Bowdoin College Enrolls an Entering Class That Is 14.3 Percent Black

Last week, JBHE published its annual survey of Black first-year students at the nation’s highest-ranked liberal arts colleges. We had solicited information from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, but our communications never reached the proper officials at the college.

We are glad to report that we have now received the data from this prestigious college. Bowdoin reports that 724 Black students applied to the college for this year’s entering class. Of those, 149 were accepted, producing a Black student acceptance rate of 20.6 percent. The overall acceptance rate at Bowdoin for this year’s entering class was 13.6 percent.

Of the 149 Black students who were accepted to Bowdoin, 72 enrolled. This produced a Black student yield of 48.3 percent.

There are 501 students in the current first-year class at Bowdoin. The 72 Black students make up 14.3 percent of the first-year class. This ranks Bowdoin second in this year’s survey.

A Bowdoin spokesperson told JBHE that “diverse perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences are essential components of a liberal arts education. So, we have broadened our recruitment efforts to different areas of the country. We have also eliminated a barrier for some students by doing away with our application fee for those applying for financial aid and for first-generation college students.”


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