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April 15, 2000

Trustees Approve Increase in Size of Undergraduate Body

PRINCETON, N.J., April 15 -- Princeton's trustees today formally approved the report of a special trustee committee recommending that Princeton increase the size of its undergraduate student body by approximately 10 percent (from 4,600 to 5,100) to "enhance the quality of the overall educational experience at Princeton and make more effective use of the University's extraordinary resources."

The committee was appointed in the fall of 1997 to consider a number of long-term strategic issues facing Princeton over the coming decade, including issues related to the size of the undergraduate student body, the undergraduate financial aid program, the Graduate School, the faculty, the administrative and support staffs, the University's physical resources, the University's financial resources, the use of new technologies and the library. The committee submitted its report in January. The chair of the committee is Paul Wythes, a charter trustee from California and a member of the Class of 1955.

The report adopted by the trustees contained revised language in three areas:

- The trustees recorded their concurrence with members of the faculty who have urged that sufficient resources be made available to ensure that the quality of instruction is sustained and even enhanced, and that the administration take advantage of the increase in the size of the student body to further strengthen the University's commitment to diversity and to the high intellectual quality of the student body.

- The University will be prepared to meet the additional challenges of sustaining its objectives in student life through increased resources. Increasing the number of undergraduate students also can offer the University opportunities to improve student life, by creating more diverse social, dining and living options and by extending the range of student activities.

- It may be necessary to increase the number of graduate students admitted to certain departments, especially those that now have unusually high numbers of concentrators, where the quality of the graduate applicant pool will sustain such an increase and where additional assistants in instruction or research are necessary and well qualified.

The increase in student body size will be phased in over four years, beginning three or four years from now after additional dormitory and dining space has been constructed.