Schreyer Honors College announces acceptances for the Class of 2020

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State's nationally ranked Schreyer Honors College announced its acceptances March 9 for the Class of 2020 from a record 3,930 applications received for the incoming freshman class, an increase of 6 percent from the previous year. The accepted Schreyer Honors College Class of 2020 includes 28 international applicants and represents 37 different states.

Fifty-six percent of students offered admission were Pennsylvania residents, while the states of New York, New Jersey, Maryland and Virginia provided the largest numbers of out-of-state applicants. The admittance rate for the Class of 2020 was 18.8 percent.

“The great news for Schreyer Honors College and Penn State is that each year our applicant pool grows increasingly more competitive,” said Schreyer Honors College Associate Dean Michele “Mitch” Kirsch. “The difficult part begins when we have to select an entering class from so many applicants who possess exceptional credentials. This Class of 2020 is a result of the collaborative effort of our staff, more than 180 faculty readers, and more than 300 alumni interviewers around the world who committed to helping us identify the leaders of tomorrow. We look forward to welcoming the Schreyer Honors College Class of 2020 to campus this August.”

Schreyer Honors College was established in 1997 by alumnus and former Merrill Lynch CEO William Schreyer with one of the largest gifts in Penn State history. In addition to completing an exemplary application for admission to Penn State, prospective Scholars are required to submit answers to three essay questions, provide information on leadership experiences and academic honors, and have recommendations from two teachers. Nearly 2,700 prospective Scholars, more than half of the applicants, opted to participate in an interview session with Scholar alumni volunteers as part of their admissions process. A committee reviews applications and helps determine the class composition for each academic year.

Throughout the history of the Schreyer Honors College, Scholars have been recognized for major accomplishments with prestigious awards, scholarships and fellowships. Scholar Ramya Gurunathan became only the second Penn Stater to win a Churchill Scholarship since its inception in 1963. Ryan Henrici is currently studying in the United Kingdom after his selection as a Marshall Scholar. Seven Scholar alumni were recipients of National Science Foundation awards last May and Fulbright Program Scholarships were awarded to three Scholar alumni earlier this year. Scholar and Empower Orphans founder Neha Gupta became the first American to win the International Children’s Peace Prize and accepted the award from Nobel Peace Prize winners Desmond Tutu and Malala Yousafzai.

“It is always difficult to turn away strong students,” Kirsch said. “We hope those who did not receive an offer will still consider coming to Penn State and applying to the SHC via our Gateway process for continuing students.”

Schreyer Honors College promotes academic excellence with integrity, the building of a global perspective and creation of opportunities for leadership and civic engagement. Schreyer Honors Scholars, including Gateway Scholars admitted after their first year of enrollment, total more than 1,900 students at University Park and 20 Commonwealth campuses. They represent the top 2 percent of students at Penn State who excel academically and lead on campus.

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Last Updated March 10, 2016