University of Pittsburgh
August 24, 2003

Class of 2007 Reflects University of Pittsburgh's Increasing Appeal

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PITTSBURGH—The University of Pittsburgh's Class of 2007 arrived recently at the Oakland campus. The class—from 43 states, Washington D.C., Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands—is further evidence of the University's widespread appeal and selectivity.

This year, 17,476 students applied to Pitt, an increase of 10 percent from last year and 123 percent from 1995.

Of those students who applied, 48.2 percent were admitted. This makes admission to the Oakland campus almost 31 percentage points more selective than in 1995, when 79 percent of all applicants were accepted. As of today, the first day of classes, 2916 admitted students committed to enroll at Pitt this fall; Russia, Greece, Pakistan, Nigeria, Australia, and Canada are among the countries represented.

In the Class of 2007:

• Forty-three percent graduated in the top 10 percent of their high school class—four percent more than last year and 24 percent more than in 1995. When special-access students are excluded from the total, the percentage of freshmen who graduated in the top 10 percent increases to 46.

• The average Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) score earned was 1213, an increase of more than 100 points since 1995. When special-access students are excluded, the SAT average increases to 1236, 15 points higher than in 2002.

• The average SAT score for Honors College-eligible students rose to 1386, a 29-point increase from last year.

But this class has a story that statistics alone cannot tell. The high standards of academic excellence and ambition that characterize the freshman class are exemplified by Charise M. Shively of Scottdale, Pa.

Shively, who graduated in the top two percent of Southmoreland High School's Class of 2003, also brings with her an impressive array of extracurricular activities and volunteer work.

During her senior year, Shively, whose mother was born and raised in the Philippines, served as vice president of Young Filipino Americans of Pittsburgh (YFAP), a folk dance group and offshoot of the Filipino American Association of Pittsburgh (FAAP), which is helping to raise funds for a Philippine Nationality Room in Pitt's Cathedral of Learning.

In addition, Shively was also a school board representative, student council treasurer, a letterman in varsity tennis, president of the Spanish National Honor Society and Spanish Club, and vice president of Southmoreland Environmentally Aware Students Club, all the while maintaining a 4.0 grade point average and working part-time.

Shively's involvement with YFAP and her three years of volunteering at three Oakland-area hospitals have given her a sense of connectedness to the University and a fondness for the community.

That involvement and a two-week mission trip to the Dominican Republic in 2001 have resulted in Shively's goal of pursuing a career in medicine, with the hope of one day delivering medical care to people in Third-World countries.

Upgraded facilities, enhanced academic programs, and award-winning athletic teams assuredly draw ever-increasing numbers of students, but Pitt also is seen as place to pursue one's dreams.

That is certainly the case for freshman Joseph M. DelSardo Jr. of Dormont, Pa. DelSardo turned down three full scholarships to Division 1-AA universities to come to Pitt as a "preferred walk-on" for the football team. DelSardo, who made first-team All State his senior year of high school, was named both the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review player of the year in 2002.

Since childhood, DelSardo has dreamed of playing Division 1 football. Though Pitt football coaches could not offer the Seton La Salle High School graduate any guarantees, DelSardo was satisfied with the opportunity to earn a spot on the team and possibly even a scholarship, while playing with some of the best players in the country.

On Aug. 10, he reported to preseason camp with 105 Panther football players and recruits, including senior wide receiver Yogi Roth, a two-time letterman who also came to Pitt as a preferred walk-on.

DelSardo was inspired by Roth's perseverance. "He worked hard to earn a scholarship," DelSardo said.

J.D. Brookhart, offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach at Pitt, sees potential in DelSardo.

"I love the kid; I think he can be our next Yogi Roth. We had him in our high school camp, and I saw a lot of intangibles in him. He had some opportunities to play on scholarship at the 1-AA level, but he wanted to play at the highest level, and I think he can."

Shively, DelSardo, and each member of the freshman class enter Pitt with a unique set of talents and ambitions.

With their array of talents, the Class of 2007 undoubtedly will write a new page in Pitt's history.

Note: This profile is based on data compiled as of July 10, 2003, by the Office of the Provost, except as indicated.