UCR freshman acceptance rate dip in numbers

Wesley Ng/HIGHLANDER
Wesley Ng/HIGHLANDER

The UC preliminary freshman admissions data for the fall of the 2013-2014 school year was released on the morning of April 18. The acceptance rate for the fall applicants has surpassed previous records with an outstanding 82,850 incoming students. While California residents hold the majority of this total with nearly 60,089 admitted students, a significant decline has been reflected in their acceptance rate in relation to previous years.

“Overall, a record 99,132 Californians applied to UC for freshman admission in the fall and 60,089 of them, or 60.6 percent, were accepted by at least one of the system’s nine undergraduate campuses. That was 1,354 fewer than last year,” stated Larry Gordon in the Los Angeles Times.

Over the years, the UC financial system has been subject to extreme budget cuts and this is one of the leading causes in the decline of admitted California students. According to the Undergraduate Admissions office at the Riverside campus, the admittance rate for California residents dropped from 62 percent in 2012 to 55 percent in 2013.

In an attempt to loosen the financial restraints imposed on these campuses, all nine undergraduate campuses have extended a 21 percent increase in the amount of admission offers to students living outside of California from the previous year. “We saw an increase of 49 percent of our international applicants and a 16 percent increase in out-of-state applicants.  However, we had a higher admit rate to our campus for our California resident population,” said Emily Engelschall, acting Director of Undergraduate Admissions. Traditionally, out-of-state students decline UC admittance more than California residents, and it is believed that out-of-state students will remain in the 10 percentile of UC students.

Minor changes were also reported about the students’ ethnicity. According to preliminary findings by the University of California Office of the President (UCOP), the proportion of Latinos admitted — the largest ethnic group among 2013 applicants — increased from 27.3 percent in 2012 to 27.6 percent in 2013, while the proportion of African Americans dropped slightly from 4.4 percent in 2012 to 4.2 percent in 2013.”

“It breaks my heart to see the numbers dwindling,” stated Martha Mekonen, a member of Afrikan Student Alliance.

“With the continuous outreach programs Chicano Student Programs continues to successfully carry out, I am not surprised with the increase of incoming freshman! Yes, I am happy to see the population grow but I would feel the same joy if it were the Black, Asian, Native American or any under represented population because that’s what makes UCR what it is: the most diverse campus in the state of California,” said Cecilia Luna, a fourth-year sociology and law and society major. She expressed pride for being enrolled in one of the most diverse campuses in the UC system.

“We are pleased with the outstanding academic quality of UCR’s admitted freshman class, with the average GPA of our admitted California residents increasing from 3.71 to 3.76. Additionally, UCR saw an increase of 28 points in the average SAT Reasoning Test score over the Fall 2012 admissions cycle, moving from an average score of 1722 in 2012 to 1750 in 2013,” stated Engelschall.

These rates are all preliminary, and facts are subject to change until each student submits his or her enrollment packages on the first day of May.

“UCR has implemented a waitlist for the third consecutive year. A decision will be made in May as to if there will be available space in UCR’s Fall 2013 class to accommodate students from this pool,” stated Engelschall.

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