University of California to use applicant waiting lists |

University of California to use applicant waiting lists

Terence Chea
Associated Press Writer

SAN FRANCISCO – The University of California plans to begin using waiting lists for undergraduate applicants to help manage enrollment as the 10-campus system grapples with budget cuts and record demand for spots, officials said Wednesday.

The UC system will use waiting lists for the first time this spring after a successful test run at the Irvine campus last year, said Sue Wilbur, director of undergraduate admissions.

The waiting lists will help campuses meet their enrollment targets at a time when deep budget cuts have forced UC to reduce the number of undergraduates it enrolls, she said.

“It’s particularly useful at a time when campuses can’t afford to overenroll,” Wilbur said. “It also allows us to accommodate as many students as we are funded for.”

Last year, the 10-campus system reduced freshman enrollment by 2,300 students, or about 6 percent, and UC officials are considering further cuts for the coming academic year. At the same time, UC campuses have been increasing the number of transfer students from community colleges.

At Wednesday’s meeting of the UC Board of Regents, officials said they were encouraged by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 2010-2011 budget proposal, which would restore about $370 million of the roughly $600 million that was cut from UC’s budget this fiscal year.

But it will be several months of negotiations with the Legislature before a final budget is approved, and the governor’s budget plan assumes the state will receive nearly $7 billion from the federal government that may not materialize.

“We are still a long way before having a signed budget … so we need to be cautious,” said Patrick Lenz, UC’s vice president for budget. “We’re in for an overwhelming challenge given all the competing interests in the budget.”

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