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Freshman Applications Near All-Time High

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February 8, 2005

Northwestern has received 16,222 applications for admission next fall, the second highest number of undergraduate applicants in the school's history.

The total is the highest since the 16,674 applications for the fall of 1997, the year after the football team played in the Rose Bowl.

The applications for next fall increased 586 from the 15,636 applications a year ago, due in part to more applicants from foreign countries. Applications from international students increased from 5.5 percent of the applicant pool a year ago to 6.6 percent this year.

This is the first time that prospective international students may be eligible for financial aid in the form of need-based scholarships, according to Rebecca Dixon, associate provost of university enrollment.

The University plans to offer limited scholarships on a “need-aware basis” to some foreign students, based on criteria that are now under consideration, Dixon said. The financial aid process for students who are U.S. citizens or permanent U.S. residents will remain need-blind.

The target for the incoming class is 1,925 freshman and 100 transfers. The quality of the freshman applicants is high, reflected by an increase of 11 points in mean SAT scores compared to a year ago.