Archive for November, 2011

Giving Thanks

Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

I’m thankful, above most else, for my parents. Recently—perhaps due to my newfound work as a college admissions counselor— I’ve been realizing how a portion of this gratitude is for my parents’ belief in higher education and their unwavering encouragement as I’ve pursued my own. My mom was the first person in her family to go to college; she took herself to visit schools and paid her own way at a state university. My dad, on the other hand, grew up with the expectation that he would attend a private college without worrying about the cost. Despite the differing paths they took to get their college degrees, they both came away understanding the value of a college education and even went on to pursue master’s degrees. They worked hard and saved carefully, knowing that one of their most important goals was to be able to provide their own children with the same opportunities. My dad once said that as a parent, he did not want to be the barrier standing in the way of his children’s futures—he dreamed big for us all. Did my sisters and I still need to apply for financial aid? Yes, college can be expensive! Yet what we appreciated even more than the significant financial contribution our parents made was their limitless belief in our potential and their unmistakable pride in our accomplishments.

Thanks, Mom and Dad.

Kate Stewart
Admissions Counselor

Giving Thanks

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011
I am thankful for the limitless patience held by the 10 veteran Counselors on staff, who have answered every question I’ve had since I started in July.
Zach Wielgus
Admissions Counselor

Giving Thanks

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

With looming application deadlines, it’s a busy time of year for college applicants.   To combat stress, we encourage you to take a minute to  stop, smell the turkey, and focus on all of those things for which you are grateful.   If you’re having a hard time finding that gratitude,   take some inspiration from the entries to follow, from my fellow admissions officers.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Julia Sanders
Assistant Director of Admissions

Application Stress

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

As of last week, the Holy Cross admission office is paperless!  This means that we will review all applications and make all decisions online.  For the past year or more, I have been part of a small working group tasked with making this happen.  At times the project felt dauntingly huge.  The level of detail required to document our processes seemed impossible to attain.  The only thing longer than the “to do” list was the “to figure out” list.  Still, we always knew it would all be worth it and the finished product would be a source of great pride.  So we worked.  And worked.  And worked.  We gave it our best, and now we look forward to the reward made all the sweeter because of that hard work.
Sound familiar?

Lynn Verrecchia ’01

Associate Director of Admissions

So…What do you do all day on the road?

Monday, November 14th, 2011

This time of year, when admissions counselors are spending more time in rental cars than in their own homes , that is the question I most often get from my friends, family or even prospective students. So here you go: the deep, dark secrets of what we do on the road will be revealed.  Every day is an adventure and certainly different from the next, but here’s a snapshot of my life on the road – just a typical Wednesday during travel season!

6:00am – Alarm goes off. I take a minute to orient myself to where I am, oh right – Omaha. Time to get moving!

7:45am – Arrive at my first high school visit a few minutes early and am greeted by the marching band practicing in the parking lot – I’m awake now!

8:00am – 1st High School visit of the day; here I speak with a great senior who has clearly done research on Holy Cross and has some terriffic questions. She’s looking for a small, liberal arts college in the north east – which is great, because we fit that bill!

8:45am – Leave that school and hurry over to the next, thank God for GPS!

9:00am – Arrive at my second school of the day to discover that no students have signed up to meet with me; spent time chatting with the guidance counselors about Holy Cross and what we can do to attract more kids from Nebraska.

9:45am – Have arrived a bit early for my next visit so I take a few minutes to catch up on a few things.  A quick call to check in with the office, respond to an e-mail from our Public Affairs office giving the okay for a message to be send out, and finally call back my dentist’s office about rescheduling that cleaning (got to take care of the teeth!) – and now I’m ready to head into school #3!

10:15am – Met with a great group of girls (all girls, Catholic school) – mix of juniors and seniors who asked important questions about campus culture, social life, academic opportunities, etc.

11:30am – Arrive at their all boys counterpart school and am lead to a conference room. We got a great student from here so I’m expecting to see some interest, and I do! Speak with a few different students and confirm an interview or two for later this evening.

12:30pm – Time to head to my last visit of the day! (Stomach is starting to growl)

1:00pm – Visit #5 of the day is a bit different from the rest, more of a fair format. There are a few schools here and students are free to walk around and speak to different college reps – it’s a great chance to meet with multiple kids and get the Holy Cross name out there!

2:00pm – Done with visits for the day so I head off to a lunch spot that a guidance counselor recommended. I’ll catch my breath, and make some notes on my days visits to help with next year’s planning.

3:15pm – Finally back at my hotel – time to check e-mail, hit the gym and relax for a bit.

6:00pm – Time to head down to the lobby where I’ll meet the first of two students who are interviewing tonight. These students signed up online for one of our off campus interviews – knowing I’d be in the area, they’re taking advantage of the chance to meet with me and tell me more about themselves.

7:30pm – Done with interviews, heading back up to my room where I’ll order room service and type up some notes on the candidates I’ve interviewed waiting for my dinner to arrive.

8:15pm – Dinner arrives!

9:00pm – Spend a few minutes organizing my notes for tomorrow, making sure that I know where I need to be and that I have my materials all packed and ready to go.

10:00pm – Lights out! Time to rest up so I can do it all again tomorrow!

Diane Soboski

Senior Assistant Director of Admissions

What’s New at Holy Cross?

Monday, November 7th, 2011

One of the most common questions we get asked on the road while traveling as Admissions Counselors is “What’s new at Holy Cross?” This year, there have been a few changes to the campus. For starters, the newest dormitory on campus, Figge Hall, is officially open! The townhouse style residence hall is the new home to many current Holy Cross seniors.  Each apartment accommodates four students with two bedrooms, bathroom, kitchen area and common space. Senior year and a brand new apartment? What more could you ask for?

The new Hogan Courtyard provides students with a bigger open green space on campus. Several tables and chairs have been added around the courtyard and as classes have begun, I’ve noticed more students congregating in the area to grab a bite to eat with friends or to sit outside and enjoy the nice weather while studying!

Cool Beans 2, a great place to get coffee and snacks, has been transformed into a “Starbucks-like” coffee shop. Located right in one of our main academic buildings, Stein Hall, Cool Beans 2 will be a great place to chat with a professor, meet up with friends, or just re-charge before that grueling mid-term exam!

If you haven’t been to campus, fall is a great time to visit. Check out our schedule (http://admissions.holycross.edu/visiting/tours-information-sessions) to come for a tour of campus. If you have already been, come back to check out what’s new at Holy Cross!

Nicole Zervos ‘09

Assistant Director of Admissions