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Incoming freshman class ‘smartest’ again

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Ohio State’s freshman class is the most intelligent class ever to attend OSU, according to various measures used in the university’s enrollment process.

The entering class has the highest average ACT score OSU has ever had, according the Office of Enrollment Services. In 2006, the average score was 26.4. This year, the average was 28, according to the OES.

The average SAT score has also risen. This year’s freshmen averaged 1240 on the SAT’s 1600-point scale, which does not include the writing score factored into the 2400-point scale, according to the OES. Comparatively, the average score was 1200 in 2006, according to the OES.

“We have enrolled the most talented, academically prepared and diverse new student class in the history of the university,” Dolan Evanovich, vice president for Strategic Enrollment Planning, said in an email.

Fifty-five percent of the freshman class ranked in the top 10 percent of their high school classes, compared to 44 percent in 2006.

Evanovich attributes the higher test scores and class rankings to high school students’ rising interests in the university.

“Increasingly, bright high school students are aware of the wonderful things happening at Ohio State and are applying for admissions in record numbers,” he said in the email.

The increased number of applicants allows the Office of Enrollment Services to be more selective when choosing which students to accept, he said.

Sixty-three percent of applicants were accepted to OSU, compared to 68 percent for Autumn 2010, he said.

Jo Hirlinger, a first-year in international business, said she was drawn to OSU because of its urban location and international business program, although it was not her first-choice university.

Hirlinger was in the top 10 percent of her graduating class and said she prepared for her college career throughout high school.

“I took all the business classes that were offered and I took two foreign languages,” she said. “I traveled a little bit to get my feet wet.”

Hirlinger is in the scholars program for international affairs.

Evan Luse, a first-year in health science, was also in the top 10 percent of his graduating class.

After Luse was accepted into the honors program at OSU, he said he looked forward to taking classes with a small number of students while still getting to experience the large-campus atmosphere.

“Ohio State offered me everything in one place,” he said.

His class ranking and ACT score, 30, placed Luse above the average applicant.

“I thought I would probably get in. I fit in pretty well into the average accepted student from the year before,” he said. “I was still nervous about the whole process.”

Bobby Sherman, a first-year in actuarial science, did not apply to any school other than OSU.

“It’s really the only college I’ve ever thought about since I was a little kid. I’ve always been a fan (of the Buckeyes),” he said. “Then in high school I realized it had good academics.”

Sherman was the salutatorian of his graduating class and entered his first year of college with 25 credit hours from AP courses he took in high school.

Evanovich looks to the future of this new accomplished freshman class.

“Our focus beyond that is to help them develop their talents and do great things during their college years and beyond,” he said.

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