We’re happy to report that this year we received 545 applications to our graduate program, vs. 303 last year (numbers were similar in previous years). Some of this flattering increase, we realize, is probably due to the dismal state of the economy – anecdotal evidence suggests that other schools are seeing the same sorts of increases. Graduating seniors may well be thinking, “The job market is far from what it was two years ago and even a year ago. But things are bound to turn around soon, so I’ll go to grad school in the meantime. And even if they don’t turn around, at least I’ll have improved my mind!” But even with this contributing factor, we’ll take the increase as a tribute – no more than deserved, of course – to the department’s merits and attractions, and look forward greatly to greeting next year’s graduate-student class!