The Wofford Admission staff found something distinctive in each member of the Class of 2024.
“Each year we strive to enroll a class that is academically competitive, comprised of students who are leaders in their communities and can bring varying perspectives to our campus community,” says Megan Tyler ’14, director of admission. “Our selection process is incredibly thorough, and we identified something special in each of our incoming students.”
Class of 2024 Snapshot:
- 21 transfer students.
- 496 first-year students.
- 261 female.
- 236 male.
- 95 nonwhite.
- 281 out-of-state.
- 216 in-state.
- 67 first-generation college students.
- 88 Pell-eligible.
- 141 legacy connections.
- 95 student-athletes (57 signed and 38 walk-on).
- 24 Gold Awards/ Eagle Scouts.
- 61 club presidents.
- 164 team captains.
- 33 editors.
- 51 student government leaders, including 9 student body presidents.
- 4 valedictorians; 10 salutatorians.
One student is fluent in three languages; another established her own jewelry line and recruited 65 ambassadors to help her sell her product. Four students were awarded Athlete of the Year honors. One member of the class is a National Horatio Alger Association Scholar, and another was blessed by Pope Francis on New Year’s Day. A student started a podcast, another won a state cooking competition and yet another presented summer research on the gut microbiome of zebrafish.
For all of their differences, however, the Class of 2024 has something in common — graduating from high school during COVID-19.
“Our incoming class has faced adversity in ways few other incoming cohorts have thus far. In response to the pandemic, they have developed skills that can only be refined in difficult times. They have embraced this challenge with remarkable resilience, displaying what we already knew they possessed — the hearts of Terriers,” says Tyler. They navigated remote learning, wore masks while filling essential roles and found ways to improve themselves while staying home. The college’s admission staff reached out to check on accepted students during the spring and summer. During those conversations, the students shared their quarantine activities: one became a sales manager, several ran half marathons while others learned to make face masks; one student made several hundred.
The Class of 2024 also holds the distinction of being Wofford’s largest ever incoming class. The college received a record 4,110 applications, including a record number of early decision applications. Selectivity was at an all-time low of 53%.
Among Members of the class of 2024 are individuals who:
- Climbed a glacier.
- Summited a fourteener, one of 96 U.S. mountain peaks with an elevation of at least 14,000 feet.
- Performed at Carnegie Hall and exhibited at the High Museum.
- Participated in 4 Black Lives Matter protests.
- Ran 1,000 miles in a year.
- Has a 93-mph fast ball.
- Had their research accepted by the International Conference of Microwave Spectroscopy.
- Beat the video game 2048.
- Started a blog to address mass migration in Africa.
- Took a 6,000-mile road trip through 14 states.
Among Members of the class of 2024 are individuals who:
- Learned Gujarati and American Sign Language.
- Learned to play the ukulele.
- Learned to sew; one student made over 200 masks.
- Raised a pet cow.
- Created a tribute video for his high school senior class.
- Read 15 books.
- Trained for a marathon.
- Road tripped to Idaho.
- Binged “Game of Thrones” in a week.
First-year students include:
- AP Scholars with Distinction.
- State champions in track, debate, motocross, mock trial, tennis, soccer and cooking.
- A black belt in Tae Kwon Do.
- 2020 DAR Citizen of the Year in South Carolina.
- An Odyssey of the Mind World Champion.
- A Canadian applying for U.S. citizenship.
- A certified Emergency Medical Technician.
- A rapper whose songs are on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.
- The top-rated tennis player in Mexico.
- A certified CrossFit trainer.
A message to the class of 2025.
COVID-19 limited the ability of high school juniors to tour colleges during the popular spring and summer visit months.
“This year’s class will most likely be applying to colleges they have not yet had the chance to visit,” says Tyler. “These students have already navigated a disruptive end to their junior year and will most likely face many new challenges in their senior year. Learning more about college options virtually will be yet another challenge.”
Because of this, the Wofford Office of Admission has reexamined the ways in which it communicates with prospective students, becoming more accessible than ever before.
“Our recruitment plan includes both virtual and in-person options,” says Tyler, referring to limited in-person visits to high schools and small on-campus information sessions and tours for seniors as well as weekly virtual information sessions and several virtual open house events. Admission counselors also are eager to schedule Zoom meetings with students unable to visit in person. “With the addition of virtual options, we are able to offer support to our prospective students in ways that best meet their needs and engage with them where they are, especially students who previously may not have been able to attend on-campus events.”
Wofford also has joined the Making Caring Common Initiative, which outlines new ways to evaluate admission applications during 2020 and 2021. The initiative assesses academic achievements and extracurricular activities in the context of the obstacles caused by coronavirus and places increased emphasis on service and contributions to others, family contributions and self-care.
“We want high school seniors to know that we value their experience during COVID-19, and the Common Application gives opportunities for students to do that. Students should also know that Wofford is test optional,” says Tyler.
By Jo Ann Mitchell Brasington ’89