Home » Academic Life » Class of 2016 Regular Decisions Mailed Today

Class of 2016 Regular Decisions Mailed Today


Posted by on Friday, March 23, 2012

On Wednesday, while passing briskly through the APC, I was stopped in my tracks by the sight of something awe-inspiring: Tables upon tables of USPS mail bins holding decisions for the remainder of those who applied to be a part of the Class of 2016. It’s not the literal vision of bulk mail that gave me pause, of course, but the stories behind this mountain of paper which have gripped this office for the past year – stories that have humbled us and made us laugh, and impressed us beyond our collective imagination.

Those letters are gone now, traversing highways and airstreams on their way to our Regular Decision applicants. But what lingers (and what will linger) are the memories earned through an intense year of domestic and international travel; daily information sessions and campus tours; admissions committees; programs like Vandy Fan for a Day, Black and Gold Days and PreVU (among many others); and the daily interactions we’ve had with you over email, telephone, this blog, and in person – in some cases for several years now.

We could go on and on about how immensely this admissions cycle has affected us, but it’s high time we flip the mirror around on you, who comprise the most academically competitive and diverse applicant pool in our institution’s history. This pool was also our largest: Vanderbilt received a record total of 28,340 applications (EDI, EDII and Regular) compared to 24,837 last year – a full 14.1% increase on top of last year’s 13.9% increase. And yet the quality of each application was in no way diluted by the escalation.

A well-deserved round of applause for our newest Commodores! (Photo by John Russell)

In fact, it’s worth stating again that this year’s Regular Decision class has the highest academic profile in Vanderbilt’s history. Moreover, this group showcased a level of engagement and leadership in their high schools and in state, regional, national, and international organizations that is unsurpassed. Of the 3,062 admitted Regular Decision students, 2,935 (96%) received one or more significant honors or held major leadership positions while in high school. Specifically, there are 1,061 students who held such major student leadership positions as President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, or Founder of an organization.

Additionally, there are 943 students who were Athletic Team Captains or Co-Captains, who placed in district, national, or international level championships, or were named MVP of their respective sports teams. There were also 737 students who distinguished themselves in the fine arts, holding lead roles in theatre productions, achieving state level musical awards, or serving as Youth Symphony Concertmasters or Drum Majors. Finally, 2,079 (68%) students received the highest level of honor, such as Eagle Scout, Girl Scout Gold Award, AP Scholar, or have been inducted into honorary societies such as the National Honor Society, National Beta Club, or Key Club. This is an extraordinary group of future leaders by any measure.

Below are a few academic highlights of the students admitted through Regular Decision. Please note that we don’t publish this data as a means of indicating certain cut-offs and requirements. Our admissions process continues to be completely holistic, which means that – in addition to certain key academic indicators – many qualitative factors are also considered in each admissions decision. The stats above regarding applicant engagement are indicative of this all-encompassing approach.

  • Middle 50% SAT (CR + M): 1470 – 1590
  • Middle 50% ACT: 33 – 35
  • Percentage of students in the top ten percent of their graduating class: 96.35%*
  • Average rank in class (% from the top): 2.77%*
  • Regular decision admit rate (as of mailing day): 12.02%

*Data reported only for students enrolled in schools that provide exact rank in class information

As you can see, the stakes were as high as they’ve ever been. And, while this is very exciting for a number of reasons, it also means that we were unable to offer admission to many extremely qualified applicants. In fact, a large proportion of you are likely capable of performing academic work at Vanderbilt’s level and would make an excellent “fit” within our student body, which is just one of the many reasons these decisions are so difficult to make. However, as we state on our site, we are committed to enrolling a first-year class of 1,600 students to maintain Vanderbilt’s close-knit community, so it’s necessary that we do make those tough decisions. Regardless, we are confident that all of you will enjoy a very successful and meaningful college career no matter where you land.

If you were offered a spot on our wait list, please go ahead and submit the online wait list form. Though the list is not ranked in any way, your continued participation will help us shape the remainder of the Class of 2016 over the next several weeks. If you’re an international student, you should receive your decision via email on Monday, March 26.

Again, congratulations to the newest Commodores! From all of us in the OUA, we are so proud that you’re now part of the Commodore family and look forward to welcoming you to campus in the coming months. Until then, please contact us with any questions – or just to tell us how happy you are. We’d love to celebrate with you.

Our "stripping party" winds down as letters are packed and made ready for the mail truck. (John Russell)

Stay tuned for more information regarding the Class of 2016!


