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UBC Reports | Vol. 49 | No. 2 | Feb. 6, 2003

Double Cohort Presents Opportunity for UBC

A chance to attract the best and the brightest

By Michelle Cook

A record number of Ontario students will finish high school this spring, and UBC officials say that’s a good thing.

“We see the double cohort as an opportunity to attract some of Ontario’s best and brightest high school graduates to contribute to our campus, in keeping with the Trek 2000 goal of diversifying our student body,” says Rosalie Phillips, assistant registrar, undergraduate admissions.

“British Columbia traditionally exports more students than it receives, and our out-of-province numbers have been down over the last few years, so we’d like to see a small increase in students from other provinces.”

Ontario students from both Grades 12 and 13 will graduate this year, as the provincial government phases out Grade 13. The double cohort means about 75,000 students -- 34,000 more than last year -- are looking for spots at post-secondary institutions.

UBC has been actively recruiting in Ontario this year to make that province’s top students aware of the opportunities here, and recruiters’ efforts appear to be paying off.

As of Jan. 15, UBC’s admissions office had received 2,244 applications from Canadian high school students applying from outside of B.C. Of those, approximately 750 were from Ontario. In the previous year, the total number of out-of-province applications received by the end of March was 2,248.

Phillips says it’s difficult to compare the Ontario numbers with statistics from previous years because UBC hasn’t tracked students from that province separately before. But she is quick to point out that the out-of-province application spike doesn’t mean B.C. high school students applying to UBC will be displaced.

“There’s no question that applications from Ontario and other provinces are increasing,” Phillips explains. “But I think there’s a lot of undue anxiety being created by the media coverage of the Ontario situation.”

Even with Ontario’s double cohort, Phillips says out-of-province students still account for only a small proportion of UBC’s undergraduate applications. She adds that many students may only be looking at schools outside their province as a back-up plan.

“Ontario applicants who are good enough to get into UBC don’t need a back-up plan, they’ll likely get into the institution of their choice. Applicants with marginal grades won’t be offered admission to UBC because we are a highly competitive institution,” Phillips says.

As for the public concern that more applicants will blow admissions averages through the roof, Phillips says that it’s too early to tell what this year’s final cut-off grades will be.

“Admission averages are driven by the number of spaces available, and number and quality of applicants we receive. We fill our seats with top applicants. It’s too early to guess what the final admission cut-offs will be because we haven’t yet received or evaluated all the applications,” Phillips says.

For a look at past UBC admission averages by program, visit http://students.ubc.ca/welcome/apply/averages.cfm.

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Last reviewed 22-Sep-2006

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