Class of 2013 Yield Falls Despite Huge Increase in Number of Applications

Despite a record number of applicants and a record low admit rate, MIT’s yield fell for the class of 2013: 64 percent of students accepted MIT’s offer of admission, down from 66 percent for the class of 2012 and from a record high of 69 percent for the class of 2011. The incoming class has 1,071 students, 23 more than last year’s.

Dean of Admissions Stuart Schmill ’86 said more peer institutions were competing over the same students this year.

“What we found was that more students were admitted to MIT and to places like Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Stanford, so there were more students with very good choices,” Schmill said. “These other schools are really recognizing the importance of enrolling strong scientists and engineers.”

Yields at other schools mostly stayed the same or increased. Harvard’s yield increased to 78.5 percent from 77.6 percent; Princeton’s yield increased to 59.7 percent from 58.6 percent, while Stanford’s and Yale’s yields remained the same at 70 percent and 68.7 percent, respectively.

Seventy-eight students were accepted off the waitlist, which contained 455 students, down from 741 students last year. Last year, the waitlist was much larger because many schools were ending their early decision programs, creating uncertainty among other schools. Thirty-five students were admitted from the waitlist last year.

MIT received a record 15,661 applications this year, a 17 percent increase from last year. Part of the increase came from MIT’s new partnership with QuestBridge, a non-profit organization that recruited 800 low-income applicants for MIT. “Our partnership with QuestBridge was no doubt one of the reasons why our applications increased, which we plan to continue,” Schmill said.

Schmill also blames the troubled economy for prompting students to send out more applications in the hopes of winning financial aid. “Particularly as the economy goes south, students want to compare financial aid packages,” Schmill said.

The summer melt — students who enrolled in May but did not matriculate — was 15 students. Schmill said that number was comparable to previous years’.

The demographics of the incoming class did not change much this year. This year’s class is slightly more male: 55 percent are male, and 45 percent are female. In the past two years, the classes have been 54 percent male and 46 percent female. Of the 92 percent of students admitted as U.S. citizens, Caucasians represent 36 percent of incoming freshmen, Asian Americans 26 percent, African Americans 9 percent, Mexican Americans 8 percent, other Hispanic groups 5 percent, Puerto Ricans 2 percent, and Native Americans 1 percent. Five percent identified themselves as “other” or listed no response. Eight percent were international citizens.

The West Coast accounts for 20 percent of the incoming class, with California being the most common state for the freshmen to call home. The Midwest claims 13 percent of incoming students, 17 percent are from the Southeast and Puerto Rico, 9 percent from the South and Southwest, 16 percent from the Mid-Atlantic, 13 percent from the New England area, and 11 percent from abroad. Students from abroad represent 58 countries.

Seventy percent of incoming freshmen come from public schools, with private schools contributing 15 percent, religious schools 7 percent, foreign schools 6 percent, and home schools 1 percent. Eight hundred and fifty six high schools in total are represented.

“Honestly, it’s a fabulous class,” Schmill said.