Letter from the Director

Dear Colleague,

Our admissions team can’t wait to meet your students as they explore the U of M and apply to be a part of the Golden Gopher Class of 2028! 

This admissions season will be filled with familiar outreach: Our counselors are scheduling high school visits and crafting inspiring event agendas, our student tour guides are brushing up on their campus facts and backwards walks, and our entire team is coming together to assist you and your students through every step of the college search process. 

But several big changes will make this admissions season a little different than those before:

Changes to Holistic Review
After the June Supreme Court ruling on the consideration of race in college admissions, the University of Minnesota adjusted the context factors considered during holistic review of applications to no longer consider a student’s race/ethnicity. Additionally, based on an exceptionally deep review of the context factors considered in admission review, the University made the decision to no longer consider family employment/attendance at the University as a context factor. A student can choose to answer the optional application questions about these topics, but that information will no longer be displayed to the application reviewers. And remember, in our holistic review approach, there has never been one single deciding factor for admissions. We look at the student’s full set of experiences that they provide in their application. (See a summary of our holistic review changes.)

We remain steadfast in our educational mission of inclusion and access, of removing barriers to higher education for underrepresented populations, and of ensuring that all members of our community have equitable access to the University and its resources. We will continue our recruiting efforts—including special events showcasing our multicultural communities— that have yielded increased diversity in our freshman and transfer entering classes, and we always welcome applications from every student who desires to become a Gopher.

Changes to Short-Answer Questions
In order to learn more about a student’s lived experiences, add contextual information that will be used in our holistic review, and demonstrate that the University values diversity broadly defined, 2024 applicants must respond to one of our short-answer questions on the application. (In previous years, a response to this question was optional.) In 1,000 characters, students will tell us how they might contribute to, or benefit from, our diverse community of scholars. If students have additional information or extenuating circumstances to share, we have a second short-answer question where they can choose to provide more context for our holistic review of their application. Unlike an essay, responses to these short answer questions will not be used to assess writing aptitude.

Changes coming to the FAFSA
The FAFSA is changing for the 2024-2025 aid year, due to the passing of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Simplification Act. Students will benefit from a streamlined application process. We are anticipating a December launch of the FAFSA and will be ready to pass on information to you and your students as we learn more.

Thank you for being an important partner in the college search process. We appreciate the opportunity to collaborate with high school and community organization professionals like you, and we look forward to sharing our maroon and gold spirit over the coming year!


Keri Risic (she/her)
Executive Director
Office of Admissions

Director Keri Risic with Goldy Gopher