Hamilton Receives Record Number of Applications - A third more than last year

“The receipt of 8,338 applications, roughly one-third more than last year’s record total of 6,240, provided both an exhilarating and challenging start to the year for the Hamilton admission team.”


Wow. That’s the largest percentage increase in Class of 2023 apps I’ve seen so far. Great for Hamilton, I really liked that school, D19 not so much.

That will be a small percentage of applicants accepted!

Given that last year the acceptance rate was in the low 20s, I expect it to be in the mid teens. It is an excellent school so I am not at all surprised.

What top school hasn’t seen a record number of applications?

Thank you, Common App.

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^agree - I know kids who applied to schools they never had any intention of attending.

The Common App has been around long enough that it probably doesn’t account for much of the 33% increase in applications that Hamilton has seen this year vs. last year. A better metric to look at would be what have Hamilton’s peer schools seen this application season. I haven’t seen any of those numbers, but they would help show whether or not this large an increase is something limited to a small number of schools.

Why would anyone apply to a school that they never had any intention of attending? Bragging rights? This practice defies common sense.

Agree with @BelknapPoint, this growth is not due to common app…it’s been around since 1975, online since 1998.

Only directly comparable Class of 2023 data from Hamilton peer schools so far is Bowdoin, where total apps are up a couple of % (Bowdoin had big growth in the prior 2 years tho). Several peer schools have release ED only data–Williams is down 8%, Amherst up 9%, Middlebury up .5% (those numbers are from a WaPo article dated 1/5/19).

Will be interesting to see final tallies, but it seems the efforts Hamilton made as highlighted in the article have certainly contributed to this increase in apps

Re #6, nearby Colgate posted a 2.5% increase in applications: http://news.colgate.edu/2019/01/colgate-receives-record-number-of-applications.html/.

There is no question that applications are rising for the elite schools, but they typically increase somewhere in the ballpark of 2 - 6%. A 34% increase is by no means the norm.

The Spectator covered the increase and includes a few comments of interest:

WOW! That’s a huge increase. Thanks for sharing that article, @apple23.

We toured Hamilton in the summer and I thought their marketing materials were particularly on point, especially for students who are interested in open curriculum colleges. Three clear slogans/statements:

Study What You Love

Be Who You Are

Find Your Future

I am not sure whether my daughter (a current junior) will apply to Hamilton, but the messaging really spoke to me and I think will speak to many young people who are interested in charting their own paths. Great college and I wish Hamilton all the best!

@BookLvr My son is a soph at Hamilton, and I am happy to say those slogans are pretty reflective of what actually happens at Hamilton. I also have a junior HS student looking at schools, and she isn’t sure Hamilton is on her list, but I would be very pleased if she considered it. Good luck in your search process!

DD is a Sophmore at Hamilton, loves the school!!! Great kids, great Profs, and rigorous academics. if you get in, go visit at least, you won’t regret it.

Hamilton did not have a supplemental essay this year. They must have been gaming it to increase the number of applications. Seniors need to know that no essay prompt is a reason to pause not get excited.

They “must have been gaming it”? You are sure there is no other reasonable explanation as to why Hamilton did not require a supplemental essay for the application season that is coming to a close?

Gaming what? USNews does not use application numbers or selectivity in their methodology, nor does WSJ

Hamilton did indeed have a supplemental essay question this year.

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They had a SECRET supplemental (“optional”) that popped up after you submitted the application. My son thought it was a really mean trick ?