News Column

UC Davis Enrolling Fewer Freshmen From California

April 19, 2013

Cathy Locke

The University of California, Davis has admitted nearly 22,000 applicants for its freshman class this fall, but they include fewer California students than last year and more students from other states and countries.

UC Davis' admissions reflect the University of California's goal to substantially increase the number of out-of-state and international undergraduate students ever since lawmakers imposed state budget cuts during the recession.

Dianne Klein, a spokeswoman for UC's Office of the President, said students from out of state pay approximately $23,000 per year more in tuition and fees than California students, who pay about $15,000 a year.

Students from out of state are sought for diversity and to generate revenue for UC campuses and help compensate for the decline in state funding.

"The academic year 2011-12 marked the grim turning point," Klein said in an email. "Under the 2011-2012 state budget, student tuition and fees for the first time in UC history contributed more to core operating funds at UC than the state general fund: nearly $3 billion through student tuition and fees vs. $2.37 billion from the state."

The number of California students admitted depends on state funding, which has declined significantly in recent years, said Michael Trevino, UC's director of undergraduate admissions.

State funding accounts for about 9 percent of UC Davis' 2012-13 budget, said Katy Maloney, director of the campus' Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships.

Only a fraction of students accepted for admission typically enroll: about 5,100 accepted at UC Davis are expected to arrive this fall. Admitted freshmen must submit a statement of intent to register by May 1.

Despite increases in their California applicants, UC Davis and UC Santa Cruz cut in-state admission offers by more significant amounts than other campuses this year. UC Davis offered spots to 10.4 percent less Californians, while UC Santa Cruz offered entry to 14.3 percent less residents.

UC Davis officials say that is because more in-state applicants than expected agreed to enroll last year. After 330 more California students enrolled last year than the school planned for, Davis expects about 230 fewer California freshman this year, balancing out last year's over-enrollment.

The UC Davis campus received 55,895 freshmen applications for fall 2013 and offered admission to 21,998 for an overall admit rate of 39.4 percent.

Of the applicants, 45,742 were California residents and 16,942, or 37 percent, were offered admission. Of the 3,365 applicants from other states, 1,838, or 54.6 percent, were offered admission, while 3,218, or 47.4 percent of the 6,788 international applicants were accepted for admission.

Because out-of-state and international students historically accept admission offers at a much lower rate than Californians, offers to those students were increased to meet enrollment targets, officials said.

UC Davis students admitted this year come from 49 states -- only North Dakota is not represented -- and 103 countries, said Walter Robinson, UC Davis' executive director of admissions. Among international students, the largest number are from China, with India a distant second.

Officials said about 28.9 percent of California residents admitted to UC Davis this year are from low-income families, compared with 29.4 percent last year.

"Our focus continues to be access to California students," Trevino said. He added that UC continues to serve more low-income students than any other research university.

Among California students, most accepted at UC Davis come from Northern California with the bulk from the San Francisco Bay Area. Of those from Southern California, the majority come from the Los Angeles area.

The University of California's nine undergraduate campuses received a total of 139,915 undergraduate applications for fall 2013 and admitted 82,850 students. Of those admitted systemwide, 60,089 are California residents, 11,787 are from other states and 10,974 are from other countries. Those numbers are adjusted in order to avoid double counting applicants to multiple UC schools.

UC Davis on Thursday also announced the launch of a new financial aid program for California students, the Aggie Grant Plan. The program will award about $3,000 annually to eligible students with annual family incomes between $80,000 and $120,000. The grants will cover about 25 percent of the approximately $12,000 in base tuition and fees.

The Aggie Grant Plan is supported through federal, state and university funds as well as private grants and scholarships.

The new program expands on the University of California's Blue and Gold Opportunity Plan, which covers base tuition and fees for students with annual family incomes of up to $80,000.

To be eligible for the Aggie Grant Plan, a student must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, which is due March 2 of each year; be enrolled as a first- to fourth-year undergraduate at UC Davis; be a California resident; and have an annual family income of $80,000 to $120,000 and parental assets of less than $200,000, excluding home value.

NEW PROGRAM

UC Davis announced on Thursday the launch of a new financial aid program for state students, the Aggie Grant Plan.

The program will award about $3,000 annually to eligible students with annual family incomes between $80,000 and $120,000.

The grants will cover about 25 percent of the approximately $12,000 in base tuition and fees.

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(c)2013 The Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, Calif.)

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Source: Copyright Sacramento Bee (CA) 2013