Posted in Academic Life, Admissions Committee, VU Admissions Statistics and tagged: , , , , , , ,


  • Guest

    Top 10 people or top 10%? 

  • Sara

    Can’t wait to see everyone who got in RD! I’ve been waiting since EDI to find out who else will be joining the class of 2016! Congrats to everyone gets in (and I can’t wait to finally get my information packet!)

  • Wow!

    So your ACT middle 50% range is now 33-35, up from 30-34 last year? Then 25% of your applicants scored a perfect 36? Wow! Interesting since Harvard’s incoming freshman class last year had a mid range of 31-34. Yale and Stanford were 30-34. If in fact your class is the best in the country, congratulations.

    • Re: wow

        Doesn’t necessarily mean that. For instance, the top 25% could have all
      gotten 35’s as well. Surely several were 36’s, but certainly not all of
      the top 25% got 36’s. Still, some remarkable statistics. I think this
      shows that Vandy’s students’ performance merits Vandy being in the
      discussion with Harvard, Stanford, etc. as a top 5 academic institution
      in many respects.

  • Guest

    This is admitted student information…the ranges will likely drop when we talk about matriculated student information. Why? Because some of those students with high standardized test scores will matriculate elsewhere.

  • Chandani

    Sooo nervous! wishing and hoping for the best(fingers crossed)!!! Congradulations to everyone who got in :D and i’m hoping I will be joining the Vandy class of 2016

  • wiscoo

    How long do you think it will take for the packets to get to the midwest? I’m from Wisconsin.

  • Rogers Lanerica

    How did you all admitt over 3,000 RD applicants but only want 1600 in the class?

    • We are aware that some in our admitted class will choose to attend college elsewhere.

      • Nicholas Carlson

        hypothetically, if all 3000 decide to choose Vandy then will the class incorporate all these students?

        • While we do prepare for all eventualities, the hypothetical situation you describe has never happened and we don’t anticipate it happening this year either.

  • Acwplayer

    25% of the class had a 1600 in Math and reading?  I don’t think that’s possible.

    • Confused

      I agree these numbers seem a little high. Much higher than the entering freshman classes the past few years at any other college including Ivy league schools.

      • Nzolman

        The 25% has 1590-1600. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a 1600.

        • Anonymous

          OK, so 25% of admitted students had a 1590 or 1600?  Still seems highly improbable.

    • TC ’73

       I wonder why so many colleges still ignore the Writing section?

  • taxedtoomuch

    ADMITTED students had those stats. Obviously,many will also get into Harvard/Yale/princeton…..etc etc, and enroll there. So, students actually ENTERING Vanderbilt may have a slightly lower profile. But many VU students are the equal of any student, anywhere!!! That is so obvious. Vanderbilt is one of the hottest schools in the country now.

  • agwin27

    I understand that there is not technically “one big waiting list,” but several specialized waiting lists. What factors/characteristics incline the OUA to call one applicant over another? 

    • Offers of admission from the Wait List are made based on many different criteria, including the students’ academic strengths, level of involvement and leadership, and school-specific needs. This is also the one time in which demonstrated interest plays a role – should you be added, make sure you submit the online Wait List Response Form by May 1 to officially accept your spot on the Wait List, and continue to any emails you receive from us after that to indicate you are still interested in Vanderbilt.

      • Cij1

        Regarding the waitlist – Do you accept supplemental recs (from ECs and/or a senior year teacher) to be submitted from those waitlisted?

        • Carolyn Pippen

          Students on the Wait List are welcome to submit additional items (new academic information, acquired involvement or leadership positions, supplementary recommendation letters, etc) if they feel these items will add to the original application in a significant way and/or provide a new perspective on the file. 

      • Susan Yeyeodu

        Expectant prospective wait-listed daugher out of town on sr. trip for a few more days. Will waiting those few days before demonstrating interest and providing supplemental info make a difference in her chances for acceptance or will you simply gather everything you receive by May 1 and revisit?

        • While we do encourage students to demonstrate interest by filling out the online wait list form as soon as possible, waiting a few days to do so will not affect your daughter’s chances of being admitted. What’s most important is that your daughter continues to answer in the affirmative when contacted by our office to inquire about her interest in staying on the wait list after the May 1 deadline. This interest is telegraphed via the online form and may be required more than once throughout this process.

  • Ronjaworski

    What a great time, I remember last year when my granddaughter was waiting for this- and the joy when she was accepted- Vanderbilt is a great school- those who choose to accept will have the experience of a life time- enjoy the moment- it goes by so fast- Hooray for the class of 2016!

