From children’s rights activist Marian Wright Edelman to political powerhouse Stacey Abrams, Spelman College is known for developing leaders who have gone on to shape the social, political and cultural landscapes. The Atlanta-based all-women HBCU is dedicated to continuing a legacy of excellence by educating and empowering the next generation of leaders. The school recently hit a major milestone by breaking its college admissions application record.
As several institutions pivoted to virtual learning amid the public health crisis, there was growing concern surrounding the futures of historically Black colleges and universities. However, Spelman’s application rate has significantly increased. During the 2021-2022 admissions cycle, the school received over 11,000 applications; marking the highest application pool in the college’s 140-year history.
Chelsea Holley, who serves as Spelman’s interim director of admissions, says the wave of new applicants is civically engaged and their desire to cultivate change in their communities and beyond aligns with the school’s mission.
“Students are drawn to Spelman because of its strong programs and its legacy of producing inspirational leaders. The story of Spelman is one that invokes pride, belonging and historical significance,” she said in a statement. “We have been intentional about sharing the rich tradition and legacy of Spelman, while also highlighting our ability to produce the next generation of leaders in a tech-forward society. We have consistently evolved and managed to remain a pacesetter in the education and professional development of women of African descent.”
Spelman College President Mary Schmidt Campbell, Ph.D. says the application milestone is a testament to the work of the admissions team and she is excited to play a part in the growth of future leaders who will transform different industries.
“The increased interest in Spelman is a testament to the College’s reputation of graduating Black women with a competitive edge who rise to leadership roles across industries and impact positive change in their communities,” she said. “We are excited that these bright young minds are seizing the opportunity to experience our unique liberal arts education by applying to Spelman.”
News about Spelman’s historic record comes as historically Black colleges and universities throughout the country have seen a spike in enrollment. Bowie State University in Maryland, for example, recently marked its second-highest enrollment in the school’s 156-year history, according to NBC Washington.