For the first time ever, college acceptance rates dropped to 5.05 percent in 2014, with Stanford turning away the highest percentage of applicants among major institutions. Over the past 30 years, college enrollment rates increased from 26 percent to 41 percent for 18- to 24-year-old students, most notably among international, Hispanic, black and Caucasian students.
Over the past 10 years, acceptance rates into college have declined by 6 percent. Among institutions that reported enough data to be included in the U.S. News Short List, Harvard accepted the second-smallest number of applicants in 2014, with 6 percent of prospective students gaining admittance. This was closely followed by Yale, Columbia and Alice Lloyd College in Kentucky. Similarly, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology saw an 86 percent increase of waitlisted students, going from 455 people in 2009 to 849 three years later.
On the other hand, acceptance among select groups of students increased. Enrollment at Emory University of students from outside the United States, for instance, increased from only 1 percent in 1997 to 15 percent in 2015. Moreover, some schools report a 100 percent acceptance rate of applicants. Alaska Bible College, the smallest college in the United States with only 38 students, accepts all of its applicants. Ranked number 21 among regional universities in the Midwest, Saint Mary of the Woods College accepts 100 percent of its applicants, as does Wayne State College.