Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Record Acceptance Rate for Class of '13

This year's record-setting admissions numbers:

- 18,130 applications (up 10% from last year)
- 2,184 acceptances (12%)
- 13% increase in total financial aid
- 1,091 men and 1,093 women
- 162 children of alumni
- 310 first-generation college students

See the full press release for more data.


right-wing prof said...

55% of the students will need financial aid. This is a rmarkable number, it means that 45% of the students, almost half, are going to be paying almost $50,000/year cash with no aid. Such a family is rich rich rich.

Anonymous said...

You dont have to be "rich rich rich" to pay the tuition in full. You just have to live very frugally and "save save save" all you can in order to pay it. That's what my parents did. We never took family vacations or had a second home or went out to eat. Think about this: if both parents are police officers in Boston and they earned the average salary, their combined earnings before taxes would top $225,000/year. Over 20 years, they could save enough to put two kids through Dartmouth. Are cops rich rich rich?

childrenarourfuture said...

Not necessarily. A family that is less than "rich rich rich" but has been saving prudently and has had the student take out loans can pay $50,000/year.

Anonymous said...

With housing, board, books, and travel expenses, I assure you it's considerably more than $50K/yr. Tuition alone for this spring is over $14K. Room and board can approach $4K, easily. Books can be well over $500 per quarter (another abomination). Travel is $1K plus or minus. Close to $60K, according to my checkbook.

And, while it used to be true that Dartmouth students could graduate in 11 quarters (a 1 quarter 'discount'), the College has made it more and more difficult to graduate in fewer than 12 quarters: the College provides ever-fewer advanced placement credits, and students in heavily-subscribed majors frequently cannot get into the classes they need to be able to graduate in 11 quarters.

A family which can afford this is hardly rich. Pretty well-off, sure. But Dartmouth's costs have grown much more rapidly than the above-average middle-class family can afford. 55% on financial aid is about a 10% increase over just five years ago.

I am hearing many families tell their kids, that no longer can they attend whatever school accepts them. More and more are making less and less, relative to the increases in Ivy League and other private college costs.

The fall in the stock market simply exacerbates this trend, both in terms of a family's savings, as well as in terms of the College's endowment.

The Trustees have largely refused to grapple with the problem. There's been an awful lot of talk, yes, but nowhere near enough action. Wright's cuts are welcome (yes, I know, SEIU and others say otherwise), but really should have been twice as big, if keeping the cost of a Dartmouth education 'down' is a goal.

I don't see the situation changing. I doubt very much whether my grandchildren (if I'm that lucky) will be able to afford to attend Dartmouth.

Anonymous said...

One answer is to make college three years. That just means less X-Box and facebook time.

Colleges that offer need-blind admission will always be more popular than those that don't. The way they get 45% who don't need financial aid is by screening by zip code.

$225,000 a year means a lot of OT and donuts at construction sites.

anon. 9:34 said...

Dartmouth's priority should be raising costs to whatever the market will bear if doing so permits the college to offer financial aid to those who can't afford the full rate. As long as the education is underpriced, the Trustees should keep raising tuition.

Anonymous said...

9:34. Do you have any goal in your proposal, beyond simple redistribution of wealth?

anon. 9:34 said...

The College should provide the best education possible to those it admits, and to admit the most qualified students possible. Dartmouth should charge what the education is worth in the market unless doing so would cause a desirable admit to go elsewhere.

Isn't that basically what it's doing already? Dartmouth should ignore the people who whine about how college costs nationwide are rising faster than inflation, as if inflation were some kind of moral brake and no service ever fluctuated in price, or was historically underpriced.

Redistributing wealth if engaged in at all, is best left to the state.

Anonymous said...

9:34: I wonder how many places the College would have to sell on ebay to make tuition free for everyone else.

Anonymous said...

If state and federal (income, social security, medicare) taxes are factored into the equation, that base cost of $50k per year really looks more like $70k pre-tax. If a family unit does not qualify for financial aid, then there is a good chance that any tax advantages are phased out as well.

Assume each parent made $75k and therefore would not qualify for financial aid. If work-related benefits could be picked up by the other spouse . . . why work?

You could "use" the system or just have your hard-earned income "spread around."

d11 said...

While I don't necessarily agree with 9.34, I think it's a perfectly reasonable goal for an educational institution to, all other things being equal, prioritizing the lower-income student. If you have two students with equal promise, surely it makes sense to give a financial break to the student whose family can't afford college as much as the other student's family.

Anonymous said...

@anon 3:45: what "system" are you talking about?

This is not the U.S. tax system. Someone who declines to work in order to keep the family in the aid bracket - if that really happens - is not taking "hard-earned income" from anyone.

The decision of how much charity to offer belongs to Dartmouth, and Dartmouth adjusts aid independent of tuition. Nobody who pays full fare is entitled to a discount when the number of aid recipients drops.

If you finished paying full tuition and found out that an aid recipient had transferred and used less aid than he had been allotted, would you demand a check for your "share"? My, what a big sense of entitlement you have.

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