Sean Madigan

The College of Biological Sciences will increase undergraduate admission standards next year due to a more than 29 percent increase in enrollment this year. This will make its undergraduate admission standards the most competitive at the University, along with the Carlson School of Management.
Despite modest increases in average college enrollment throughout the University, the College of Biological Sciences saw the most growth of any college or program within the University.
Enrollment in the college soared this fall primarily due to changes in admissions standards and next year’s conversion to semesters.
The college accepted 215 new freshmen this fall — at least 100 more than 1997, the first year freshman were eligible to apply.
“That’s about 100 percent more than we originally targeted,” college outreach coordinator Paul Germscheid said. The University automatically accepts students based on a formula derived from ACT scores and high school class standing. Students’ ACT composite scores are doubled and then added to their high school class rank percentile.
This year students needed a minimum score of 120, but the increase in enrollment is causing the college to boost the minimum score to 135.
“They’re the brightest group of students on campus,” Germscheid said, referring to the incoming students.
The College of Education and Human Development also saw a considerable enrollment increase.
Associate Dean Mary Bents believes the largest portion of the increase is in the professional master’s program.
The College of Education targeted professionals nearing completion of their master’s program, Bents said.
“We sent letters reminding professionals that the University will be converting to semesters, and we urged them to finish while we are still the quarter system,” Bents said.
The college also saw a 22 percent jump in their undergraduate enrollment. Bents noted that percentages can be deceptive.
“We’re not a large college. The percentages are really relative to the number of students,” Bents said. Throughout the University system, the number of students enrolled on all four campuses rose 5.4 percent from last year.
Statewide, 51,835 students are attending the University system — 2,651 more than the previous year. The Office of the Registrar reported 39,595 students enrolled at the Twin Cities campus, up 1,980 from last year. There are 25,903 undergraduates, 9,426 graduate, 2,605 professional and 1,661 unclassified students attending the University on the Twin Cities campus.