Archive for October, 2010

Fall: A Great Time to Make Connections

Monday, October 25th, 2010

Fall is here – school is in full swing, a light jacket is needed, the leaves are changing and we admissions counselors have been busy traveling around the country to high schools and college fairs to meet with you, prospective students, as well as your high school counselors and parents. This is when we get the opportunity to bring Holy Cross to you, let you know about all of the new and exciting things going on here on campus and also give you the opportunity to make a connection with our office in a place you know.

One of my favorite things about working in admissions is the ability to travel to your high schools and college fairs to meet with you and your families because I can learn more about you and your high school and see what your city and town is like firsthand. I remember how stressful the college process can be and having a representative travel to your school and meet with you, I hope, makes things just a little bit easier. I love walking into a room of students from one to twenty-one and being able to answer any questions they have about Holy Cross and the admissions process, in hopes that they learned something new and will think of me later if something else comes to mind big or small.

For those of you who live across the country it is your chance to interact with us counselors in person and make a personal connection. That is what fall travel is about, the ability for you to make a personal contact with an officer like me so that when you have questions along the way you have a connection with the person reading your application.

Julliana Jennings

Assistant Director of Admissions

Multicultural Recruitment

Admissions Myths and Truths Revealed

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

Travel season is in full swing. Admissions counselors are out and about at high schools and college fairs, including myself. This year during my travels I’ve heard a few admissions myths from students and counselors alike that we would like to dispel.

Myth: “That school is too hard to get in to.”

Truth: You never know until you try. Even admissions counselors can’t tell you whether you would get in or not until the process is complete. There are a multitude of factors that are taken into consideration. First in your family to go to college? That’s a plus for you. Live in Washington DC? There’s another plus. You’ve probably got a lot more going for you than you realize.

Myth: “That school is too expensive”

Truth: You should never be intimidated by the sticker price of a school. If it is a school you are interested in apply for financial aid. Students are often surprised by how much aid they qualify for. And by the way, Holy Cross meets need 100%.

Myth: “I’ll save money by enrolling in a community college for two years and then transferring to a four year institution”

Truth: You may end up spending more time and money by attending a two year school first. Credits don’t always transfer and you may have to take some courses a second time. Also the quality of the education or the student life experience may not be the same. Be sure to consider all of the factors before making a decision to transfer.

Amanda Juriansz

Assistant Director of Admissions

Travel Season

Tuesday, October 19th, 2010

To those of us that work in admissions, the time of year commonly referred to as “autumn,” means one thing alone: travel season.   At this time of year, my staff and I are dispersed across the country (and abroad!) visiting high schools, attending college fairs, interviewing prospective students,  and hosting receptions and information sessions. The activities and events vary depending on what part of the country we are visiting, but the goal is fundamentally the same: to help students, counselors and parents understand the unique educational experience available at Holy Cross.

To many,  the idea of travel sounds…well…sort of glamorous.  We fly around the country, stay in nice hotels and eat out…a lot.   And when people hear the places I visit (Florida and Puerto Rico),  they have a hard time believing that this is really work.   I can just imagine the visuals the more skeptical person might conjure up: lounge chair by the pool with a cool drink garnished with a colorful paper umbrella in hand.  Well, I am here to report that no matter how exotic the territory may sound, the travel experience differs little from the more local (some might say mundane) areas. We meet some great students, exchange information with guidance counselors, and spend a lot of time in the car. Granted, my territories are warmer, so while I don’t worry about snow storms, I do have the occasional hurricane warning with which to contend. In the end, it is all about spreading the word about Holy Cross, no matter the location.

And I do love spreading the word.

Ann McDermott

Director of Admissions

Meet New Admissions Counselor Dan Weagle

Friday, October 15th, 2010

My name is Dan Weagle and I am a brand new, fresh out of the packaging, mint condition Admissions Counselor here at the College of the Holy Cross. I graduated from Holy Cross in 2008 with my Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and Classics. Upon graduating, I worked as a paralegal at a Worcester law firm for almost two years.

