Vanderbilt University

Mailing Address: 2201 West End Ave., Nashville, TN 37240

2008 Rank:38

2006 Rank: Not on List

Average High School GPA: N/A

Total Enrollment: 6,532

African American Enrollment: 531

Number of Applications: 12,911

Acceptance Rate: 33%

*Average SAT Score: Reading: 640-740; Math 660-740; Writing 640-730

Black Student Group(s): Black Student Alliance

Summer Program(s): Vanderbilt Summer Academy, Pre-College PAVE

Application Deadline(s): Regular Decision: Jan. 3; Early Decision: Nov. 1

Acceptance Letters Sent Out: Early Decision: Dec. 15; Regular Decision: April 1

Financial Aid/Deadlines: Jan. 3

Costs Tuition: $36,100; Housing $7,828; Dining $4,200; Books and Supplies $1,208; Student Activities & Recreation Fees $905; Personal Expenses $2,062

Greek Organizations: Alpha Phi Alpha, Kappa Alpha Psi, Omega Psi Phi, Phi Beta Sigma, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta, Phi Beta Sorority


*25th Percentile-75th Percentile


Doug Christiansen, Vanderbilt University, Dean of Admissions

What do you believe is the best preparation for a high school student to attend your institution?

First of all, we have the holistic admissions process where there’s not one variable that gets a student admitted or denied it’s really the whole package. But, if we were to rank all of those, one of the most important things a student can do is a strong high school experience. Right in tandem with that is the extracurricular, how they’ve helped their high school or a broader region in reaching out and really transforming groups while they were in high school. Academics are a critical piece and the strongest academic preparation is the rigor of the courses they take and how well they do.

What kinds of activities stand out on students’ applications?

I think for us an example would be a lot of times you’ll see a student that’s participated in 15 different activities but all at a minimal rate. We would much prefer to see a student participate in fewer activities and participate in them for a longer period of time and really make a difference in them. Be really involved in community service, really involved in student government; we’re looking for on campus people who can come here and help make a difference and move Vanderbilt and their educational experience along.

What are the other most important things on a students’ application?

I’ve already mentioned their academics. Letters of recommendation are critical; we require that two of them come from their teachers and one from their guidance counselor. They can have additional but those are required. Talk about their growth and development, how they contributed to the class. The student needs to make sure they develop those relationships with teachers. All of it is critical when you look at that holistic application. There’s not one that’s more important than the other