Alex Colletta

Staff Writer

Seven of the University of California’s nine undergraduate campuses will implement waitlists for freshmen applicants, for the second consecutive year.

The UC established the program in Fall 2010 to allow campuses to reach enrollment quotas but still admit some qualified students who were not initially accepted. In total, the UC placed 11,703 of its 100,320 applicants onto waitlists last year, although UCSB and UC Davis were the only campuses to actually admit waitlisted students — the two campuses each eventually approved over 40 percent of their waitlisted applicants.

Donna Coyne, UCSB’s associate director of admissions, said the initiative is a useful and necessary asset for the UC.

“[The waitlist] is an enrollment management tool that allows us to be sure that we fill every available enrollment space in the fall,” Coyne said. “We’ve admitted students for the fall and we hope that the number we have predicted will return their [Statements of Intent to Register], but if they don’t, we can offer those spaces to students on our waitlist.”

While all undergraduate campuses except UCLA and UC Merced will offer waitlists for their freshmen applicant pools, UC Davis and UCSD will also use the waitlist program for transfer students.

UC freshmen and transfer applicants will be notified whether they were admitted, denied or waitlisted by late March and April, respectively. Applicants who receive waitlist offers from more than one UC campus may accept as many as they want. Students who have been offered spots on the UCSB waitlist must notify the campus by April 15 if they wish to remain on the list.

After admitting 17,744 — 45.5 percent — of its 42,542 freshmen applicants and 6,049 — 54.1 percent — of its 11,178 prospective transfer students in Fall 2010, UCSB offered over 2,400 spots on its waitlist last academic year.

This fall, UCSB received 63,000 freshmen and transfer applications — its largest applicant pool yet and an increase of 5,000 from Fall 2010. The university expects to enroll roughly 3,900 freshmen and 1,500 transfers this fall, a slight increase from the 3,720 freshmen and 1,591 transfers enrolled in Fall 2010.

Steven Velasco, UCSB’s director of institutional research and planning, said students who are not accepted from the waitlist can potentially be granted acceptance to another UC campus if they have completed the A-G course requirements and necessary placement tests and have minimum 3.0 GPAs.

“Any applicant that is deemed to be UC-eligible would go into what is known as the referral pool,” Velasco said. “They would then be offered an admit slot to a campus that has available space. Most campuses are over-enrolled at this point so that campus would most likely be UC Merced.”

Additionally, UC-eligible applicants who aren’t admitted to campuses they applied to will be offered admission at another campus if space permits. Waitlisted freshmen will be informed of their admission status by June 1 and waitlisted transfer students will be notified by July 1.

UC spokesperson Ricardo Vazquez said waitlisted applicants who receive offers from other institutions should accept them in case they aren’t admitted to the UC campus of their choice.

“If you are on the waitlist for a campus that you are really interested in, but you have another offer from another campus, you should accept the firm offer,” Vazquez said. “If you do eventually get an offer from that campus which you were on the waiting list for, you could still submit the SIR to that campus.”

—Katherine Friedman contributed to this article.