Next Year's Freshmen May Be Brightest, Most
Diverse Ever

By Reid Oslin
Staff Writer

The freshman class that will enter Boston College in September promises to be not only the best and the brightest in the University's history, but the most diverse as well, according to Academic Vice President and Dean of Faculties David R. Burgess.

In an interview last week, Burgess discussed the unprecedented level of interest in BC evident from this year's admission offer figures. The Office of Undergraduate Admission received a record 19,700 applications for the 2,200 slots in the Class of 2003. Acceptances have been sent out and students must reserve a place in the class by May 1.

While the portrait of the new freshman class is still coming into focus, Burgess said there is every indication that the Class of 2003 will be at least as strong academically as those in recent years.

"We are continuing the trend that clearly shows a rise in the quality of students that are applying to Boston College," said Burgess, who added that the increase in the quantity and quality of applicants is a "recognition of the continuing emergence of Boston College as a highly-selective national institution of higher education, and we are just delighted."

The number of AHANA students in next fall's entering class is also likely to rise, Burgess said, noting that 27 percent of all admission offers were made to AHANA students. This translates into an additional 50 admission offers for both African-American and Hispanic students, Burgess said.

"These are some absolutely terrific students from all over the country," Burgess said. "We hope that many of them will choose to come to Boston College."

He pointed to "the mission of our institution" as one of its most distinguishing characteristics. "We expect our students to take part in the outreach programs, the community service projects and internships while they are here," he said. "That is a value that is added to the Boston College education. It makes a big difference."

Burgess said that the increase in quality applicants also mirrors the University's efforts to attract more top-level faculty members.

"We have increased our expectations for students to perform academically," he said. "When you couple that with our mission and service opportunities, it results in developing students who will become leaders."

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