The Ivy Coach Daily

October 12, 2020

Gap Years for UPenn Students

Unsurprisingly, the number of students who opted for gap years at UPenn is up this year.

Curious how many University of Pennsylvania students admitted to the Class of 2024 opted to go the gap year route this year? Wonder no more! Approximately 200 students who earned admission this past admissions cycle chose to defer their enrollment by a year, opting instead to be members of the UPenn Class of 2025. This figure is up about 300% from the 50 students who typically take gap years — the vast majority of whom do so prior to beginning their college experience. So what impact will this significant increase in the number of students who opted for gap years have on this next admissions cycle?

UPenn’s Dean Makes Assertion About This Next Admissions Cycle

As Komal Patel reports for The Daily Pennsylvanian in a piece entitled “COVID-19 pandemic leads to approx. 300% increase in gap years for incoming Penn students,” “In an emailed statement to The Daily Pennsylvanian, Furda said that the Office of Undergraduate Admissions does not expect that this increase in gap years will have a ’significant impact on the selectivity or opportunity’ during the upcoming admission cycle. He added that the ’the size of the applicant pool and anticipated yield’ will have a much more significant impact on the admissions cycle.”

150 Seats in UPenn’s Class of 2025 Are Already Filled

Loyal readers of our college admissions blog know that Dean Furda has an excellent habit of telling it like it is when it comes to the highly selective college admissions process. And we don’t disagree with his assessment that the size of the upcoming applicant pool coupled with the anticipated yield will be the most significant determinants of the school’s selectivity this coming year. But let’s not ignore the facts: 200 students admitted to the Class of 2024 will be filling seats in the Class of 2025. That’s 150 more seats that will be filled than during a typical year. In a typical year, UPenn enrolls about 2,400 students in the first-year class. Look for that number to be smaller this year so as to accommodate the overflow from the Class of 2024. After all, it’s not like UPenn had the time to build more dorms to welcome a significantly bigger incoming class. This pandemic didn’t give UPenn — or any of us — any warning.

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