The number of students who actually put down a deposit after being accepted to a college or university equals the acceptance yield. This figure could be important in a year that has been influenced by an economic downturn and have significant impact on overall acceptance to colleges and how colleges react.
As of May 8, Jacques Steinberg reports in The New York Times there has not been much variation in yields so far. Harvard anticipated a decrease of 5 percentage points in its yield rate, but there has been no such drop. They are at a 76 percent yield, the same yield rate they had in 2008. But, Harvard also will have 65% of its 2009 incoming first-year students using scholarship aid as compared to 58% of their present first-year class. This means a 7 percent increase to the Harvard financial aid budget.
Pomona and Wesleyan also report similar yields in 2009 compared to last year, and Yale’s yield is stronger than expected. On the other hand, the expected increase at public universities which offer less expensive education is not evident. The University Of Virginia yield is up only one percentage point, and the University of Wisconsin at Madison is actually two percentage points lower.
So far it doesn’t look like the downturn in the economy means there will be any breaks for wait-listed applicants; but Georgetown University, Providence College, and Hartwick College say they still have openings for incoming students.
We will have to wait until June 1 for the final results to come in.