Grove City College welcomes the Class of 2021 today as 638 freshmen arrive on the campus of one of America’s best Christian liberal arts and sciences colleges.
The freshman class is the largest since 2014, but the greater story may be a dramatic increase in the number of applications the College saw in 2017. The 1,780 applicants represented a 22-percent increase from 2012, which indicates a growing demand for the Christ-centered approach to living and learning that Grove City College provides.
The incoming group of Grovers is academically excellent, with an average SAT score of 1231, nearly 200 points above the national average and in the top 25 percent nationally, and an average ACT score of 27, more than 7 points above the national average.
They come from different educational spheres – private, parochial, public, classical Christian and homeschool – and from all over the continental United States and around the globe.
Freshman officially arrived on campus Thursday, August 24. Move-in day begins with a caravan of overloaded SUVs, minivans and more arriving on campus. With military precision and boundless goodwill, members of the Orientation Board help students and their families unload and unpack and then it’s on to two solid days of orientation to college life for the Class of 2021. Upperclassmen arrive Saturday, August 26.
“We’re excited to welcome the Class of 2021,” College President Paul J. McNulty said. “As an alumnus and parent of alums, I understand the transformative power of a Grove City College education. Relationships that last a lifetime start this week at Grove City College – where academic excellence and faithfulness are key institutional values. Our freshmen are at the beginning of an amazing journey, in scholarship and faith that will prove to be both challenging and rewarding.”
McNulty said the increase in applications is due to marketing outreach efforts during the past year, an increase in merit-based financial aid, and the College’s commitment to affordability and the value this provides.
McNulty said that another major strength for the College’s enrollment is the school’s extraordinary retention of upperclassmen. Ninety-four percent of Grove City College freshman return for their sophomore year, a retention rate far above that of most colleges and universities.
Each year, Grove City College also offers generous Trustee Scholarships to deserving students. Trustee Scholars and Fellows enjoy a rich academic experience with an intensive mentoring opportunity that promotes greater academic achievement and the benefits of a liberal arts education.
Nearly 80 percent of students graduate in four years – more than 20 points above the national average – and some 46 percent of them are debt-free. Placement rates for graduates six months out show 96 percent employed or in graduate school, and starting and mid-career salaries for alumni are above the national average, according to PayScale.com, which ranks the College as a Best Value school.