Wooster Welcomes the Class of 2016

Talented and diverse group selected from college's largest applicant pool ever

August 24, 2012 by John Hopkins

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WOOSTER, Ohio, August 24, 2012 –They come from 39 states and 27 countries, from 10,000 miles away and from just down the road. The 570 new first-year students and 15 transfer students who arrived on Wooster’s campus this week for orientation are a talented and diverse group, selected from more than 5,200 applicants, the college’s largest applicant pool ever.  

Almost half were ranked in the top 10 percent of their high school class and one in four is either a U.S. multiethnic or international student. Twenty-one percent receive Pell grants, from the federal financial aid program for low-income students, a higher percentage than at many flagship state schools.  

The atmosphere in McGaw Chapel on Thursday was charged with excitement and anticipation as the newest Scots and hundreds of their parents, siblings, and other family members were serenaded by the Scot Pipers, before being formally welcomed to the Class of 2016 by President Grant Cornwell.  

“Be prepared to work hard,” Cornwell told them. “A liberal education isn’t something we can give you. It’s something you have to do yourselves.” He also spoke of the joy of learning and urged students to “discover and craft your own reason for being here, your passion.”  

On Friday, that process of discovery and education began in earnest, as the new students heard a presentation by distinguished journalist and foreign policy analyst Robin Wright, author of Rock the Casbah: Rage and Rebellion Across the Islamic World.  

Wright prefaced her remarks with a personal observation. When she was an undergraduate at the University of Michigan, she ran into a friend who was on her way to join the staff of the student newspaper. Wright went along, more or less as a lark, and thus began a reporting career with the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, CBS News, and other outlets that has taken her around the world.  

“Experiment with lots of different things,” Wright told the first-years. “You never know what it might lead to.”  

Classes for all students begin Monday.