A New Record

UCSB again hits an all-time high, receiving 109,803 applications from prospective freshmen and transfer students for fall 2018

Continuing a decades-long trend, UC Santa Barbara has set a record for the number of first-year students seeking admission to the seaside campus.

UCSB has received 92,017 applications from prospective freshmen for fall 2018, an increase of more than 12 percent over last year.

Home to 11 national centers and institutes, and more than 100 research units, UCSB offers unparalleled learning opportunities for undergraduate students. The world-class faculty includes six Nobel laureates, two Academy and Emmy Award winners, and recipients of the Millennium Technology Prize, the National Medal of Technology and Innovation the Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics.

In addition, UCSB is ranked No. 8 in U.S. News & World Report’s 2018 listing of the Top 30 Public National Universities.

The number of California freshman applicants increased by 7,971 — 13.6 percent over 2017, for a total of 66,436. Applications from out-of-state students went up slightly to 9,530, and the number of international student applications rose by 8.7 percent to 16,051.

“Our outreach team is committed to attracting great students to UC Santa Barbara,” said Lisa Przekop, UCSB director of admissions. “This fall our staff completed approximately 1,600 visits to high schools and community colleges, meeting with more than 90,000 students and parents. In addition, we tour more than 50,000 visitors annually. UC Santa Barbara is growing in popularity as families learn more about our top-ranked programs, esteemed academic reputation and the outstanding career success of our alumni.”

UCSB also continues to attract a diverse pool of prospective students. The campus received a total of 25,393 freshman applications from African-American, Native American, and Chicano and Latino students combined. This represents more than 38 percent of the applicant pool.

Attesting to UCSB’s reputation across the country and around the world, applications from prospective U.S. nonresident and international students increased by 10 percent over last year, to 25,581.

UCSB received 17,786 applications from college students seeking to transfer to the university. That represents an increase of 5.9 percent over last year. Of the total, 14,394 are California residents.

“Beyond visiting schools and providing tours to campus visitors, the Office of Admissions uses technology to reach students who we might not meet during in-person visits or campus tours,” Przekop said. “We host webinars, college fairs, virtual one-on-one advising with transfer students using tools such as Skype, and virtual campus tours available in four languages.

“Social media platforms are useful tools for delivering information as well but it will never replace the in-person advising we prefer to deliver,” Przekop continued. “In the last year staff have spent time sending personalized, hand-written notes to applicants to let them know this is a very personal process and real people are reviewing their applications in great depth.”

The admissions team already has begun that process.  “The staff have been working hard reviewing the applications, knowing that we have many more to complete this year compared to last year,” Przekop said. “Even with the fires happening in Santa Barbara, staff are in the office answering calls and emails and reassuring applicants that we are giving their applications our full attention.”

Describing the applicants as “amazing,” she said, “I marvel at students’ ability to achieve stellar academic performance while participating in school activities, volunteering in their communities, working part-time jobs and preparing for their futures at the university.”

The UC system received a record 221,000 applications from prospective freshmen, which represents an increase of 5.7 percent. All nine UC undergraduate campuses saw gains in total applicants. Chicanos/Latinos remained the largest ethnic group among California freshman applicants.

The UC Office of the President has posted statistics on undergraduate applications to all campuses. They can be found here.

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