Efforts result in smaller ’07 class

Almost 1,950 high school seniors will enroll at Northwestern in the fall — about 20 students more than the number desired by the Office of Undergraduate Admission.

Officials established a target class size of 1,925 freshmen and 1,947 students have sent in enrollment deposits so far. NU sent out about 4,700 acceptance letters this year.

But Rebecca Dixon, associate provost for university enrollment, said the size of the class of 2007 is good news following the enrollment of 80 more students than were expected in this year’s freshman class.

“While deposits last year were higher than 1,947, we wound up with too many freshmen,” Dixon wrote in an e-mail Monday. “Thus, we are pleased with the record to date.”

Undergraduate Admission continues to receive contracts because the postmark date for contracts was May 1, Dixon said.

Last year 2,089 students had sent in deposits at this time. Only 2,005 freshmen ultimately enrolled.

More students than expected sent in deposit slips in 2000 and 2001. But in the past three years, the number who said they would matriculate has been greater than the number of students who show up on campus in the fall.

Many reasons cause students to decide not to enroll between now and September. About 10 students in the class of 2006 — all males from countries with large Muslim populations — had difficulty obtaining student visas because of more restrictive U.S. security policies.

One hundred fewer high school seniors were accepted this year to prevent the enrollment of too many undergraduates.

Some problems resulting from the unusually large freshman class became issues on campus.

The housing-assignment process, which concluded last week, left nearly 50 undergraduates on a waiting list. All incoming freshmen are guaranteed housing. Seniors, juniors and sophomores, in descending order, have priority for space not set aside for freshmen.

Mark D’Arienzo, associate director of university housing, said NU will reserve a minimum of 1,925 spaces for incoming freshmen. Because it is difficult to predict a precise male and female breakdown of the class of 2007, D’Arienzo said NU holds additional spaces.

“If indeed there are 20 more than expected, those people will be accommodated,” D’Arienzo said. “The upperclass waiting list is sufficiently short enough where additional spaces will be returned to the freshman pool once the upperclassmen have been accommodated.”

The Daily’s Ben Figa contributed to this report.