This story originally appeared in UCLA Today, a discontinued publication.

Applications for fall 2011 hit record level at UCLA

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UCLA received the largest number of applications for fall 2011 among all UC campuses, according to preliminary data released by UC Friday (Jan. 14). The number of aspiring freshmen and transfer students applying to enroll at UCLA hit a record 81,235 applicants, a 6.4 percent increase from last year.
 
Overall throughout the system, fall 2011 undergraduate applications to UC rose for the seventh straight year,  The university received 142,235 submissions from prospective students, an increase of 6.1 percent over last year. All campuses saw record numbers in freshman applications this year. The greatest increases were at San Diego (11.2 percent), Merced (8.9 percent) and Riverside (8.5 percent).
 
Students.walkThe number of applications (61,498) for a spot in UCLA’s freshman class rose 6.8 percent from the previous year while the number of transfer applications (19,737) increased 5.3 percent from 2010.
 
Continuing a trend of recent years, some UC campuses experienced double-digit growth in transfer applications. The increases ranged from 31.2 percent at Riverside to 15.1 percent at Irvine.
 
The data also reflect an increase systemwide in the number of applicants from many ethnic groups. Freshman applications from Chicano/Latino applicants rose 18 percent, while Asian freshman applicants grew by 5 percent. Applications from African American and white students also grew slightly, 2.3 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively.
 
The transfer applicant pool for all UC campuses showed increases of 26.4 percent for Chicano/Latinos, 14.7 percent for Asians and 12.3 percent for whites.
 
At UCLA, the total number of freshman applicants from underrepresented ethnic groups increased 12 percent from 13,988 the previous year to 15,736. While the number of Chicano/Latino freshman applicants rose by 1,828 from the previous year, the number of freshman applications from African Americans, American Indians and Pacific Islanders slipped slightly from 2010.
 
The number of freshman applications from California residents increased by 3.6 percent overall in UC. UCLA experienced a 3.2 percent rise. "Since we are in a period where the number of projected high school graduates is flat, this increase suggests more students are meeting the university's admissions requirements," UC Director of Admissions Susan Wilbur said.
 
More applications from nonresident students to UC campuses were submitted as well, with an increase of 10.7 percent from out-of-state and 22.5 percent from international freshman applicants. For the freshman class, UCLA received more out-of-state applications (a 15 percent increase) and more international applications (a 35 percent increase), but the number of transfer applications from both out-of-state and international students dipped.  
 
Wilbur said that the university intends to offer a space to every eligible California applicant, but "increasing student demand coupled with inadequate state funding for enrollment growth are making it increasingly difficult for UC to meet its historic commitment under the Master Plan." UC now enrolls 11,000 more California-resident students than the state provides funding for.
 
She said the campuses will use waitlists for a second year, noting that the strategy helped campuses enroll the maximum number of new students last year. "We were able to process our waiting list quickly, and all applicants knew where they stood before the end of May," Wilbur said.
 
Wilbur also stressed the university's commitment to making sure students at every income level are able to attend UC.
 
"Despite recent fee increases, we expect to enroll large numbers of low-income students, in part because we return 33 percent of any new fee revenue back into financial aid," she said. The Blue and Gold Opportunity Program ensures that financially needy California students whose family income is below $80,000 will pay no systemwide fees. In addition, the university will provide grants to cover the recent tuition increase for one year for financially needy California undergraduates with household incomes of less than $120,000.
 
Detailed data tables on UC's fall 2011 term applications are available online.
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