another potential reason for the rise is the increase in financial aid that Harvard was able to provide to students. It was the largest single item in Harvard's last capital campaign, which has made it possible for the Financial Aid office to have a substantial increase in the generosity of the financial aid program. The campaign, which concluded in 2001, made it possible for Harvard to add an average of $4,000 to all student aid packages.

A "record number" of 247 deferred Early Action applicants out of approximately 6,000 were offered admission.

The pool of admitted students is slightly more international than last year, with 15.1 percent being classified as foreign citizens, U.S. dual citizens or U.S. permanent residents, up from 14.2 percent last year.

Out of all the applicants, 78 percent of students elected to receive e-mail notification of admissions decisions, the second year this service was offered. E-mails were sent out yesterday between 5 and 9 p.m. The admissions office decided to send the e-mails later in the day to accommodate complaints from high schools whose students constantly checked e-mail during the school day last year, when the e-mails were sent in the mid-afternoon.