Fordham University – Acceptance Rate, GPA, Requirements, and More

Fordham University enrolls 16,000 students from over 80 countries

Despite its large size, the university boasts a tight community that values and educates the whole student. All majors provide a strong foundational core and a variety of resources to explore each subject in-depth.

Based on the university’s selectivity, faculty resources, and reputation amongst peer institutions, Fordham is ranked #66 by US News. Fordham is also recognized as one of the country’s “Hidden Ivies.” This title highlights the school’s prestigious liberal arts education, on par with the top schools in the country.

Due to the school’s Jesuit origins and principles, faculty members respect each individual student and their abilities. Students are encouraged to challenge themselves and use their abilities to serve the Fordham community.

Each year, the university contributes over 1 million hours of community service.

Fordham’s New York location provides endless career opportunities across a wide range of fields. Students have access to over 3,500 NYC-based internships. These experiential learning opportunities help students develop important career skills for their future careers.

Along with New York, Fordham has centers in London, Spain, and South Africa. Their vast offerings of over 100 study abroad opportunities promote global diversity and help students understand the complexities of an interconnected world. 47% of Fordham students participate in study abroad programs.

Undergraduate research is another tool that Fordham uses to provide learning experiences outside of the classroom. Students co-author papers in journals, participate in competitive research programs, and present their work at conferences. 

The Louis Calder Center is a state-of-the-art biological field station that allows undergraduates to study undisturbed communities.

Fordham has a decorated athletics program, finding success in sports from football to basketball to track. 

There are over 20 varsity athletic teams, with the majority competing in the Division I Atlantic 10 Conference. Fordham athletes include big names like Frankie Frisch, Vince Lombardi, Tom Courtney, and Bill Chadwick.

Fordham University Acceptance Rate

Fordham University
Indefatigable2, Cunniffe House, Fordham University, CC BY-SA 4.0

Fordham provides a comprehensive curriculum in a city that most students dream of visiting. In addition, the programs and learning opportunities prepare students to drive change in the real world. It comes as no surprise that Fordham programs are competitive to get into.

With an acceptance rate of 44% for the Class of 2020, Fordham is considered more selective by US News. 

This means that students need to show their academic success and achievements to be admitted. Students have a good chance of being accepted if they prove that they are above the average applicant.

Fordham’s acceptance rate for the Class of 2020 has dropped four points from the previous year. Over the past couple of decades, the university’s selectivity has improved dramatically. This is as a result of increasing recognition and more competitive applicants.

Fordham receives nearly 50,000 applicants, with over 2,000 prospective international students. Students come from all over the world with varying backgrounds and perspectives. 

Undergraduates come to Fordham from all 50 states and over 100 countries.


Fordham’s most recent class profile shows an average GPA of 3.75. This indicates that the majority of accepted students earn mostly A’s with a few B’s. Over half of admitted students are in the top 10% of their class.

Along with the expectation that you are above average in your high school class, it is important to take academically rigorous courses. 

AP and IB classes increase your weighted GPA and show that you can handle the difficulty of college-level classes. Challenging yourself with your course load helps you stay competitive with other applicants.

The academic profile of accepted students at Fordham has risen over the past years. The university wants to make sure that undergraduates are adequately prepared to succeed with a rigorous curriculum. 

Suppose your GPA is below the previous class average. In that case, you can make up for it in other areas of your application, such as letters of recommendation or a solid personal statement.

SAT & ACT Requirements

At Fordham, 74% of students submit SAT scores, and 32% submit ACT scores. The average SAT range falls between 1300 and 1450

On the other hand, students who offer their ACT scores for consideration tend to score from 29 to 33.

The admissions team prefers testing scores within the context of the middle 50% range of the most recently admitted class. This means that you want to fall within or above this range to be considered competitive. 

No matter which scores you submit, the university takes the highest scores across multiple attempts, which is called “superscoring.”

From Fall 2021 – Fall 2023, SAT and ACT scores are considered but not required. As the test score is only one of many factors, those who do not submit testing will not be penalized. After 2 years, the university will revisit their test-optional policy.

Students who do not submit ACT or SAT scores will still be considered for merit scholarships and merit programs. It is important to consider whether your test scores will give Fordham the greatest view of your strengths as an applicant.

Requirements & Admission Tips

Fordham University
Howchou, Fordham University, CC BY-SA 3.0

When applying to Fordham, you must choose to apply to a specific campus and college. The campuses are located in Rose Hill and Lincoln Center. The application requirements vary with each degree program, such as theater and visual arts.

No matter what application materials each student chooses to submit, the admissions team reviews applications holistically. 

According to Niche, 71% of students feel that the admissions team at Fordham evaluated them as an individual. Applicants are not viewed as a set of test scores and grades.

Along with the optional testing scores and class rank, students must submit their transcript, GPA, letters of recommendation, Common Application personal statement, and essay responses.

With the high school transcript, the admissions team is looking to see a rigorous curriculum and that you chose to challenge yourself. 

Students must have completed 3 – 4 years of core subjects like English, science, mathematics, social studies, and foreign language. This aligns with Fordham’s core curriculum methodology to give students a strong foundation.

Letters of recommendation should come from an academic teacher or counselor that can illustrate how you navigate through academic environments. Your evaluator should be able to talk about your character and how you make your community better. You can submit more than one letter for consideration if they reveal something else about you as an applicant.


The Common Application personal statement allows the admissions team to get to know you as an individual. 

In addition, Fordham considers communication a vital part of education and they use your writing to see if you are ready to engage with the campus community. The personal statement also shows your unique voice, who you are, and what motivates you.

Along with the personal statement, Fordham has optional essays to share more about yourself. While you will not be penalized for not completing them, these responses help show why you’re a good fit for Fordham and vice versa. They are looking to see how you approach these questions and answer them.

The optional questions give students an opportunity to provide additional information not found elsewhere in the application. In addition, Fall 2022 applicants have a space to explain how COVID-19 has impacted their life. The unique Fordham question asks students to reflect on their personal growth and how they will continue to grow using the resources at Fordham.

Notable Alumni

Notable alumni from Fordham include many political figures, actors, athletes, military honorees, CEOs, and writers. 

There are over 190 Fulbright Scholars that graduated from the university. In addition, this impressive group includes big names in the arts and entertainment such as Denzel Washington, Alan Alda, Marry Higgins Clark, and Lana Del Rey.

Louis Boccardi, Class of ‘58, was the CEO and President of the Associated Press. While in charge of the world’s largest news organization, he managed the company’s transition to the internet age. 

He returned to Fordham for the 100-year anniversary of the school’s student newspaper and gave a speech about the importance of calling out mistruths in journalism.

As the CIA Director from 2013 – 2017, John Brennan used his political science knowledge from Fordham. 

He saw a recruitment ad for the CIA while riding a bus to class at Fordham. In addition, Brennan served as the deputy national security advisor, assistant to the president for homeland security, and distinguished fellow at the Center on National Security at Fordham Law.

Is Fordham Right for You?

Fordham University
Howchou, Fordham University 08, CC BY-SA 3.0

Good matches for Fordham University will appreciate the school’s learning objectives. Students should thrive academically and actively seek to develop necessary qualities like integrity, perseverance, and leadership. Fordham students are continuously learning, both inside and out of the classroom.

If you are looking for your college to be a place you can call home, Fordham might be right for you. Undergraduates at Fordham want to add to their community. They continuously strive for excellence and work to become the best versions of themselves.

Fordham students are passionately engaged in everything they do. They take advantage of internships, study abroad, and other academic opportunities. If you are looking to be more than a face in the classroom, Fordham is a good match.

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