Freshman Applications Surge Past 15,000 at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute


Media Relations

March 26, 2012

Freshman Applications Surge Past 15,000 at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Another Record Year for Applications to Rensselaer

It’s official. A record total of 15, 201 high school students have filed applications to attend Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute this fall, according to numbers released today by the Rensselaer Office of Admissions. This year’s total represents a growth of more than four percent since last year at this time, and a 172 percent increase since 2005.

“For seven consecutive years, Rensselaer has set records for freshman applications. Since 2005, applications have grown by 172 percent,” said Paul Marthers, vice president for enrollment and dean of undergraduate and graduate admissions. “It is exciting to see that our around-the-globe outreach efforts have translated into unprecedented levels of popularity among prospective students.

Marthers noted that for the second consecutive year, the average SAT critical reading and math score for the admitted group is 1400.

The 2012 applicant pool also represents a continued expansion of the national and international profile of the student body, as well as a significant increase in applications from women, underrepresented minority students, international students, and Rensselaer “legacies”— students with relatives who attended the university.

In addition, the group includes students who have been nominated for the Rensselaer Medal, a scholarship awarded to the top math and science students at almost 3,000 high schools around the world.

According to the Rensselaer Office of Admissions, this year’s overall increase in applications was also driven by greater numbers of students visiting campus, a higher conversion rate from the inquiry to the application stage, and new student life programs designed to enhance the overall student and educational experience. 

“Rensselaer also continues to register growing  interest  in new areas of an expanding curriculum, such as Cognitive Science, Design, Innovation, and Society, Sustainability Studies, and the new concentrations in Management, beyond the Institute’s traditional of strength in engineering, Marthers said. “Here on campus we know that Rensselaer has historically been a top producer of future leaders and innovators, so it is very encouraging to see external evidence that more and more students value the high-quality academic and co-curricular programs that we offer.”

Rensselaer will host its annual Accepted Student Celebration event on April 14. For information regarding Rensselaer Admissions, visit:


For general inquiries:

About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is America’s first technological research university. Rensselaer encompasses five schools, over 30 research centers, more than 140 academic programs including 25 new programs, and a dynamic community made up of over 6,800 students and 104,000 living alumni. Rensselaer faculty and alumni include upwards of 155 National Academy members, six members of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, six National Medal of Technology winners, five National Medal of Science winners, and a Nobel Prize winner in Physics. With nearly 200 years of experience advancing scientific and technological knowledge, Rensselaer remains focused on addressing global challenges with a spirit of ingenuity and collaboration. To learn more, please visit