  • guest

    Why does the knowledge that the letters have been mailed make me so much more nervous and anxious than I was when I didn’t know they had been mailed? How am I supposed to make it through the weekend or week if my mail is slow? Congratulations to everyone who got in! 

  • Xaq404

    Will be any acceptance emails sent out, or will this all be via snail mail?

    • Domestic students will receive decisions via physical mail. International students will receive decisions via email.

      • Xaq404

        Thanks for the info!

  • anxious

    Damn, those are some impressive statistics…. So if I have a 33 ACT and 2200 SAT, I can pretty much kiss my chances goodbye, huh?

  • Gio Ugut

    What time will international students receive their email?

    • It’s hard to say for certain what exact time each student will receive their email, but I can assure you that international decisions are being emailed today.

  • Sarah

    I’m going home to my letter in about an hour!! I’m SO nervous! Congratulations to all the admitted students of the class of 2016. I hope I’m going to be joining you! Wish me luck!

  • Guest

    Has anyone in west tennessee gotten their acceptance letter yet?  I was just wondering when I can expect it.  I am getting nervoours.  Surely I got accepted at Vandy.  I got accepted at Wash U and Emory. 

  • Guest

    Mine came and I was Denied !!!! I guess all mt Vandy gear can be donated to a clothing charity. I don’t ever want to look at it again. All my life’s dreams have just been murdered.

  • Dillonmsandhu

    Were acceptances sent priority and rejections sent through regular mail?

    • Yes, admitted students were mailed decisions via priority mail (and email in the case of international students) and waitlisted/denied student were sent decisions via first class mail (and, again, via email in the case of international students).

      • Diana1882

        So basically if your letter hasn’t arrived by now you didn’t get in. Because priory mail comes before first class mail. The applicant who asked this specific question is obviously very astute to discern the difference in the mail.

        • Hi Diana. It isn’t always the case that the length of time determines admittance or not – sometimes mail simply doesn’t arrive, which is out of our control. That’s why we have a policy of releasing decisions over the phone beginning one week after mailing day. It is certainly not our intention to keep anyone in the dark regarding their decision.

          • Susan424

            Even though all letters go out the same day the letters can take days to arrive even when sent to the same zip code. My daughter’s came 2 days after two others in her class received theirs…..same zip code. Those were two excrutiating days for her and all assumed that she was not admitted. (She was admitted, by the way and could not be happier with her choice of schools.) Has anyone yet figured out a more humane way to inform students of their stance?

          • Thanks and congratulations to your daughter, Susan. While I can’t speak to how we’ll inform students in the future, I do want you to know that we appreciate your patience during such a nerve-wracking time. I can certainly understand how the situation you described would be frustrating. As I said, to some extent the delivery dates are out of our control. Regardless, congratulations again and we look forward to welcoming your daughter into the Commodore family.

        • Dillonmsandhu

          Diana, I was worried too, but I guess my alleged astuteness paid off, because I was accepted today!

        • Diana1882

          Congrats to Dilion! Thanks Ryan

  • Patrick

    Uhm…everyone at my school except me got their acceptance letters today. Are all the letters, including rejection and acceptance, shipped at the same time? I’m afraid I just found out my acceptance status without the school even telling me.

    • All decisions for domestic students were mailed this past Friday.

  • Guest

    So it’s Monday and I did not receive a packet or email. Does this mean I’m not accepted? How are waitlist notification communicated? Thanks

    • Wait list notifications were sent on the same day (last Friday) as all other domestic decisions. International decisions were sent via email on Monday of this week.

  • Draculac

    Is is possible for applicants to see any advice from AO for the ones who got waitlisted?

    • Could you be more specific regarding what you mean by AO?

  • Draculac

    Anywhere can students who got waitlisted see any advice from AO?

  • Guest

    Does the candidate receive a wait list or rejection letter by mail also? Were those communications mailed at the same time as the acceptance letters?

    • Yes, all decision letters for domestic students were mailed on Friday.

  • Alumni

    You should see the trand for the last decade, student scores are sky-rocketing! and Acceptance is plummeting. Kudos to those students improving the over all caliber of the school populace.

  • Anonymous

    Some brief advice to admitted students:  If you are accepted at both Vanderbilt and an Ivy, and you consider the US News rankings as a decision criteria, please do this before making your decision.  Read how the rankings are made.  Does it matter to you if there are only 6 other students in your class instead of 16?  Isn’t it possible that 16 classmates would be better?  If your school is ranked #1, you can naturally expect more students to apply, which makes your acceptance numbers even more scant, perpetuating your high rating.

