Introducing the MIT Class of 2011

By Matt McGann, Associate Director of Admissions and Ben Jones, Communications Manager, Admissions

The admissions staff worked very hard this year to select MIT's most competitive class ever, and we're all very excited to have this incredible group become an official part of our community in August.

There are currently 1076 students enrolled in the class of 2011. As is the norm with every college, we expect a "summer melt" of students who will choose to defer their enrollment for a year or change their mind about enrolling at MIT. Thus, given our historical enrollment and summer melt patterns, we expect to meet our target of enrolling 1070 students for the class of 2011.

MIT received a record number of applications for the second year in a row; our increase of 9% was the highest increase in our peer group. We increased our outreach to under-represented minority students this year, and a redesign of our web site last fall led to increased traffic and a larger on-line community of applicants.

There is an increase in the number of talented minority students coming to MIT this fall, in particular African Americans who comprise 9% of the class. Overall, 22% of the class are under-represented minorities. We attribute this to a number of initiatives, including expanded outreach and an increase in support for bringing minority students to campus.

We are pleased with the number of enrolling women (46% of the class, compared with 45% last year), and the impressive number of new MIT students who are first generation to college. There is good representation from across the US (49 states) and the world (58 countries), along with students from 833 different high schools.

As far as numbers go, the quality of the class is as strong as ever (although we must always remember that the numbers don't tell the whole story; there are many qualities that make our students).

The SAT scores remain strong and the number of "stars" has increased, both academic and non-academic. Academic stars, which comprise 15% of the class (compared with 13% last year), include students who attended one of the three MIT summer programs, RSI, MITES, and WTP, and students with other distinctions, such as finalists at national science fairs, international science olympiad medalists, etc. Non-academic stars, which comprise 14% of the class (compared with 13% last year), are students who were identified by MIT faculty as having special talents in athletics, music, or art. 72% of the class was a leader of an organization and 20% of the class founded an organization. 482 students in the class speak 65 languages (other than English).

Our yield of 69% is the highest yield in MIT's history. We believe that our admitted students have been more engaged with MIT, largely due to the increase in web-based communications and yield activities, and an incredibly successful Campus Preview Weekend. There was a 9% increase in the number of students who attended CPW this year (we flew in more low-income and minority students to CPW), and a record 81% of students who attended CPW this year chose to enroll.

In these students, we will look to DUE's strategic themes to help educate them. Certainly the Class of 2011 is one of the most diverse classes in MIT's history, a trend we hope to continue. These students are very enthusiastic about global opportunities; we hope many of them will retain that excitement and take advantage of everything MIT can offer them in this regard. And these students show all the qualities of future leaders; we hope they will continue on their leadership track while at MIT.

Once again, we expect that our incoming freshman class will be truly amazing. We know that they are well matched with MIT's mission. They are excited for their MIT education, and look forward to changing the world.