By Adam Eisner
An increasing number of Ontario high school students are making Ryerson their university of choice, according to recent statistics released by the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre.
Ryerson was chosen by 4,500 high school students as their first choice university for the 1999-2000 school year, beating last year’s total of 3,970.
Ryerson’s 13.4-per-cent increase beats the gains of several Ontario universities, including the University of Waterloo’s 12.2 per cent, the University of Ottawa’s 11.5 and the University of Toronto’s 2.1.
The number of high school students who name Ryerson as their second choice increased 9.7 per cent to 4,158 from 3,789.
“It’s not just good numbers this year, it’s a gain from last year as well,” said Ian Marlatt, Ryerson’s director of communications. “The notable thing here is we’re up in first and second choices.”
Applications to Ontario universities increased by more than 26 per cent this year, which comes on the heels of restructuring to the Ontario university application process.
Before the 1998-1999 school year, high school students could not apply to more than three universities in Ontario. Students may now apply to as many as they want in the province provided they pay a fee if they choose more than three.
Marlatt sais this increase means students are realizing “that Ryerson is offering the education needed for today’s market.”
Such gains have not been new to Ryerson since the school gained university status in 1993. “Ever since then, we’ve been showing increases,” Marlatt said.
He said these statistics are from applicants in their last year of high school, which only represents half of Ryerson’s first-year enrolment.
The other half is students who transferred from other universities and people who decided to take time off before entering university.