Colgate Welcomes Class of 2021


Link staff stands on the Colgate sign to welcome the  Class of 2021 to campus. This class has the strongest incoming academic profile of any class at Colgate.

Emily Rahhal, Class of 2021

On Friday, August 25, Colgate’s 774 first-year students enjoyed their first official community ice cream social and meal in Frank Dining Hall. This class has already shown high academic and standardized test achievement.

“This class is extremely talented. You are the highest reported SATs and ACTs this university has ever seen. Your GPA is a little unusually high,” President Brian Casey said. 

The Class of 2021 was admitted with a 32.5 percent acceptance rate. The school’s most selective year was 2015 with an acceptance rate of 27 percent, according to US News and World Report

“All signs show this is a class of great promise,” Casey said.

The first-year students represent 49 states and 128 countries, making this class more geographically diverse than previous classes, according to the Colgate website. Only 50 percent of the class comes from New York and its adjoining states of Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Connecticut. 

“The most important priority each year is the quality of the academic record. We want students who are going to be active and involved in the classroom,” Vice President and Dean of Admission and Financial Aid Gary Ross said.

For the first year in Colgate’s history, 64 percent of the Class of 2021 applied with an ACT score rather than an SAT score, which Ross believes further exhibits the geographical diversity of the class. The ACT is more dominant in the Midwest and Southern regions of the United States, according to The New York Times.

Ross found a few common themes when reading the personal essays of admitted first-years. According to Ross, the Class of 2021 is thoughtful and considerate on paper and in action, motivated and eager to learn. 

“It’s clear that what we read about this class was no accident. It is a class that will be working hard to make, what I hope, each and every [student] will find to be a great community,” Ross said. 

The first-years will be the first class to enjoy a larger Residential Commons program made up of four Commons communities: Brown Commons, Ciccone Commons, Colegrove Commons and Hancock Commons. Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy Jeff Bary remarked that, in being the first class to fully participate in the Residential Commons program, the Class of 2021 will have the opportunity to create and develop lasting traditions. 

Colgate community members were excited to welcome the new class to campus. Ross expressed his enthusiasm toward meeting the newest class.

“Move-in day for the entering class is my favorite day of the year. Period,” Ross said.

Contact Emily Rahhal at [email protected].