With the beginning of the new academic year, Drexel University has welcomed 2,990 freshmen after receiving about 37,085 applications for the class of 2026/2027.
Since the pandemic, the undergraduate admissions office has revised some of its policies and outreach to prospective students. The most popular of these changes has been the test-optional policy, originally implemented for the previous freshmen class, which no longer requires prospective students to submit their SAT or ACT scores. Over the last year, Drexel has seen a 7% increase in applications and a 22% increase over the past five years.
Senior Vice President of Enrollment Management Evelyn Thimba believes that this increase in applications can be explained, at least in part, by the decision to make standardized tests optional.
According to Thimba, the incoming class is 51.1% male and 48.9% female. 42.8% identify as students of color, with 17.6% identifying as underrepresented students of color. This demographic includes students who identify as Black or African-American, Latinx or Native American.
Nearly 29.1% of the freshman class identify as first-generation college students, an increase from last year’s 27%. Additionally, 28.2% of students are Pell grant eligible.
Though 43.7% of the incoming class is from Pennsylvania, members of the freshman class have come all across the country to attend Drexel. The other top states students are coming from include New Jersey, New York, Maryland, and California.
About 10% of the incoming freshman class are international students hailing from 57 different countries. The top five countries students are coming from are India, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Nigeria, and Pakistan.
Despite the many ongoing challenges prospective students have had to face the past few years, it is clear that there is an increasing interest in Drexel and that the university is embracing its commitments to becoming a more diverse and inclusive institution per class.