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William & Mary welcomes new undergraduate, graduate students

  • Welcoming new students
    Welcoming new students  William & Mary is welcoming its newest undergraduate and graduate students to campus. Here, members of the campus community greet new students at last year's Opening Convocation.  Photo by Stephen Salpukas
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As the summer draws to a close, William & Mary is preparing to add another chapter to its long history as it welcomes the newest members of the Tribe to campus.

The university has already seen the arrival of its newest graduate students, and the undergraduates are not far behind with move-in day on Aug. 23 and classes starting Aug. 28.

"We look forward to welcoming the Class of 2017 and new transfer students to campus,” said Henry Broaddus, associate provost for enrollment and dean of admission. “They were selected from among the very best and brightest students, and we know they will take great advantage of all that William & Mary offers."

This year’s freshman class currently includes 1,483 students (20 of whom will be in the joint degree program with the University of St Andrews), who were chosen from a pool of 14,047. This is the ninth consecutive year that William & Mary has seen record-breaking application numbers. In addition, 191 new transfer students will join the campus community.

The Class of 2017 comes to the university with an impressive academic track record. The SAT middle 50th percentile for the class is 1270-1460, and 80 percent of the students graduated in the top 10 percent of their classes.

The incoming class is also diverse. Students of color make up approximately 30 percent of the class. About 9 percent of the new students are first-generation, and 9 percent are legacies. Some of the members of the new class include the co-founder of a non-profit that brings salt water filters to earthquake-ravaged Haiti, an Audubon Society enthusiast, a ranch hand, Miss Teenage Philippines, a winner of the National Novel Writing Month competition and an intern at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama.

The university’s new graduate students also appear to be a bright, diverse and accomplished lot.

 The School of Education has 214 new students enrolling in its graduate programs from a pool of 541 applicants. Approximately 17 percent are students of color. The average GRE verbal percentile for the group is 74th, 55th for quantitative.  Average scores on the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) were in the 70th percentile. The students have an average undergraduate GPA of 3.4, and the average graduate GPA for post-master’s students is 3.7.

 The School of Education’s new graduate students include someone who worked in residence life for Virginia Tech, a former NASA Langley employee turned middle school teacher and someone who turned a challenging teaching experience in Honduras into a learning opportunity.

 William & Mary’s Virginia Institute of Marine Science is expecting a total of 19 new graduate students. Five of those students come from the countries of China, Brazil, Canada and El Salvador.

 The Mason School of Business is poised to welcome 89 full-time candidates to its M.B.A. Class of 2015. International students make up approximately 40 percent of the class, representing more than 15 countries. The cohort is highly professional, with an average work experience of four-and-a-half years at such notable employers as: ExxonMobil, General Electric, Thomson Reuters, Deloitte, IBM, Cisco Systems, L'Oreal China and the U.S. military. Several of the new students are also pursuing joint degrees, in areas including law, public policy and accounting.

 The Mason School is also welcoming its third cohort of Major General James Wright M.B.A. Fellows from the U.S. Army. The fellows, with rank of major and captain, share an average of eight years of experience and a wealth of professional knowledge in logistics, supply chain, operations, acquisition and leadership.

A new class of 228 J.D. students arrived at the W&M Law School on Aug. 19. These students boast a median LSAT of 164 and undergraduate grade point average of 3.74. The class was selected from 5,857 applicants.  According to the Law School Admission Council, William & Mary was one of only 11 of the nation’s 200 law schools to report an increase in applications this year.

Members of the J.D. Class of 2016 have degrees from 149 different undergraduate colleges and universities, 13 in Virginia and 136 in other locations. They hail from 40 states, D.C., and two other countries (China and Japan). More than 40 percent have full-time work experience, and 16 have master’s degrees. Eleven have served in the military, and six are attending law school under the auspices of the highly selective Funded Legal Education Program (FLEP).

The Law School also welcomed 56 new students into its LL.M. program, which serves students who have received their legal training outside of the United States. These students are citizens of China, Indonesia, Mexico, Qatar, Russia, and the United Kingdom. Two additional students – from Morocco and Saudi Arabia - will join the LL.M. Program in January.

Among the Arts & Sciences graduate programs, 123 new graduate students will be entering programs in American studies, anthropology, applied science, biology, chemistry, computer science, history, physics, psychology and public policy. 

Seventy percent of those students conducted research as undergraduates, with most receiving awards or honors for their scholarship.  Approximately 63 percent have contributed to their communities through volunteer service, and more than 74 percent have been teachers or mentors to preschoolers through senior citizens.

Twenty percent of the entering Arts & Sciences graduate students self-identified as students of color, including international students from seven countries. Among the new students are a women’s rights task force coordinator, Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics volunteer, novice strongman competitor and members of the U.S. Army.