Total enrollment for 2011-12 academic year likely to approach 5,000 students
MERCED — The University of California, Merced, today reported a record number of student applications for admission to the newest UC campus next fall.
Total undergraduate applications for Fall 2011 admission increased nearly 11 percent from the prior year to 13,701, while freshman applications were up nearly 9 percent to 11,532. Applications from students hoping to transfer to UC Merced increased more than 22 percent to 2,169.
All applicant numbers represent record highs for the campus, which opened in September 2005.
UC Merced's growth rates are among the highest in the 10-campus UC system, according to data released today by the UC Office of the President . System-wide, total freshman and transfer applications increased 6.1 percent.
"We are extremely gratified by these results, especially in view of the weak state economy and the ongoing budget challenges facing the UC system," said UC Merced Chancellor Steve Kang. "Strong student interest in UC Merced is a direct reflection of the development of our core academic programs, hands-on research opportunities with award-winning faculty, and a growing array of student activities and amenities. We look forward to welcoming another outstanding class of aspiring young scholars this fall."
Kang said a net increase of approximately 600 students is anticipated for the 2011-12 academic year. That would bring total enrollment to about 5,000 students, compared with the current total of 4,381.
Kevin Browne, UC Merced assistant vice chancellor for enrollment management, said student applications are broadly representative of the entire state and reflect a highly diverse and talented mix of well-qualified candidates.
"We are seeing strong interest from every major region of the state, led by the San Francisco Bay Area, the Central Valley and the greater Los Angeles region," he said.
Nearly 60 percent of UC Merced's freshman applicants are first-generation college students — that is, neither parent has a four-year college degree. About 56 percent are from low-income families, as defined by the state.
Browne said financial aid will be available to admitted students under the university's Blue and Gold Opportunity Plan, which covers system-wide fees for California residents whose families earn less than $80,000 per year. For additional information on financial aid: http://bit.ly/gkxse5 
"Anyone who applied for admission is strongly encouraged to apply for financial aid," Browne said. "We don't want economic hardship to prevent any admitted student from realizing his or her college dream."
Important Dates for Fall 2011 Applicants
• March 2, 2011
Deadline for submitting the FAFSA and the Cal Grant GPA Verification
Form to receive a Cal Grant: www.calgrants.org 
• March 2011
Fall 2011 Admission Notification Begins
• April 16, 2011
Bobcat Day (for Admitted Students)
• April and May 2011
UC Merced Events for Admitted Students
• May 1, 2011
Freshman Statement of Intent to Register (SIR) due
• May 3, 2011
Freshman Housing Application Deadline for Guaranteed Housing
More important dates: http://bit.ly/efY9fK 
MEDIA CONTACT: Patti Waid Istas