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Beth Sorensen
Office of Communications


The 2001—02 admission cycle brought a healthy number of freshman applications for spaces in the Reed College class of 2006. Applications total 1,841, a 6.35 percent increase over last year’s final figure of 1,731. The college is determined to hit the new freshman target of 320 squarely and not repeat last year's over-enrollment experience. To that end Reed is being conservative with admission offers, going out initially with 990–nearly 250 less than last year’s total of 1,235. This represents a step forward in selectivity, as the college is admitting just 53.7 percent of the applicants compared to 71 percent a year ago.

"By all measures the admitted students are an outstanding group of young men and women," said Paul Marthers, Reed's dean of admission. "Their class performance, standardized test scores, essays, and recommendations demonstrate intellectual curiosity and independence of mind. These are students faculty at every college in the country would like to have in their classrooms."

The admitted students’ mean GPA is 3.92 on a 4.0 scale. The mean SAT composite is 1396–715 verbal and 681 math–and the mean ACT is 31. Admitted students also include scores of musicians, researchers, artists, high school leaders, community activists, Eagle Scouts, and varsity athletes.

This year's admitted students are both ethnically and socio-economically diverse. Of those who have clearly identified their ethnic background, nearly 19 percent are students of color: Asian 8 percent, Latino 6 percent, black 2 percent, Native American 0.5 percent, and multiracial 2 percent. A significant number of applicants (21 percent) refused to identify their ethnicity. Nearly 11 percent of the admitted students are the first generation in their families to attend college. For a liberal arts college, the male—female ratio is reasonably balanced –45 percent to 55 percent. There is geographic diversity as well, with California representing just over a quarter of the admits–26 percent, the Northeast following closely at 25 percent, the Northwest at 14 percent, the Mountain/Southwest at 13 percent, the Midwest at 12 percent, and the South at 5 percent. International students make up 5 percent of the admitted class.

For the first time, all admitted students received email notification in addition to a letter. The email contained a direct link to a special web site for admitted students.

This year for the first time Reed chose to offer aid to every admitted international student who demonstrated financial need. International applicants admitted and offered scholarships are from countries such as Bulgaria, China, Costa Rica, Ghana, Ecuador, England, India, Japan, Korea, Pakistan, Romania, and Turkey. The rest of the highly qualified international students the college could not aid have been placed on the waiting list. International students without financial need have been admitted from places such as Australia, Hong Kong, Norway, and Switzerland.

112 students have already enrolled in the class of 2006. Ninety-two students have enrolled through the early decision program, and 20 were deferrals from the prior year. During April receptions and programs for admitted students will be held on campus and in cities around the country including Austin, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, New Haven, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington.

Transfer applications total 170. The students seeking to transfer to Reed are from institutions such as Cal-Berkeley, Boston University, Brown, Dartmouth, Duke, Mount Holyoke, NYU, Occidental, the University of Oregon, St. John’s, Sarah Lawrence, the University of Washington, Wesleyan, and numerous community colleges.

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