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Northeastern receives record number of applications

Northeastern University has received 44,189 applications for the Fall 2012 freshman class, a new record for the university.

Students applying for the 2,800 seats in next year’s freshman class also exemplify unprecedented levels of academic achievement. The number of applicants with SAT scores above 1400 has doubled since five years ago. More than a quarter of the applicant pool has a high school GPA of 4.0 or higher.

A recent Northeastern survey of college-bound high-school students underscored the desirability of Northeastern’s educational model. Students ranked “the combination of rigorous coursework with real-world research and work experience” as the most desired attribute of a college education. They also expressed a strong interest in global experiential learning and the opportunity to collaborate with faculty members on research.

“Northeastern provides students with a unique combination of global opportunities, access to world-class research and an ecosystem of entrepreneurship — all anchored in our signature co-op program,” said President Joseph E. Aoun. “The combination gives our students what I call ‘The Northeastern Advantage.’ It is both a powerful way to learn and the best preparation for life.”

The new applicant pool is more diverse than ever before. Nearly 14 percent of the 44,189 applicants are international students, representing 148 countries. Thirty percent of the applicants are students of color. They also represent a domestic geographic expansion from previous years, including a significant increase of applicants from outside New England and the Mid-Atlantic.

In addition to the outstanding quality and quantity of its applicants, Northeastern’s momentum is reflected by other key metrics. Over the past five years, external research awards have increased by 95 percent. Over the same period, philanthropic support has doubled, and the 2010–2011 academic year was the university’s best fundraising year to date.