Members of the Columbia College Class of 2013 began a weeklong New Student Orientation Program on Monday, August 31, with Convocation, the official ceremony that welcomes the new class and their families to Columbia. President Lee C. Bollinger and the new Dean of Columbia College, Michele Moody-Adams, presided over the ceremony, along with Feniosky Peña-Mora, the new Dean of SEAS.
Moody-Adams was treated to a round of "Happy Birthday" (her birthday was Monday) by students as she took the podium to address her fellow "freshmen" and their parents.
"We are embarking on a remarkable journey," she told the audience of 5,000 enjoying a perfect late summer day under tents on South Lawn. Columbia is "a community in which it is possible for even our newest members to accomplish some pretty remarkable things."
The College Class of 2013 numbers 1,099, an increase of about 50 compared with a year ago. A record total of 21,273 applications were received and 1,897 students were accepted, an admit rate of 8.92 percent. There were 2,441 early decision applicants and 486 were accepted, accounting for 45 percent of the class.
SEAS admitted 599 students from among 4,154 applicants, a 14.42 percent admit rate. The SEAS Class of 2013 numbers 317, including 153 early decision admits from among 501 applicants.
"You are part of our family now, the Columbia family," Kevin Shollenberger, dean of student affairs, told the incoming students. "We have a lot to be proud of here at Columbia, but our entering students are clearly at the top of that list."
Of schools that provided a class rank, approximately 93 percent of students accepted to the College and SEAS were in the top 10 percent of their class and 98 percent were in the top 20 percent. The middle 50 percent of admitted students scored between 1410 and 1540 on the Math and Critical Reading sections of the SAT (out of a maximum of 1600),; between 2110 and 2300 on the Math, Critical Reading and Writing sections of the SAT (out of a maximum of 2400); and between 31 and 35 on the ACT.
The top states represented in the Class of 2013 are New York, California, New Jersey, Florida, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Texas, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Illinois, while the top countries (aside from the United States) are South Korea, Canada, China, India, United Kingdom, Mexico, Singapore, Thailand, Turkey and Ghana. The Class of 2013 is 51 percent male and 49 percent female, and approximately 53 percent receive financial aid, 52 percent self-identify as students of color and 17 percent are the first in their families to attend college.
"Use every day to learn about new and different things," advised Geoffrey Colvin '74, '77L, '78 Business, president of the Columbia College Alumni Association. "Your Columbia experience will be terrific."