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Welcome to Team Science, Class of 2024!

By Cari Longman

This September, the College of Science welcomed 1,026 new first-year students, a 15% increase from last academic year. Of those students, 287, or about 28% of the freshman class, are first-generation college students. Seventeen percent are underrepresented minorities. Most of the increase in new first-year science students is due to very strong growth in the Ecampus Zoology major -- the only online undergraduate Zoology program in the country.

Home to 3,339 undergraduate, graduate and post-baccalaureate students, the College of Science (including those attending via Ecampus) attracts the most high-achieving students at Oregon State University. Forty-five percent of the incoming class are high achieving students, those who enter OSU with a high school GPA of 3.75 or higher.

The College also welcomed 312 transfer students, more than half (53%) of whom are juniors and seniors. Roughly 21% of transfer students had a GPA of 3.75 or higher, and 110, or 35%, indicated they are the first in their family to attend college. About 17% are underrepresented minorities.

“While we miss seeing our students in person this term, our instructors and advisors are doing all they can to ensure they receive ample support and a high-quality education this fall.”

“Despite the unique challenges of remote learning this term, I am excited to greet our new students. I anticipate that as they begin their students in the College of Science, they will quickly experience the rewards of studying in an institution deeply committed to their success,” said Roy Haggerty, Dean of the College of Science. “While we miss seeing our students in person this term, our instructors and advisors are doing all they can to ensure they receive ample support and a high-quality education this fall.”

Here's a look at what the Class of 2024 looks like:

  • 71% Female
  • 29% Male
  • 28% First generation
  • 17% Underrepresented minority students

Although the gender percentages above add up to 100 due to rounding, the College is also home to gender nonbinary or nonidentifying students. Four students in the incoming freshmen class identified as non-binary.

Pie charts depicting a breakdown of the class of 2024

The Class of 2024, by major

  • Biology: 285
  • BioHealth Science: 228
  • Microbiology: 18
  • Biochemistry & Molecular Biology: 90
  • Biochemistry & Biophysics: 27
  • Physics: 37
  • Chemistry: 68
  • Mathematics: 44
  • Zoology (including Ecampus): 229

Overall, 85% of incoming first-year students are studying in the life sciences, which include biology, biohealth sciences, biochemistry & molecular biology, zoology, biochemistry & biophysics, and microbiology.

A different start than normal

With the COVID-19 pandemic, this fall looks different than past years. The University is open under modified conditions. Most Corvallis course sections – approximately 90% – are being conducted remotely or online and 50% of instruction at our Bend campus is remote.

In addition, Oregon State is conducting regular testing of students and community members in Corvallis through the TRACE project. Students that chose to live on-campus this fall were all tested prior to accessing their living spaces.

The University will continue random prevalence testing of students, faculty, staff and community members throughout the term to monitor for the presence of the novel coronavirus. OSU is also conducting wastewater monitoring on its campuses in Corvallis and Bend and at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport.

The College is deeply committed to providing an excellent education and provide the support students need to succeed. Students are encouraged to make use of the Science Success Center, which is still open virtually, and many other resources and services that are available to them – including our outstanding faculty and advisors, tutoring centers and science peer advisors.

In his virtual welcome message to new and returning students, Dean Haggerty said, “Thank you for your belief and investment in the College of Science and in OSU. As we begin this new year, I look forward to what we can accomplish. I am eager to continue working together to help Science students build a strong foundation for the future and transform the world through science.”

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