University of Richmond Attracts Diverse Incoming Class

June 22, 2021

UNIVERSITY OF RICHMOND ─ In a year when few high school students were visiting college campuses, including the University of Richmond, UR recorded its largest applicant pool in its history and its second-largest number of deposits.

Nearly 14,000 students applied for admission, and more than 900 have deposited, the highest number since 2009. The record applicants aren’t completely surprising.

“Because many schools, including UR went test optional, students considered schools they might not have in the past,” said Stephanie Dupaul, vice president for Enrollment Management. “What many applicants might not realize, or might not believe to be true, is that UR has a holistic admission process and that test scores had always been only one part of an applicant’s consideration.”

Also contributing to the record-breaking pool is that UR offered in-person instruction for the entire academic year of 2020-21. “That was really well received with parents, counselors, and students,” Dupaul said. “We delivered an in-person student experience. We stood out for our ability to provide what students value — personal relationships with faculty, staff, and other students. That’s what makes us special.”

Admission also has worked to expand the pool of candidates with more first-generation students and a greater geographical reach. Part of the strategy includes reaching out to students when they are high school sophomores. “It’s part of a long-range strategy to build awareness over time, particularly in new markets,” she said.

Dupaul said the class is the second most diverse class in the school’s history and has the highest average GPA. The class is over 29% domestic students of color and also has a strong international cohort.