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Stanford Sets Record with almost 37,000 freshman applications

Stanford University received an estimated 36,744 applications for freshman admission — a record — as the school’s athletic success drummed up attention. Applications rose 7 percent from 34,348 a year earlier, Bob Patterson, director of admissions, said today in an e-mail.

Stanford, near Palo Alto, California, admitted 7.1 percent of its applicants for the 2011-2012 academic years. Admissions officials had speculated that the tough competition to win a seat combined with reinstated early acceptance programs at Harvard University and Princeton University might have deterred some students from applying to Stanford, Patterson said today in an interview.

“It’s a little more than we anticipated,” Patterson said. “Stanford did very well in football and Andrew Luck was a leader for the university.” Luck, the Stanford Cardinals quarterback and a two-time Heisman Trophy runner-up, is considered a top National Football League prospect.

Stanford, which opened in 1891, counts among its alumni Herbert Hoover, the 31st U.S. president; Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the founders of Google Inc., and U.S. Supreme Court Justices Stephen Breyer and Anthony Kennedy.

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