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Applications to University at Buffalo increase by more than 10 percent

Undergraduate applications for admission to the University at Buffalo were up by more than 10 percent from last year, with the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences seeing the highest growth in interest from potential students, according to university officials.

The university through Thursday had received 19,848 undergraduate applications, compared to 18,022 applications received by the same date in 2015.

UB, the largest university within the State University of New York system, also reported greater diversity within this year’s applicant pool, particularly among Hispanic, African-American and Asian-American students. It could end up being UB’s most diverse pool of applicants in five years.

And based on SAT profiles, the class of students for 2016 also will likely be stronger academically than in 2015.

“We have recruited significantly more than in previous years and become much more strategic and direct in delivering a very clear message to prospective students and their families,” said Jose Aviles, associate vice provost and director of admissions. “This has resonated in a way that has produced one of the largest and strongest applicant pools at UB in recent history.”

UB recruiters regularly emailed and telephoned high school students to remind them of the academic and research opportunities awaiting them in Buffalo.

“Prospective students got some form of communication from us every week,” Aviles said.

The diversity of current applicants to UB has increased by 13.4 percent over the same period in 2015. Applicants representing minority populations make up 51 percent of all students applying to the university, compared to 49 percent in 2015. The most significant gains include: Hispanic, 21 percent more; African-American, 13 percent more; and Asian-American, 8 percent more.

Geographic diversity also is on the rise, with a 12 percent increase in applications from those outside New York State.

In the past, UB did not have a hard deadline for filing applications, but the university instituted an application submission deadline of Feb. 1 beginning this year. University officials believe that they’ve already received the bulk of applications for admission in the fall.

The university also this year began notifying students earlier of their acceptance into the institution. Nearly 7,000 applicants already have been admitted into UB for fall 2016, Aviles said in an interview. The early notification helps students, their parents and the university plan better and get more certainty, he said.

“We know that there’s high anxiety in college admissions,” Aviles said. “Part of our responsibility is to help provide some transparency in that process.”