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The Data Blog: The 2023 Senior Survey

Senior Survey edit 2.png
Noreen Hosny / The Daily Princetonian

Following the release of The Daily Princetonian’s second annual Senior Survey, Data editors break down some interesting crosstabs. 

Name recognition of prominent students varies significantly among eating clubs


By Head Data Editor Elaine Huang

A month after the men and women’s basketball teams’ success in March Madness, 79.9 percent of senior survey respondents correctly identified that Tosan Evbuomwan ’23 plays basketball while only 42.7 percent correctly chose basketball for Julia Cunningham ’23. Accurate name recognition for Evbuomwan was almost double that for Cunningham, perhaps highlighting a gender disparity.

Varsity athletes were consistently better at identifying the correct sports of their fellow athletes. 92.3 percent of varsity athletes correctly answered Evbuomwan’s sport, compared to the 78.1 percent for non-athletes. The gap was, once again, greater for Cunningham.


69.4 percent of varsity athletes correctly identified Cunningham’s sport, 22.9 percent lower than the accuracy for Evbuomwan. Only 38.8 percent of non-athletes selected basketball, almost half of the athletes’ responses.

100 percent of Cannon members selected “Basketball” for Evbuomwan, while only 92.3 percent of the club’s members selected the same for Cunningham. Cannon and Cottage consistently had higher accuracy rates, aligning with the greater proportion of varsity athletes in those clubs.

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70.3 percent of survey respondents correctly identified Sophie Singletary ’23 as President of the Inter-Club Council (ICC). Singletary is a member of Ivy Club, and consequently, 89.7 percent of Ivy answered correctly. Ivy, however, was not the club with the highest percentage of correct responses. Tiger Inn came in first with 91.4 percent. Those who never joined an eating club identified the ICC president correctly at the lowest rate at 50.5 percent.

76.5 percent of survey respondents correctly identified Hannah Kapoor ‘23 as USG Vice-President. Kapoor is a member of Cap and Gown Club. 94.0 percent of Cap members answered correctly. Cottage Club, on the other hand, had the lowest percentage of correct responses, at only 55.6 percent.

Elaine Huang is a head Data editor for The Daily Princetonian.

B.S.E. concentrators and international students underrepresented in language study

By Associate Data Editor Ryan Konarska

Almost 80 percent of Princeton students studied a language other than English while at Princeton. Spanish was by far the most popular language, studied by over 30 percent of seniors, followed by French (studied by 16 percent of seniors) and Chinese (studied by 12 percent). Currently, 328 students are enrolled in the 100-level Spanish sequence, while 157 are enrolled in the French sequence and 91 in the Chinese sequence.

42 percent of international students in our survey reported taking a language other than English while at Princeton, far lower than the student body as a whole.

Almost 90 percent of A.B. students studied a language other than English while at Princeton, while just over half of B.S.E. students did — B.S.E. students do not have a language requirement to graduate.

When examining the language distribution by area of study, only humanities majors in our survey reported that they took Ancient Greek while at Princeton. Almost 16 percent of humanities majors reported taking Latin, a number that stood at zero among engineers and under five percent for those majoring in the social and natural sciences.

The gap in engineers pursuing language study is notable as intro-level language courses do not count towards B.S.E. majors’ distribution requirements. Head Opinion Editor emeritus Genrietta Churbanova cited this as a reason why engineers do not pursue language study at Princeton.

The ‘Prince’ also broke down language study by religion. 56 percent of those who reported taking Arabic also identified as Muslim, while all students who reported studying Hebrew while at Princeton identified as Jewish. Last week, Contributing Columnist Anais Mobarak criticized how Arabic classes at Princeton center Islam.

While most students seek out language study while at Princeton, significant gaps exist between majors, international students, and religions in whether they study a language other than English — and which one.

Ryan Konarska is an associate Data editor for the ‘Prince.’

Even when weighted, average GPA reflects trend of grade inflation

By Assistant Data Editor Marc Lessler

The average GPA of the Class of 2023 is 3.70 according to the Daily Princetonian’s senior survey, a jump from the Class of 2022’s average GPA of 3.64. In 2018, the last time the University reported the statistic, the unweighted average GPA of Princeton students school wide was 3.49.

These numbers support claims that there has been grade inflation over the past five years. Yet given the potential for skewed results on an opt-in survey, we can weight the senior survey GPAs by gender and eating club.

