El Segundo High School

Who is admitted into Dartmouth College?

Earlier in the week, high school seniors across America selected the college they will attend in the fall. Some of those seniors committed to an Ivy League university.

I had the opportunity to assess from a demographic vantage point, just who gets in to the Ivy League, vis-à-vis share what Dartmouth College has published as the demographic makeup of their class of 2020 (http://now.dartmouth.edu).  I am going to presume that the Dartmouth statistics are fairly representative of the rest of the Ivy Leagues.

You have to be smart, really smart: The first statistic that was illuminating; just how darn smart you need to be to get in. 37.1% are valedictorians! That’s a fairly staggering statistic.  Additionally, 94.6% are in the top 10% of their high school class, and have a Mean ACT 32.8, and Mean SAT of 2219.

Non-white: I was very surprised to read that 51.6% are “students of color” as Dartmouth phrases it. This seemed like a high number, but inspiring, as America becomes more diverse; today whites make up 62% of the general population in the United States, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Public vs. Private: As a student myself that attended both public and private school, I am aware there is a perception that private school is an advantage when aiming to get into an Ivy.  Not so at Dartmouth. 63% attend public schools, while 25.4% attend private schools

International students: We hear a lot these days about international students “taking the spots of American students.” Hence, I was again surprised to see that only 8.2% are international students.

Legacy: It appears that you there is a slight edge incumbent in being a child of a Dartmouth alumni; 8.1 % are legacy.

Athletes: Some say that athletes are taking up all of the spots at the Ivy Leagues with lower academic qualifications that the rest of the students admitted. While Dartmouth did not release the academic metrics of the athletes, they did release that only 10% are recruited athletes.

Paying: So, you got in, and now you face the daunting task of how will you pay for this Ivy League education?  Never fear, if you are one of the lucky ones that receives an offer to attend Dartmouth, 47.7% will qualify for need-based financial aid.

In analyzing Dartmouth’s class of 2020 statistics, the bottom line is that the students admitted are a really, really smart. They are a diverse group of mostly American students, primarily deriving from public schools.