Admits to Class of '99 Set Diversity Records

The prospective class of 1999 contains a record number of Native Americans, Hispanic Americans, Puerto Ricans and women, according to figures released by the Harvard Admissions Office yesterday.

The number of Black candidates admitted, 215, was only two students short of the record number admitted for the class of 1997.

Dean of Admissions William R. Fitzsimmons '67 said that the admissions office has worked hard to recruit the record-breaking numbers of minority students.

"We've added a second search for people from minority backgrounds targeted [at] people who haven't applied yet but look promising," Fitzsimmons said yesterday. "We have alumni around the country to help us recruit in the local areas."

Undergraduate minority students who help to make calls and visits are among the "most effective" recruiters, Fitzsimmons said.


According to the admissions office, 25 Native American students were admitted this year, breaking last year's record of 19. Hispanic American admits numbered 78 students, up from 66. Forty Puerto Rican students were invited to join the class of 1999,2 more than in 1998.

Women make up 46.7 percent of the prospective class of 1999, exceeding lastyear's record of 45.5 percent.

The number of Asian Americans admitted droppedto 364, 31 students short of last year's recordnumber.

The size of this year's candidate pool was arecord-smashing 17,847, more than 2,500 moreapplicants than last year--making this the mostcompetitive year ever for admission to theCollege. Fewer than 12 percent of applicants wereadmitted.

Applicants who were valedictorians and studentswho scored perfectly on the Math II Achievementtest exceeded the number of open spots.

More than half of the applicant pool scoredover 700 on the math portion of the SAT, and morethan 6,000 applicants had a combined SAT score1,400 or more