This year, not only did applications for admission hit a record 10,656, but Wesleyan saw also a record–setting selectivity of 20 percent, compared to 27 percent just two years ago.
“Last year we reached an all–time high for applications, up by 22 percent, and this year is 6 percent over that,” says Greg Pyke, senior associate dean of admission.
Nancy Hargrave Meislahn, dean of admission and financial aid, is encouraged by the increase in “markets that Wesleyan has identified as high potential and priority for recruitment initiatives.” These include African–American applicants; students from the South, Midwest, (and in particular, increases from Texas, Virginia, and Illinois); and international applicants (with marked increases from India and China). Applications from Texas have tripled in the past three years.
So, why are so many more people applying to Wesleyan? According to a Jan. 29 blog on “Admission and Recognition” by President Roth, it isn’t easy to point to any specific factors with confidence.
“Clearly, we have benefited from positive press thanks to the great work of our faculty, students, staff, and alumni. Our admission and communications departments have been in high gear making sure that we get the word out about what makes Wesleyan an extraordinary institution,” Roth wrote.
“The campus looks great, and investments in our physical plant have had compelling results. We have been emphasizing some of the distinctive aspects of a Wes education, and above all, students and their families have been talking to others about their own experiences.”