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More Than 800 High School Seniors Are First Members of Duke's Class of 2020

The students will find out this evening that they are the first members of Duke’s Class of 2020

On Thursday evening, 813 high school seniors will find out they are the first members of Duke University's Class of 2020. This year, 3,455 students applied under Duke's Early Decision program, a record number and more than 11 percent more than last year. Those who apply via Early Decision have already selected Duke as their first-choice college, and commit to enroll at the university if they receive an offer of admission. Students admitted through Early Decision this year will represent 48 percent of next fall's incoming class, which is expected to total 1,705 students. Of the 813 students offered admission, 641 will enroll in the Trinity College of Arts & Sciences and the remaining 172 will enroll in the Pratt School of Engineering. For the first time, California is the state with the greatest representation among students admitted through Early Decision, followed closely by New York and North Carolina. Students of color comprise 37 percent of those admitted, and international students make up nine percent. Last year, the university accepted 815 students through Early Decision. Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Christoph Guttentag said the increase in applicants made for difficult decisions.    "We prefer to fill under half of the class through Early Decision, and the larger applicant pool meant we had to be a little more selective,” he said. “My staff and I noticed how many of our applicants had particularly strong academic records and had made deep and meaningful commitments to activities outside the classroom. Unfortunately, there were many outstanding individuals we weren’t able to admit.” "The ones we did admit will be a terrific beginning to the Class of 2020." With the increase in the number of applicants, the admit rate for Early Decision dropped to just under 24 percent, the most selective Early Decision process in Duke's history.      Starting at 7 p.m. Thursday, students will be able to receive their decisions online. Typically several hundred students view their decisions in the first several minutes, with most viewing their decisions within an hour. Those admitted students who applied for financial aid will also receive information about much aid they will be awarded. Of those who applied via Early Decision this year, 663 were deferred to the spring Regular Decision process. Guttentag said the majority of places in the Class of 2020 would continue to be filled by Regular Decision applicants. Last year, Duke received more than 28,000 Regular Decision applications. The deadline for Regular Admission applicants is Jan. 3, and final decisions will be made available to students March 30.