Yale’s Freshman Applications Increase 5.8% to Record 28,870

Freshman applications to Yale University increased by about 5.8 percent to a record high as the school outpaced some of its Ivy League peers.

Yale received 28,870 applications for the 2011-12 year, Jeffrey Brenzel, dean of undergraduate admissions for the school in New Haven, Connecticut, said today in an e-mail.

Applications to Columbia University in New York declined 8.9 percent while the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia saw a 1.7 percent drop. Both schools, which announced results this week, are members of the Ivy League, a group of eight colleges in the northeastern U.S. Applications to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, increased by 1 percent, its slowest pace in seven years, as its dean of admissions decreased marketing by 40 percent.

Brenzel declined to say why Yale’s applications rose. He said the college has refrained from intense marketing and cut Yale’s mailings to prospective students by one-third since 2005.

“Some schools drive application counts higher by heavy solicitation of applications, even if the candidates are highly unlikely to be competitive for admission,” Brenzel said in an e-mail. Yale targets its “promotional efforts to the best- qualified students overall, especially those who might be otherwise underrepresented in our admissions pool but are highly qualified for admission.”

Deans of admission at Columbia and Penn attributed their decreases partly to reinstated early application programs at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey.

Yale admitted 7.4 percent of applicants in 2011 and costs $55,850 for the 2011-12 academic year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Janet Lorin in New York jlorin@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lisa Wolfson at lwolfson@bloomberg.net.

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