Undergraduate applications to Harvard University dipped slightly from last year's record high, campus officials said Monday.
A total of 34,295 people applied for admission to the class of 2018, representing a decline of about 2 percent from the 35,023 who applied last year and from the 34,303 and 34,950 in the prior two years, the university said.
“After an early action group that featured remarkable academic and extracurricular excellence and unparalleled ethnic and economic diversity, we are delighted to have a regular application pool that promises more great things for the Class of 2018,” said a statement from William R. Fitzsimmons, dean of admissions and financial aid.
This year 22.7 percent of applicants requested an application-fee waiver, compared with 16.4 percent last year and 12.4 percent three years ago, the university said.
"This suggests even more economic diversity for the incoming class than for previous ones," said a press release from Harvard.
Campus officials said they believe the university's financial aid program has contributed to high application numbers over the past several years.
“Harvard’s revolutionary financial aid program has again played a pivotal role in attracting the nation’s and the world’s most promising students to apply to Harvard," Fitzsimmons said.
Officials said there were some slight differences between the demographics of last year's applicant pool and this year's
“While the gender breakdown is still about 52 percent male, larger percentages of the pool are Asian-American, African-American, Latino, Native Hawaiian, and multiracial, with a smaller percentage of Native Americans," said a statement from Marlyn E. McGrath, director of admissions.
“There were also some geographic shifts, including a 5.8 percent decline in applications from the Midwest, a 5.1 percent decline from New England, and a 3.4 percent decline from international students,” she said, adding that there were slight increases from the South and Mountain States.
Applicants, including those deferred during early action, will be notified about decisions on March 27.