    Now consider the criteria that aren’t included in ratings, and really can’t be because they are subjective.  How does location effect your quality of life?  Do you like being part of a student body going nuts for nationally ranked school teams?  Faculty attitude will substantially define your learning environment, so were the faculty members you personally met both warm and encouraging, or were they distant and challenging?

    I’m way beyond college years, so what I consider important may be very different than you.  But my kids have all gone to the ‘best’ schools, including one at Vanderbilt.  I’m telling you quite seriously, there is no better school.

  • mussled

    Everyone at my daughter’s school has received their letter, good or bad, except my daughter.  I am concerned it got lost.  What should I do?

    • We will begin releasing decisions over the phone on Friday, March 30th. Please give us a call if you haven’t received the decision by then.

  • guest

    Those really are amazing statistics, and congratulations to everyone who was accepted! Just curious. I haven’t received my decision letter, and am just wondering if they all went out the same day? A friend of mine received hers yesterday, but nothing for me in the mail yesterday and today, and we live near each other.

    • Decisions did all go out the same day. Please give us a call on or after March 30th if you haven’t received yours by then.

  • Guest

    I still not have received anything in Texas regarding my admission decision.  At what point can we call to inquire about our status? 

    • We will begin releasing decisions over the phone beginning Friday, March 30th.

  • Grace

    I still haven’t received any word but everyone at my school who applied regular admission has gotten their letters… is there any other way I can check my admission decision? Like a phone number perhaps?

  • Dklei01

    My son has not received an admission decision yet.  What do you suggest we do?

    • We will begin releasing decisions over the phone beginning Friday, March 30. You are welcome to call us then if your son has still not received his decision.

  • Guest Hopefully Future ‘Dore

    I have been accepted RD, but I am in a dilemna. I received a suitable financial aid package to go with my acceptance, but I live in Williamson County. That being said, I live in Brentwood, literally 15-20 minutes from Vanderbilt’s college campus. My main incentive to having Vandy as my top choice was to be able to college from my house and live their through my college years. My parents also really would like this and it would be financially easier for our family but our primary reason for wanting to stay home is so that I can remain close to my family. I know the rules say that you must be in Davidson county, but considering that I’m closer to Vandy than many Davidson County people and that my neighborhood is halfway in Davidson county (the rest is Brentwood), what are my chances of being permitted to live at home for all of my college years if I decide to attend Vandy under the “special cases” section of the housing policy. 

    • Congrats on your admittance and thank you for being patient for a response during an incredibly busy time for our office.

      Our office doesn’t make housing decisions, but I’ve contacted the Housing office and will follow-up with any insight as soon as I hear back. Please let me know if you have any questions in the meantime.

    • OK, I’ve heard back from the Housing Office. It appears that there isn’t much flexibility on this issue – the policy you referred to in the Student Handbook offers the definitive answer.

      However, I would really encourage you not to let this be a hindrance to your attending Vanderbilt. Having lived on and off campus during my own time in college (I attended another university in Nashville), I can tell you that the time I spent ON campus was far more enjoyable and beneficial to my growth during these key years of life. The Ingram Commons experience is such an amazing way to make friends and build a support group, which will be so crucial while at college for so many reasons.

      Please let me know if you’d like me to put you in touch with a student who’s lived the first-year Commons experience — or even one who’s living it right now!

    • Leah

      Future ‘Dore,

      I had a girl that lived in my freshman dorm who was also from Brentwood. She ended up becoming one of my best friends and we still see each other regularly even 16 years after graduation. Even though she lived on campus, she did get to see a lot of her family. I got to visit her house several times, which as a homesick freshman I really appreciated. Nothing can beat doing laundry and getting a home cooked meal every once in a while. But her living on campus allowed her to make friends that are lasting a lifetime. She was so much more plugged into her college experience for all four years by being closer to everything and everyone. I imagine you are disappointed, and I am glad that the University is strict on this one. I think it helps to build a strong community, which is so important to the overall experience of college.

  • This is wonderful!
    Can’t wait to meet you Class of 2016

  • Victoria

    Cool my sister’s envelope could be somewhere in there!

  • Jo Mi

    Congratulations to all who were accepted.  I was not.  1490 SAT (2220 3 parts), 3.98 GPA, tied for salutatorian.  Really wanted to go here but I guess it was not meant to be.  Go Commodores!

    Western NY girl

  • Cavinodrawal

    how many indians are there on VU.

  • Vandy1998

    They still wont be as smart as the Class of 1998

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