Andover Boasts High Percentage Of Matriculation: 74% Tops SPS and PEA

The Admissions Office reported that 74% of this year’s accepted students have decided to matriculate at Andover. This figure is typical for Phillips Academy, which usually has a 71-74% yield, but is higher than those of its peer schools. Andover’s greatest competitors, Phillips Exeter Academy and St. Paul’s, had yields of 64% and 69%, respectively. Senior Associate Dean of Admission Deborah Murphy noted that a change in the school’s financial aid policies was the cause for 83% of financial aid recipients matriculating. Murphy said, “With great work from [Director of Financial Aid] Jim Ventre and the Board of Trustees, [the school] initiated new Financial Aid policies…we did away with student loans and replaced them with scholarship grants, and we also instituted a laptop computer program for heavy- and full-scholarship students.” Murphy noted two particular programs for prospective students that had high admissions yields: the Spring Visit program and the Flyback program. This year, 213 current students hosted visitors. Based on the classes they visited and conversations they had with house counselors and coaches, 81% of the prospective students who participated in Spring Visits matriculated. Changes in this year’s Spring Visits included sample classes offered by the Theatre and Dance, Science, Math, and World Language departments during conference period. In addition, 79% of the Black and Hispanic students who visited the campus as part of the Flyback program matriculated. Flyback is a program for students who are significant scholarship recipients and have not visited PA post-acceptance. This year, the program included tours of downtown Andover, the Addison Gallery American Art and the Gelb Science Center. The Phillips Academy Admissions staff has worked to increase travel for the past three years and reach out to students of all backgrounds. They wish to continue attracting “youth from every corner,” as well as to counteract the downward trend in applicants that many schools are seeing. This year’s incoming junior class of about 230 students—consisting of approximately 151 boarders and 79 day students—is slightly larger than usual. To accommodate the increase in 9th graders, Andover will change Samaritan House, currently an upperclassmen girls’ dorm, and Bertha Bailey House, an upperclassmen boys’ dorm, into freshman dorms. New sections of History 100 and English 100 courses, which are exclusively for freshmen, will also be added in order to allow for the increased number of students. In addition, 57 new lowers, including 7 day students; 20 new uppers, including 1 day student; and 30 new seniors and PGs, including 2 day students, have given word that they are coming. This number is subject to change before the beginning of the 2007-2008 school year. Andover is a diverse school with students who represent most states and many countries, but according to Murphy, “for the first time in many years, we will welcome a new student from the great state of Nebraska!” A new Upper from Zimbabwe will also join the class of 2009. Through the end of the school year and the summer, the Admissions Office will stay in contact with the entering students, answering, as Murphy said, questions ranging from “course placements and academic advising, to advice on whether or not to use the laundry service.” The Admission Office uses this time as a way acquainting new students with the Andover way of life, as well as a way of gleaning information that will help Dean of Students and Residential Life Marlys Edwards in assigning the students to their rooms and dormitories.