The University of Oregon’s entering class of students for fall 2021 has arrived on campus and with the new year comes new records. This is the university’s most diverse and academically prepared class in the UO’s history. They represent diversity not only in their racial identities, but their socioeconomic and geographic identities as well.
“This year’s incoming class is the largest in the history of the University of Oregon and they represent the ideals and vision of the UO—reflecting our emphasis on building a diverse environment where all students can thrive,” said Roger Thompson, vice president for Student Services and Enrollment Management. “We are so proud to continue growing our student body and by offering world-class research and global opportunities, we will ensure our incoming class has the best programs, services and resources that this university has to offer.”
Making the Class of 2025
All New Undergraduates:
UO Freshmen By the Numbers:
+1.36% vs 2020
Class of 2025
Hometown: Brookings, OR
Major: Art and Technology
Minor: Ethnic Studies
“What set the UO apart from other colleges was community. I felt a sense of reassurance that I would succeed and be supported if I attended UO. It also has a vibrant art community, with many niches and talented artists that drew me towards the college.”
Natalie Garcia is a first-year student and PathwayOregon scholar from Brookings, Oregon, studying art and technology, and minoring in ethnic studies and comics studies. As an aspiring artist, Natalie hopes that her education at the UO will help her toward her dream of becoming the author of her very own graphic novel. Now on campus, Natalie hopes to become more involved with the art community by joining clubs such as Art Ducko and other campus publications.
Diversity continues to grow with newest incoming class
As national trends toward diversity in higher education progress, the university’s commitment to the recruitment and retention of diverse students has stayed at the forefront, as displayed by the accomplishments of this year’s incoming class.
A decade ago, the university had a very different racial/ethnic makeup than what it is today. In 2011, the university reported 24% of domestic minority students, compared to 36% for the most recent incoming fresman class—a growth of 12%.
Seeing the UO’s growth in this category over the last 10 years only highlights the recruitment efforts and commitment the UO team has made to improve our access to higher education.
“Recruiting a diverse student body is part of the contract that higher education has with society,” said Yvette M. Alex-Assensoh, vice president for Equity and Inclusion. “Indeed, in creating equitable achievement pathways for students from diverse backgrounds—with a particular focus on groups that have been historically oppressed and marginalized—the UO is doing its part to create a more just society.”
As societal acceptance and understanding of diversity continues, the university hopes to lead and support those changes in the campus community. Whether in the classroom or community, the commitment to expanding the diversity of students at the UO is an ongoing one that will only grow as the university does.
Class of 2025
Hometown: Jammu, India
“The University of Oregon gave me the opportunity to discover more about the field of architecture as it has one of the top 20 programs in the US. I wanted to come out of my hometown, my comfort zone, and become an independent young woman. I think the UO will be a place where I’ll learn not only about my career but basic life lessons.”
1,646 domestic minority students, up from 1,351 last year.
Top of their Class
With an average GPA of 3.73, the Class of 2025 breaks the record for the most academically prepared incoming class. The UO is excited to help these high achievers exceed their academic and professional goals.
“This is such a remarkable year for so many reasons, but I am especially pleased to say we have welcomed our largest class and most academically prepared students in the University of Oregon’s history,” said Patrick Phillips, provost and senior vice president.
As these bright minds continue their education, the university is ready to keep them on a continuous trajectory of academic excellence. The UO is a top-tier research university with advanced programs and resources for students, including the Clark Honors College (CHC). The CHC is a community of scholars that provides hands-on, advanced courses taught by award-winning faculty and is a great option for curious students ready to engage with the academic experience. Students can learn beyond the classroom, delve into the subjects they’re passionate about and gain career experience.
“My team has been energized to be in person as we connect our new Ducks to so many incredible research opportunities along a variety of academic paths, contributing to a rich UO experience for which our students can continue to achieve success,” said Kimberly Johnson, vice provost for Undergraduate Education and Student Success. “There has been an increase in students finding their academic home at Clark Honors College as well, where they can explore their passion for discovering new knowledge.”
The Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program encourages students to explore their academic and professional goals while developing important critical thinking and workforce skills. From psychology to earth sciences, chemistry to history, students can research topics of interest and add to their paths of discovery. This has been a major factor in recruiting. Students cite academic opportunity, among other factors, as a reason they selected the University of Oregon.
“Our Center for Undergraduate Research and Engagement offers students many opportunities to engage in outstanding research. At the University of Oregon, we are committed to enriching the undergraduate experience by enhancing student access and success for a truly transformative experience,” Johnson said.
Expert faculty members are the glue to everything. The UO faculty, both in and outside of the university’s advanced undergraduate programs, are dedicated to helping all students achieve success.
“The University of Oregon works at the cutting edge of transformative research and innovation that can have profound impacts on our community and beyond,” Phillips said. “One of the great benefits of being a student at a research university is the opportunity to participate in this work, and our Ducks are important contributors—essential for advancing the research that is such a central part of our university identity, our mission, and our obligation to the world."
The academically prepared incoming class is ensured to progress and accomplish extraordinary things, and the UO looks forward to welcoming an increasingly diverse class of academically excellent students in the many terms to come.