Vermont colleges, universities see record number of applications

Published: May. 5, 2022 at 11:25 AM EDT|Updated: May. 5, 2022 at 4:55 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - More students hope to make the Green Mountain State their home, as Vermont colleges and universities in the area report a record number of applications.

As this school year comes to a close at many colleges and universities, all eyes are on the fall. And Burlington’s Champlain College and the University of Vermont say application numbers are skyrocketing.

“We typically bring in incoming classes of about 500 to 600,” said Diane Soboski, the admissions director at Champlain College.

But for Soboski and Champlain College, applications have hit an all-time high.

“This year we did see a record number of applications here at Champlain. So we had over 6,600 applications which is a record in the history of the college,” she said.

The story is the same just up the hill at UVM. According to Jay Jacobs, the vice provost for enrollment management at the university, they set a new record with more than 30,000 applications-- 5,000 more than their previous record high last year.

“Out of the 30,000 applications, about 59% of those were admitted to the institution... Ultimately, the first-year class next year will be just shy of 3,000 students,” Jacobs said.

According to the school, in 2021, 25,500 college hopefuls applied to UVM.

Jacobs says the reason behind the increase can be attributed to a number of factors.

“Our commitment to keep the institution affordable, that’s to President Garimella’s frozen tuition rate for the last four years. We are still seeing some contributions to that application growth from our test-optional admission policy,” he said.

While official stats will not be published until the next few weeks, they say 50% of the applications are coming outside of New England. The applicants include students from 46 states and 15 other countries with 13% identifying as BIPOC.

Soboski says as schools throughout the state work to bounce back from COVID, being available to prospective students during the pandemic helped boost their numbers.

“I think it’s the fact that we were able to get out there. We never closed. We had students on our campus throughout the pandemic. And people got to visit that, they got to tour and see. We’ve been open for over a year, giving tours, where some other colleges may not have been able to do that given policies or some other restrictions on their campus,” Soboski said.

Both schools say they are still in the process of finalizing their incoming numbers but both say they are eager to welcome the class of 2026 to Burlington.

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