I would describe myself as a history buff. When I am not reading up on my favorite subjects (Early American History and U.S. involvement in WWI & WWII), I can be found among the suits of armor at Higgins Armory, performing research at the Yankee Division Museum, or simply watching the History Channel.

History is somewhat of a full time hobby for me, but I do get out and enjoy Mother Nature on the weekends when I play a round of disc golf with friends at one of the many disc golf courses in and around Worcester. “What is disc golf?” you might ask. Simply put, it is golf with a disc (Frisbee). If you have any more questions or you are at all intrigued by the thought of this game, you should “Google” the nearest disc golf course and head there immediately. You will not be disappointed. If you are disappointed, you must have “Googled” incorrectly. You should really be more careful next time you “Google.”

I am thrilled to be back here at Holy Cross helping to assemble a diverse community of eager, intelligent, autonomous students. However, I won’t be on Mount Saint James for long. In fact, as we speak I am most likely in the Missouri or DC area visiting high schools, representing Holy Cross at a college fair, or hosting an interview night. Check out our fall travel schedule to see if I will be at your high school and, if it strikes your fancy, stop by and see me. Seriously, stop by and chat me up – otherwise, who will prevent me from going to that restaurant down the road from your school that plays horrible music? Yeah, you know the one – the one where the French fries are soggy and everything tastes like Styrofoam. I don’t want to eat there. Please do a service to the new guy and point him in the opposite direction of that place.

I look forward to meeting you!

Dan Weagle ‘08

Admissions Counselor

Asking About Financial Aid

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

As a new Admissions Counselor I am really enjoying my time on the road visiting different student and high schools around the country. I just got back from Atlanta where I saw a lot of amazing students and really enjoyed the beautiful (but hot!) weather. However, in my travel I have come across a lot of commonly asked questions.

The first question I am always asked is usually about scholarships at Holy Cross. My response is always the same: “We have limited merit aid options because we are a financial aid based school. However, should you apply for aid,  we meet 100% of your family’s demonstrated need.”

Nonetheless, students seem to think that Holy Cross is a financially unreachable goal when they hear that scholarships are limited. What I have to tell you is that you should never cross a college/university off of your list because of the “sticker price” of the school. Look into each school’s financial aid or merit scholarship options and do research on different colleges’ financial aid packages. Try reaching out to some financial aid offices as well. You may be pleasantly surprised and learn that colleges that seemed out of reach financially are affordable options with great aid packages.

A better question to ask these different college representatives when you see them at a fair or high school is “What kind of aid do you offer: financial aid or merit scholarships? Could you also tell me more about the specific type of aid your school offers?”

Krystle Leveille

Admissions Counselor

Most Frequently Asked Questions from the Road

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

The last few weeks have been exciting and rewarding as all of us in the Admissions Office have been traveling the country, meeting with students in their hometowns and in their high schools.  After traveling for a few days, it becomes apparent that many students tend to ask the same questions in town after town.  Here below are the most frequently asked questions with my answers.

  1. 1. “Is ___ a good topic for my essay?”

Yes — if that’s the topic you’ve selected.  No – if someone else told you to write about it.

2. “Are interviews required at Holy Cross?”

No, but they are strongly recommended.  For more information regarding interviews, click here.

3.What’s that on your shirt?

Ketchup.  Or salsa.  Or both.

4. “Do you offer Early Action?”

No.  But we do offer Early Decision.  For more information, see here:

5. “What’s your single favorite thing about Holy Cross?”

The people.  The food.  The Jesuit mission.  The Admissions Office.  Worcester.

6. “Isn’t that more than one?”

Yes.

7. “Should I submit my SAT scores?”

That’s a great conversation to have with your guidance counselor but know this – in our review process, we are going to focus on your accomplishments over the course of four years, not four hours on a Saturday morning.

Thanks to all those who have come out to meet with us on the road this fall.  If you still have more questions or just want to learn more, we hope you’ll be able to attend one of our two Fall Open House events.  For more details, see here.