Cooper Union Releases Figures for 2014 Admitted Students

POSTED ON: April 4, 2014

The Cooper Union has admitted 373 first year students to the class that will enter in the fall. These include 69 students in art, 28 in architecture, and 276 in engineering. The admitted cohort appears fully comparable in its talents and accomplishments to earlier classes, according to staff and faculty who have reviewed application materials.

In engineering, students’ mean grade point averages held steady at 95.2, SAT 1 scores rose about 24 points and ACT composite scores rose about one full point from 32.1 to 33.1 in comparison to the class admitted in 2013. SAT II scores rose in physics from 745 to 751, dipped in chemistry from 760 to 748, and were about the same in mathematics, at 768. In art and architecture, where qualifications are judged largely on the quality of submitted materials, including home tests, faculty and staff assessments were strong overall, according to Dean of Admission Mitchell Lipton.

Perhaps a more meaningful indicator of The Cooper Union’s continued attractiveness to the most talented students: all of the 61 art and engineering students admitted via early decision have chosen to attend.

“For us, the important result is that The Cooper Union continues to attract some of the most talented and accomplished students in the world,” said Lipton. “The quality of the applications overall suggests continued confidence in the strength of the programs we offer. I think we can feel optimistic about our ability to continue to attract students who can succeed in this demanding academic environment.”

The number of applications overall dropped this year, as had been anticipated. The 2,537 received represents a drop of 20.5 percent from last year’s 3,193.

The loss in total applications and an increase in the number of students admitted together increased the rate of admissions from 7.7 percent last year to 14.4 percent this year. By this measure, The Cooper Union’s apparent selectivity continues to rank among the most competitive nationally, comparable to such schools as Swarthmore, Amherst, Duke, and the University of Chicago.

While selectivity can be one indicator of a school’s prestige, Lipton cautions that it is not in itself a goal of the admissions process. “We have never looked to produce inflated numbers of applications,” he said. “To the contrary, we often discourage prospective students we know cannot succeed here from applying so that they can instead focus their efforts on colleges that may better fit their academic needs.”

Students have until May 1 to respond to the offer of admission. The class was admitted based solely on merit; admitted students have been given student aid awards to address financial need over and above the half-tuition scholarship, according to federal guidelines for judging need based on the FAFSA and the CSS Profile. Summary data about the incoming class, including financial aid awarded, will be available after May 1.

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.