Macon--As Mercer gears up for 2004-2005, the University has many reasons for anticipating another exceptional academic year.
The University's reputation for excellence has reached the far corners of the country, with an approximately 725 new undergraduate students joining the Macon campus representing 28 different states, including Maine, Iowa and California. The University's international population is also growing, with freshmen joining the University from Ghana, Bolivia, Nigeria, Bangladesh, Canada, Mexico and Sweden.
The new students bring to campus some impressive academic qualifications. The freshmen class has an estimated 1200 SAT average, including one student who achieved a perfect 1600, and an academic grade point average of 3.6. The School of Engineering touts the highest freshman SAT average, with its incoming students averaging a SAT score of 1214.
Approximately 135, or 19 percent, of the new undergraduate students are transfer students. Some of the institutions students are transferring from include Ohio State University, University of Georgia, Auburn University, Emory University, The Citadel and New York University. The new transfer students have a 3.16 grade point average.
Mercer's health science schools continue to have a record number of applications. With one of the highest applicant pools in the nation, the Southern School of Pharmacy received 1,822 applications, an increase of 35 percent from last year, for the 130 seats in its first-year class for 2004. The School of Medicine received 634 applications from
Georgia residents for its 60 seats in the doctor of medicine program. The Georgia Baptist College of Nursing, with a fall enrollment of more than 400 students, saw the number of applications increase by 23 percent over last year's figure.
The Walter F. George School of Law is experiencing a similar trend. The School had its second highest applicant pool in history, with a total of 1,694 applicants, up more than 20 percent from last year.
The McAfee School of Theology successfully introduced its doctor of ministry degree program over the summer. The seven D.Min. candidates completed their first seminar in July.
Other new academic offerings this year include the Women's and Gender Studies major in the College of Liberal Arts and the MBA for Physicians program, debuting in January, at the Stetson School of Business and Economics in Macon. In January, the Business School will add an Executive MBA program at the University's Regional Academic Center in Henry County.
Two additional programs are on the horizon. The Tift College of Education is developing a master's program in educational leadership, and the College of Liberal Arts and the McAfee School of Theology are teaming up to offer a master's degree in sacred music.