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Penn's Class of 2022: By the Numbers


Photo Courtesy of the Admissions Office

This year, Penn received a startling 44,482 applicants for the Class of 2022, of which, only slightly over 3,000 were admitted.

This increase of almost 5,000 applicants has pushed Penn’s acceptance rate down to a record-breaking “not as low as Harvard’s.”

According to Dean of Admissions Eric Furda, Penn had the most qualified candidates in the school's history, making this year’s application cycle even more competitive. In an interview with UTB, Furda lauded the geographic diversity of Penn’s incoming class, noting that “we got at least one from most of the middle states!”

Admitted students to the Class of 2022 participated in a diverse and unique set of activities. According to admissions statistics, 20% participated in debate in high school, 40% participated in debate* in high school, 19% participated in a Jewish youth group, and 4% did “community service, but really it should just be called ‘meeting new friends' – honestly, the fifth graders at the YMCA in Chicago taught me way more than I could ever teach them.”

When it came to the "Why Penn?" essay, applicants put their hearts on their sleeves, writing deeply personal pieces about why they belonged at Penn. Some highlights from the essays of the Class of 2022 include, “How Bernie Sanders Personally Changed my Life, but Why I Want a Consulting Job Through Wharton,” “I Listened to Hoodie Allen and Want Penn to Jumpstart My Rap Career,” and “My Mom Went Here.”

“In my 'Why Penn?' essay titled ‘My Mom Went Here,’ I wanted to capture why I fell in love with this school the instant I got to campus,” said Natalie Jones, a newly admitted Quaker to the Class of 2022. “I just felt like focusing on the fact that my mom went here would help admissions really understand, from my perspective, why I belong at this university.”

Natalie noted that her true "Why Penn?" reason was that it was “pretty good in US News and World Reports rankings,” but decided an essay about her mom would be more impactful.

Although the admitted Class of 2022 is a talented group, a shocking 0% of the class is related to Joe Biden, a statistic Dean Furda described as “sad.”

In terms of SAT scores, 23% of admitted students achieved between 1350-1450, and 50% achieved between 1450-1550. The final 27% of the class of 2022 achieved between 1550-1600 and would love to compare scores with you.

*Model UN