USC acceptance rate reaches all-time low

USC mailed out decision letters on Tuesday for students accepted into the graduating class of 2019. Of the 51,800 students who applied, 9,050 were granted admission.

USC boasts its lowest acceptance rate in history at 17.5 percent, down from last year’s 17.8 percent.

Timothy Brunold, dean of undergraduate admission, said the type of students that were offered a place in the university were exemplary candidates.

“The students who have just been invited to join the Trojan Family have it all: fantastic academic preparation, impressive patterns of involvement and leadership, incredible diversity — in every sense of the word — sincere academic curiosity and an eager willingness to tackle the world’s toughest problems,” he said.

Most of the admitted students were part of the top 10 percent of their graduating class. Their average unweighted GPA was 3.83 on a four-point scale, and they scored above the 95th percentile in their SATs.

Half of the students who have been accepted took more than eight Advanced Placement courses during their high school career.

The admitted students also represent a diverse set of ethnic backgrounds.

While 44 percent of the admitted freshmen are from California, 42 percent represent 49 states and U.S. territories. Fourteen percent of the students come from 77 foreign countries, with the most represented countries being China, India, South Korea, Canada and Singapore.

Twenty-three percent of the students are also from underrepresented minority populations. Eight percent are black, 13 percent are Latino and 2 percent are Native American/Pacific Islander, making USC one of the country’s private research universities that enrolls the most underrepresented minorities.

Some of the admitted students will form part of the inaugural class of the USC Glorya Kauffman School of Dance. Three-hundred and fifty students applied, and only 20 will pursue their bachelor of fine arts in the new school.

The class of 2019 will also be inaugurating its new music production program under the Thorton School. Under this program, students will be able to pursue a bachelor of music.

One of the students accepted, Alli Loynd, hopes to major in biological sciences and French. While she was in high school, she created a district-wide program that brought high school students to her districts’ elementary schools to teach English as a second language.

“I saw a lot of ESL students feeling lost and ignored, so I am really proud that I have potentially made some of these kids’ lives easier by helping them with their English, but most importantly, showing that people care about them,” Loynd said.

Caleb Collins, a senior in high school, is one of 10 students who were admitted into the program. He said that he always knew he wanted to work in the music industry.

“I always knew that Thornton was a top program — one of the best in the country — so I decided to apply. I have listened to music since before I could talk and music is all I want to do,” he said.

Collins attended Grammy camp for a jazz session and was a winner of a YoungArts award, an award that recognizes young artists in literary, design and performing arts.

Students who have not yet received their admission decision should expect to get their admissions packages within the next few  days. The university will also post decisions online.

Brennan said USC still chooses to send admissions decisions through the mail to emphasize the importance of the students’ accomplishment.

“Admissions decisions are overwhelming and we want our announcements to be a family moment,” Brennan said.

Students will have until May 1 to decide whether they will be attending the university.

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