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2002-03 School Year Officially Underway

August 21, 2002

President Welcomes New Students

August 21, 2002, Greencastle, Ind. - Sunny skies and warm temperatures greeted DePauw University students as they walked to their first classes of the new school year this morning. Final enrollment figures are still being compiled, but it appears the University enters the 2002-03 school year with nearly 2,300 students, compared with 2,225 a year ago. The increase is attributed to the large incoming class of 700, and a higher student retention rate is another likely factor but cannot be quantified until a final analysis has been made.

DePauw, rated in the top tier of national liberal arts colleges by U.S. News & World Report for two consecutive years, and named the second "best value" by the magazine (read more here), enjoyed another a record admission year that saw the largest number of applications to DePauw in history and the lowest percentage of admitted applicants. The new students come from 35 states and 8 countries, and bring with them the strongest academic credentials since the University began keeping such records. The median (unweighted) high school grade point average of the entering class is 3.74 (up .10 from last fall), the median class rank is 91% (up 1%), and 73 were valedictorians or salutatorians in high school (up from 41).

DePauw is welcoming 33 new full-time faculty members, bringing the total to 221. Audio Link[DOWNLOAD AUDIO: "Faculty Expansion" 249KB] "This completes a four-year expansion of the faculty, designed to maintain the diversity of the curricular offerings and to expand the offerings to include the 50 first-year seminars, without sacrificing the courses for the various majors and programs," reports vice president for academic affairs and Dean of the Faculty Neal Abraham. DePauw's faculty-student ratio is one-to-ten with an average class size of 17.

Construction crews spent the summer readying new academic buildings and living units for opening day. The new wing of the Julian Science and Mathematics Center is now open as workers continue renovating the original portion of the building. Just behind Julian, DePauw's new art building has opened. And DePauw's academic quad has a new look and a name. The Holton Memorial Quad features new landscaping, a new outdoor classroom in the center entrance to Asbury Hall, and an outdoor patio area that will adjoin Roy O. West library, which itself received a new facade a year ago. The revitalized quad honors Ruth Clark and Philip Forbes Holton, both members of the Class of 1929, who left DePauw University a gift of $128 million. Received in 1999, the gift marked the largest-ever received by a liberal arts college and was used to create the Holton Memorial Fund, which provides scholarships to students of "high character and with academic and leadership potential."

Seventy-two upperclass students are living in nine new duplexes, which were built over the summer behind Roy O. West library. Due to the large incoming class, Anderson Hall now houses first-year students, and the University has created additional freshman rooms in Bishop Roberts, Mason and Lucy Rowland Halls. DePauw is also leasing the Little Rock Apartments this year, to provide an additional housing option after the April 7 fire at Rector Hall, which will be renovated once the insurance company returns the building to the University.

"It's been a busy summer, one that's seen great change to the campus," says DePauw President Robert G. Bottoms. "It required a lot of hard work by many men and women to get the projects ready, and the result of their toils is quite impressive. Today, we begin the University's most important work -- the nurturing of young minds -- in facilities that are second-to-none. And it's fitting that students walk through the Holton Quad as they make their way to class," Dr. Bottoms adds. "The generosity of the Holtons has allowed DePauw to attract the best students in its history and become a University of national prominence. There is much to celebrate as we begin this new academic year."

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