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UC schools receive record number of applications, topped by UCLA and UC San Diego

More than 206,000 people applied for admission to at least one University of California campus for the 2016 fall semester, setting a new record for the 12th year in a row, officials announced Monday.

The number of potential first-year and transfer students was 6.4% higher than it was a year ago, when almost 194,000 people sought admission to at least one of the nine campuses that serve undergraduates.

Nearly 58% of last year's applicants were admitted, although acceptance rates differed drastically among campuses, according to UC statistics.

Once again, UCLA had the largest number of applicants for this fall with about 119,000. The Westwood campus was followed by UC San Diego and UC Berkeley with nearly 103,000 and 102,000, respectively.

It was the first time in five years that the San Diego campus drew more applicants than the flagship campus in Berkeley.

Many hopefuls applied to multiple campuses, though UC officials did not give details about this. A year ago, California residents applied to an average of four UC schools.

Applications were up at every undergraduate campus, officials said. UC Merced saw the biggest jump, with 13.5% more applicants; UC Berkeley saw the smallest increase, at 5.8%.

Latino students made up the largest group of applicants, accounting for 34.1% of all students seeking admission as freshmen or transfer students. That’s up from 32.5% a year ago.

Asian Americans were the second-largest group of applicants, accounting for 29% of students seeking UC admission. That’s a drop from 30.1% last year.

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The proportion of applications from white students fell slightly, to 26.6% this year from 27%. Meanwhile, applications from African Americans rose to 6.3% in this admissions cycle from 6% of the applicant pool last year.

The number of out-of-state applicants grew by nearly 11%, and applications from international students increased nearly the same percentage. Four campuses — Irvine, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz and Davis — saw applications from international students rise more than 20%.

UC schools have been accepting more nonresident students who pay higher tuition as a way of dealing with budget cuts. But system leaders are seeking to boost in-state enrollment by 10,000 by 2018. A look at the number of applicants per campus:

Berkeley

2015

96,082

2016

101,655

Increase:

5.8%

Davis

2015

79,930

2016

86,041

Increase:

7.6%

Irvine

2015

88,792

2016

97,759

Increase:

10.1%

Los Angeles

2015

112,744

2016

119,326

Increase:

5.8%

Merced

2015

19,932

2016

22,632

Increase:

13.5%

Riverside

2015

47,669

2016

52,467

Increase:

10.1%

San Diego

2015

94,280

2016

102,692

Increase:

8.9%

Santa Barbara

2015

85,208

2016

94,015

Increase:

10.3%

Santa Cruz

2015

54,333

2016

59,102

Increase:

8.8%

Total

2015

193,873

2016

206,339

Increase:

6.4%

jason.song@latimes.com

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