The University of San Diego’s Office of Undergraduate Admissions, in an effort to streamline its first-time freshman application process, has announced the elimination of its early-action program to create a single application deadline of December 15.
“Given the volume of applications we receive, we wanted to provide students with consistent information regarding application decisions, merit awards and admitted student events,” said Stephen Pultz, USD’s assistant vice president of enrollment. “Having a single deadline will allow our team to give all students full consideration in the application process. We feel this will decrease anxiety among students and families, expedite the decision-making process and streamline communication between our office and applicants.”
The elimination of the November 15 deadline is effective immediately for Fall 2013 applicants. Transfer students are not affected by this change. They still have until March 1 if interested in starting in the fall and an October 1 deadline for spring applications.
The increase in the number of applications to the university, Pultz said, created logistical issues and the single deadline addresses this issue.
“Since 2010 we have experienced a 52 percent increase in early-action applications and our overall application increase has been 36 percent, so an increasingly larger share of our applicant pool is applying early. Despite that increase, we have found that these students don’t choose to come to USD with any greater frequency than those who apply through regular admissions.”
Eliminating the earlier deadline demonstrates USD’s interest in attracting and admitting the highest-possible caliber of student applicants.
“As the size of our applicant pool increases, the quality has increased, too, and this has made it increasingly difficult for us to make decisions and draw our merit scholarship parameters without the benefit of seeing our entire pool.”
Pultz noted the existing pressure placed on students to apply to colleges early, but that the single deadline procedure is designed to make applying to USD easier.
“Our priority is to assist students with the application process and provide a structure that is as stress-free as possible,” he said. “For the student there is one deadline, one notification date and one set of activities to experience once admitted.”
Pultz added that the simplified deadline is expected to expedite merit scholarship notifications.
“Generally, our families want to know if their student will be offered a merit scholarship as early as possible during the admissions process. With the old early-action time frame, we were hesitant to draw our merit parameters well before the majority of our applications were evaluated. The new regular decision deadline will result in students and their families receiving merit award decisions sooner in the process.”
— Ryan T. Blystone