In 2019, Princeton offered admission to 1,895 students, split almost evenly between men and women, with 1,335 students becoming a part of the Class of 2023. Currently, as per the Residential College Tigerbook, there are 1,296 seniors. The discrepancy is likely due to students choosing to take gap years during the COVID-19 outbreak.

We estimated the breakdown of gender in the Class of 2023 based on the admissions data, and weighted the survey data accordingly. The result was a weighted GPA of 3.71 — not substantially different from the average GPA of respondents. 

Another potential method of weighting the data is by actual size of eating clubs – since clubs tend to attract similar types of people. GPA weighted by eating clubs comes out to 3.68 — again relatively similar to the average GPA of respondents. 

There could be other complicating factors that might skew the GPA of respondents relative to the total class.  But given multiple attempts at unskewing show little change, it’s likely the figure has some resemblance to the true value.

Marc Lessler is an assistant Data editor for the ‘Prince’

Students receiving no financial aid pick least lucrative majors, still earn more

By Assistant Data Editor Suthi Navaratnam-Tomayko

Students on financial aid were more likely to concentrate in departments with the highest post-Princeton incomes reported by survey respondents, except for computer science, which was more popular among students receiving no financial aid than their peers.

This year, the projected income of students earning a Bachelor of Science in Engineering (BSE) decreased, and so did its popularity among students on no financial aid. Last year, 33.3 percent of students not receiving financial aid graduated with a degree in engineering — a degree that was also predicted to out-earn other degrees immediately after graduation by between $70.7K and $102.7K, with an average projected income of $156.7K. This year, the average starting salary for engineering graduates dropped to $137.5K, and only 29.6 percent of students receiving no financial aid will graduate with the degree. 

The School of Public and International Affairs, Operations Research and Financial Engineering, Economics, and Electrical and Computer Engineering are all more popular amongst students receiving at least some financial aid than those receiving none. All of these majors are reported to make significantly more than the average for early career graduates. On the flip side, concentrations such as Art and Archaeology, Classics, and Comparative Literature, in which reported starting salaries are lower, were more popular among students on no financial aid. 

Despite being more likely to choose less lucrative majors, with the exception of computer science, students not receiving financial aid on average still report higher expected post-graduation incomes than their peers.

Suthi Navaratnam-Tomayko is an assistant Data editor for The Daily Princetonian.

President Eisgruber and political persuasion

By Head Data Editor Charlie Roth

Positions on University President Christopher L. Eisgruber ’83 have gotten more polarized this year.

According to ‘Prince’s annual Senior Survey, the percentage of the Class of 2023 that had a neutral view of President Eisgruber decreased by 6 percent from the Class of 2022, and the percentage of people whose view of Eisgruber was strongly favorable or strongly unfavorable increased. The percentage of people who held a “strongly unfavorable” view of President Eisgruber increased by nearly eight points.

The past year for Eisgruber has seen the firing of Professor Joshua Katz, which was heavily covered in the national media, and an interview with The Daily Princetonian in which a statement by Eisgruber on mental health generated significant discourse on campus.

Those who identified themselves as either “somewhat conservative” or “very conservative” held a more favorable view of Eisgruber than last year. 31.6 percent of those who are “somewhat conservative” and 42.8 percent of those who are “very conservative” said they had a favorable opinion of President Eisgruber, compared to 23.5 percent and 25 percent last year.

Granted, this is a small sample size: an increase of just eight respondents. Yet the number of people who identified as conservative is similarly small. Overall, 52 respondents identified as conservative in the Class of 2023, compared to 42 in the Class of 2022.

Additionally, the survey showed that moderates were significantly less moderate in their opinion of President Eisgruber. 13.5 percent of moderates in the Class of 2022 held a negative view of Eisgruber — that percentage nearly doubled to 26 percent in the Class of 2023.

Among liberals, Eisgruber’s approval ratings stayed relatively constant. There was an increase of 2.8 percent  in those who held a “strongly unfavorable” view from last year to this year among those identifying as “very liberal.” Among students identifying as “slightly liberal,” there was a 6.6 percent increase in those who held a favorable view of Eisgruber.

This year’s senior survey also included an option for “leftist/socialist” and “libertarian” for political persuasion. Only 12.5 percent of the libertarians (n=8) and 5.3 percent of the leftist/socialists (n=96) in the Class of 2023 have favorable views of their University President.

Views on Eisgruber 2023:

Views on Eisgruber 2022:

Charlie Roth is a head Data editor for The Daily Princetonian.

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