Advice and hope for Caltech waitlist?

Hello, I was recently waitlisted for Caltech which was honestly a very happy moment for me. I thought I was an instant rejection seeing other people haha. I’m trying to be optimistic and I’m writing a 1 page-long LOCI discussing any new updates as well as reaffirming that it is my #1 choice and that I’d attend in a heartbeat.

What are the chances that I’ll get off the waitlist? The document they sent me told me that in the past years 0-40 students have been accepted. Is there recorded data about this? Does anyone know how many students were accepted out of the waitlist and how large it was? What is the trend?

With COVID-19 going around, your chances are much better than they would have been last year. That still doesn’t mean much if you can’t afford it, though.

Is it because of people less willing to travel far to the school? I live within driving distance to Caltech so would that bump my chances up even more? I know location is probably part of the bottom of the list in terms of who they accept, but I’m just curious since this year is monumentally different.

It’s different this year because people can’t visit to see for themselves if the culture is a good match. There’s no PreFrosh weekend, so no chance to see the House system in action, for example.

Do you think that this year the waitlist acceptance rate would increase significantly? I live within driving distance to Caltech, and I have visited the campus a couple of times. Do you think my location would place me at an advantage for this year?

Waitlist activity will depend on how many admitted students commit. No one here knows whether living close to CalTech will place you higher on the waitlist.

I don’t know whether CalTech is need blind or need aware when going to the waitlist, but many schools are need aware (even those who are need blind for normal rounds) which advantages waitlisted students who are full pay, or with relatively low financial need.

^Other than for international students, Caltech is completely need blind throughout its admission process.

Couldn’t find that on the website, do you have a link?

^No web link. I was informed previously and presumably there hasn’t been any change since then.

has anyone gotten a response from caltech via email or phone? they seem completely unreachable now

^ I emailed them earlier this week and haven’t gotten any responses.

Anyone heard anything from Caltech?

Not a word from Caltech. Called the office, but they are closed. Anybody else heard?

Someone got off 2 days ago on reddit

Can you please link your source? I’m just curious. The last email Caltech sent me just said they’ll notify by email.

On phone rn but if you go on A2C there’s a person who was comparing JHU and Caltech a few days ago.

How many people do they normally take from the waitlist? TBH I was expecting more people to get off the waitlist this year. Do you guys think they will take more people in the future?

Looking at the common data set, they usually take around 5-8 people a year but they had one year where they took out like 46 people. Still have no idea, since the only sign of waitlist activity is that Reddit post, but no one has verified anything and Caltech’s office is pretty dead.

In a faculty town hall on April 30, the topic of this year’s enrollment came up:

This was just the day before the final deadline of May 1. If some students waited until the last day to commit, Caltech could easily exceed it enrollment goal of 230-235 students each year based on recent enrollment data.

Assuming that Reddit post about the girl getting off the waitlist was true, I’m guessing that they didn’t hit their maximum occupancy on May 1. Does Caltech release their waitlist decisions in waves or do they announce everyone they’re considering in a single day? I know there aren’t many people who are in that boat, but there has to be some record right?