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Liberal arts attracts talented, diverse Class of 2016

By Beverly Clark | Emory Report | Aug. 26, 2012

There are 1,371 first-year students currently enrolled for Emory College and about 470 for Oxford College.

Welcome to Emory, Class of 2016! The new first-year students — 1,371 currently enrolled for Emory College and about 470 for Oxford College — hail from five continents and from across all regions of the United States.

"The Emory College Class of 2016 is spectacular — by almost any measure the strongest, most interesting, talented and diverse class we have seen," says Emory College Dean Robin Forman. "Based on the contact we have had with them, they are just as excited as we are. It's going to be a phenomenal fall — followed by a wonderful four years with them."

The Class of 2016's preliminary academic interests represent the depth and breadth of the liberal arts. The most popular areas cited included natural sciences and medicine, along with strong interests in the humanities, social sciences and business, says John Latting, dean of admissions.

Students were enthusiastic in their choice of Emory College, with 46 percent admitted and enrolled through early decision. Oxford also offered early-decision admission for the first time, and 24 percent of the class entered through that option.

"What is primarily driving the increase in students coming to us through early decision is the rise of Emory as a first-choice school for many applicants who find our liberal arts education, diversity and campus life attractive," says Latting.

"We're also seeing an expansion of the Emory footprint with an increased numbers of students coming from the West and New England, and notable increases in international students," Latting says.

The first-year class comes to Emory College from more than 40 states and the District of Columbia.  About 16 percent of the class is international, drawing students from around the world. Most come from China, South Korea and India, with many other countries represented, from Argentina, Guatemala and Jamaica to Senegal, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

The class also maintains Emory's noted racial/ethnic diversity, with:

  • 43 percent Caucasian,
  • 34 percent Asian, Asian American or Pacific Islander,
  • 8 percent African American,
  • 8 percent Latino/Hispanic, and
  • 3 percent multiracial, with
  • 4 percent not reporting.
Latino/Hispanic enrollment has notably increased more than 50 percent this year, says Latting.

Oxford College's first-year students come from 367 high schools in 38 states and 20 nations, and 75 percent came from outside Georgia. Total enrollment is about 900 for Oxford's freshman/sophomore program located on Emory's original, historic campus.

"We saw applications go up significantly this year," says Stephen Bowen, dean of Oxford College. "More students than ever are seeking Oxford's liberal-arts intensive curriculum, small class sizes, opportunities for service, and close-knit community."