Duke Offers Admission to More Than 2,300 High School Seniors

A record number of more than 34,000 students applied for admission

Among the Regular Decision applicant pool, 2,255 students -- 7.3 percent -- will receive a notice of acceptance inviting them to become members of the Class of 2021.
Among the Regular Decision applicant pool, 2,255 students -- 7.3 percent -- will receive a notice of acceptance inviting them to become members of the Class of 2021.

DURHAM, N.C. -- More than 2,300 high school seniors from across the country and around the world who go online at 7 p.m. ET Wednesday will learn they have been accepted to Duke University.

More than 34,400 students applied for admission this year -- the highest number ever received -- with almost 31,000 applying under Duke’s Regular Decision program. Among the Regular Decision applicant pool, 2,255 students -- 7.3 percent -- will receive a notice of acceptance inviting them to become members of the Class of 2021. Another 58 students who applied Early Decision and whose decisions were deferred to March will also learn they have been admitted.

These students have until May 1 to make their final decisions.

In December, 861 students were admitted under the university's binding Early Decision program, comprising 50 percent of the Class of 2021.

“The Regular Decision applicants were so impressive, not just in their academic accomplishments but even more in their engagement in learning and in contributing to their communities,” said Christoph Guttentag, dean of undergraduate admissions. “Being able to admit only about 7 percent of them made the selection process particularly challenging for us. It was difficult to choose among the many exceptional young women and men who included Duke on their college lists.”

Duke's admissions policy is "need blind" for all applicants except international students, meaning that applicants are accepted regardless of their ability to pay for college. Duke meets 100 percent of demonstrated financial need for all admitted students.

This was the first year that Duke participated in the QuestBridge Scholars program, a recruitment program geared specifically toward low-income and first-generation students; 36 of the admitted Early Decision students are QuestBridge Scholars.

"We were so pleased to begin our partnership with QuestBridge this year; with the other students admitted in our Early Decision program they set a high bar for the Regular Decision pool,” Guttentag said.

This is also the second year for the Washington Duke Scholars, a program for exceptionally talented students from around the country who are the first in their families to attend college and who have demonstrated financial need.

"The Washington Duke Scholars program was so successful in its inaugural year that we plan to double the number of participants in the Class of 2021,” Guttentag said. “These students bring so much to the Duke community; more importantly, they have experience in taking advantage of the opportunities available to them. That makes them a terrific match with Duke and all that it offers its undergraduates.”

All admitted students are invited to campus for Blue Devil Days, a series of two-day events that provide students and their parents opportunities to discuss Duke's offerings with faculty and administrators, attend classes and tour Duke's campus. Participants also can get acquainted with other members of the Class of 2021. This year, Blue Devil Days will be held at three different times: April 13-14, April 17-18 and April 23-24.  

All applicants will be able to receive their decisions online, but only those students who are admitted will receive mailed letters. As in previous recent years, students will be able to reply online to offers of admission or the opportunity to be placed on the waiting list.