1373 Acceptances Sent To the Brightest Class In History of Harvard
The class of '72 officially "is." At 12:01 a.m. Saturday morning, 1373 letters of acceptance were postmarked at the South Station Postal Annex and sent on their way to the members of next year's freshman class.
Admissions officials expect about 1165 of those admitted to accept by the May 1 deadline. The rest of the 1200 positions in the class will then be filled with candidates from a waiting list of 273.
The class was created by the nearly two dozen members of the Admissions Committee, who met up to 12 hours daily from March 13 until last Sunday and "exhausted 1000 coffee cups," according to one worn-looking official.
A precise breakdown of the new class by test scores, secondary schools, and geographical distribution has not yet been made. But in "overall terms," one official said, the class of '72 is the brightest yet at Harvard. "There are more 800's than ever before."
The class includes boys from every state in the country and from a yet undetermined number of foreign countries.
There will probably be a greater number of black students in the class than ever before, although the exact number is not yet known. One official said he would be "disappointed and surprised" if the number of blacks in the class of '72 did not exceed the approximately 40 in this year's freshman class.
An article in the New York Times yesterday reported an Ivy league trend of increasing applications and acceptances of black applicants.
Scholarships totaling approximately $950,000 have been awarded to 580 of the 4200 applicants for financial aid. Eighty-seven per cent of those--about 500--are expected to accept the aid.
The increase in freshman scholarships--from 475 worth under $800,000 last year--was authorized to compensate for, among other things, an expected reduction in National Merit Scholarships awarded this year.
But L. Fred Jewett '57, director of Freshman Scholarships, said that there are more, rather than fewer Merit Scholarship winners in the Class of '72 than in the last two years' freshman classes. There were 110 Merit Scholars admitted in both the Class of '71 and the Class of '70.
The admissions office received a record total of 7650 applications this year, David K. Smith '58, director of Admissions, said Friday. Last year, 7150 applications were received, and Harvard accepted a total of 1360.