Inside Rensselaer
Rensselaer Attracts Exceptional Class of 2011
* Rensselaer Attracts Exceptional Class of 2011
Rensselaer hosted more than 3,000 visitors to campus for the Accepted Student Celebration on April 14. The visitors included more than 1,000 accepted students from 34 states, as well as Canada, South Korea, and Denmark.

The Class of 2011 is expected to be among the most talented and diverse in Rensselaer’s history. Average SAT scores for incoming students are up almost 20 points from the previous year, and more than 65 percent of incoming freshmen ranked in the top 10 percent of their high school class.

A record 10,100 students — up nearly 50 percent over last year and 82 percent in just two years — applied for approximately 1,300 slots. Applications from women increased significantly, as did those from students outside the Northeast and beyond the United States.

James Nondorf, vice president for enrollment and dean of undergraduate and graduate admissions, attributes the increases to Rensselaer’s successful outreach efforts, expanded curriculum, and heightened visibility across the United States and abroad.

“We see a growing interest and excitement about Rensselaer and the programs and experience we offer,” he said. “The result is an incoming class whose increased diversity will bring new perspectives and enrich both the educational and non-educational experience for all of our students.”

Here is a snapshot of the Class of 2011:

  • Approximately 400 women, or nearly one-third of the incoming class, an increase of 12 percent over the previous year.
  • 24 percent from outside the Northeast, up from 17 percent the previous year.
  • A 37 percent increase in international students, who will be coming to Rensselaer from the Bahamas, China, Denmark, Ecuador, India, South Korea, Taiwan, and Thailand.
  • A 32 percent increase in the number of students who intend to enroll in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences.
  • A 20 percent increase in those who plan to pursue careers in the sciences.
  • A 16 percent increase in those who plan to pursue a management degree from the Lally School of Management & Technology.

“We’ve received a lot of positive attention for investments and initiatives outside our traditional strength of engineering, and our admissions results reflect that,” Nondorf said.

He pointed to state-of-the-art new facilities — such as the Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies and soon-to-open Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center — and the $100 million partnership with IBM and New York state to establish the Computational Center for Nanotechnology Innovations.

National rankings and honors also have an impact on incoming students’ decisions. The 2007 Kaplan/Newsweek “How to Get into College Guide” named Rensselaer a “New Ivy,” a status attained by only 25 colleges nationwide. In addition, the Lally School of Management & Technology was one of nine new schools to be included in BusinessWeek’s rankings of undergraduate business programs. The Lally School made its debut at number 40.

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Inside Rensselaer
Volume 1, Number 2, August 2007
©2007 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
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