Posts Tagged ‘contact’

“Interview” is Not a Four-Letter Word

Wednesday, August 13th, 2014

It is actually nine.  Whether  we are meeting students on the road or on campus,  we seem to hear the same question over and over again: “What can I do to increase my chances of acceptance?”

Our answer?  “INTERVIEW!”

Though interviews are considered by many high school students to be superficial, self-indulgent monologues professing one’s greatness to an intimidating potential employer for personal gain,  it would be more appropriate to title Holy Cross Interviews as “Conversations,” because that is essentially what they are: two people in a room chatting about anything and everything.

The interview is not the time to determine if a student is a credible candidate; it is a time to put a name with a face and get to know each candidate on a more personal level.  It is not about proving yourself to our office, it is about adding more information to your own application.  Twenty to thirty minutes of conversation can add volumes of information to your application that is impossible to convey on paper through the Common Application, your letters of recommendation, your college essay, or your SAT scores (should you choose to send them).  Read more about scheduling an interview on- or off-campus,   and schedule one before we run out of spots.

 

The College Search: Facts, Figures, and Feelings

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

Kate StewartThere’s an endless and oftentimes overwhelming supply of resources out there to help you through your college search. You could camp out in the College Guide aisle at Barnes and Noble for two years and never make it through half the books. You could pull all-nighters clicking through Naviance and scouring every ranking posted by US News & World Report and The Princeton Review until your eyes bug out of your head. You could spend so much time on each college’s website that you know exactly where to find obscure information like how many people the dining hall seats.

 

And don’t get me wrong, statistics are certainly important. You should figure out what the academic profile of an admitted student looks like in order to predict whether a college is in your “range.” You should calculate a college’s distance from your home and decide how far away you’d be okay moving. You should research the size of the student body and the average classroom size and figure out whether those numbers seem comfortable or intimidating to you.

 

But ultimately, your college choice is not formulaic. You can’t plug a set of numbers into a magical College Calculator and expect it to spit out your Perfect College. The facts and figures can provide you with a great starting point and help guide your search in the right direction, but they won’t be what convinces you that you can call a college “home” for the next four years of your life.

 

That’s where the intangibles come in. Nothing beats visiting a campus and getting a feel for it by exploring it and soaking it all in. I’m not saying that you need to get “that special feeling” that a college is “the one and only” for you as soon as you step foot onto the campus; this is not a fairy tale, after all, and you do need to keep some options open. But as a human being, you will naturally have reactions to being in a new environment, and you should pay attention to those. After all, you know yourself better than anyone else.

 

Go on guided campus tours and attend information sessions, but also find more informal ways to discover the energy, vibe, and identity of a school. Walk through a quad and sense whether students seem excited to go to class. Sit in the campus coffee shop and eavesdrop on students’ conversations with one another (without being too creepy, of course). Take a moment to peek at bulletin boards in the student center to investigate the weekly and weekend goings-on. Take some pictures of the campus to jog your memory later on and maybe even jot down some notes for yourself before all of your many campus visits start to blur together. Finally, consider sharing these thoughts and observations with friends and family who are supporting you through this process. Chances are they’ll be able to either see the sparkle in your eyes or read the lack of enthusiasm in your voice.

 

Kate Gimourginas

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

Eight Reasons to Log on to One of HC’s Online Chats

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

1.  Show your interest in HC without having to climb the hills

2.  Ask the question you were too embarrassed to ask during your campus tour or information session

3.  Hear about the “real” HC from current students

4.  Perfect your speed reading skills–our chats move fast!

5.  Get the inside scoop on the admission process from admission counselors

6.  Socialize with other prospective students.  You may be classmates someday!

7.  Work on becoming a master typist.  Those college essays won’t type themselves!

8.  Have your parents think you’re hard at work on your homework when you’re really having a great time with us

Our next online chat for prospective students is Wednesday August 11 from 7pm-10pm EST

Lynn Verrecchia

Associate Director of Admissions

The College Fair: Where Do I Start?

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

NicoleZervos.BLOG2This past week, I’ve been doing a few college fairs at high schools and at national events. College fairs are a good way to start seeing what types of colleges are out there, but they can also be extremely overwhelming. Students often come up to our table and not know what to do or say. I thought I’d share a few pointers to get you started:

 

 

  • Know that we’re here to talk to you. Our job as Admissions Counselors is to talk to students about our institutions. Don’t be afraid to approach us. We’re all friendly people and we want to tell you why our college is the place for you.

 

  • It’s OK if you don’t know anything about the school. One of my favorite parts of college fairs is talking to students who know nothing about Holy Cross. Often, by the time we’re through talking, they’re signing up for the mailing list and excited to come for a campus tour.

 

  • Go beyond asking about the numbers. While it’s ok to ask about average GPA or test scores, that type of information is easily accessible on the internet or in a school’s literature. Try to make your questions as specific as possible. Ask what makes an application successful or find out what campus life is like, how well the professors interact with students, if internships are offered, etc.  

 

  • Filling out the card does matter. A lot of students who are already on our mailing list ask if they need to fill out an inquiry card. While this is not the case at all schools, we do keep track of the type of contact you’ve made with Holy Cross. We want to give you credit for putting in the effort to talk to us at a fair. Printing up pre-made labels is a quick way to avoid writer’s cramp at college fairs.

 

If you see me at a college fair this spring or next fall, don’t be afraid to stop by and say hi! Ask me a question and I’ll be more than happy to answer.

 

Nicole Zervos ’09

Admissions Counselor

How Can I Connect?

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

JamesRichardson.BLOG2By now, if you’ve made it this far in the search process, and this deep into the Holy Cross website, you’ve “done your homework” in a manner of speaking.  You’ve researched various schools and you know you like Holy Cross, but may still be wondering about a few things, and need some additional information.  So, how else might you connect with us to gather those final pieces of information you need?  No worries, there’s still time, and lots of ways for you to accomplish this.

  • As my colleague Amanda Juriansz mentioned in her most recent blog post, an interview is one of the most important “connections” you can make throughout the process.  Interviewing is one of the single largest expressions of interest you can make in the College, and one of the easiest ways for you to tell us you’re really serious about your application here.  Interviews are offered here on campus until the end of the year, or with an alumnus in your area if that’s easier.  SO, as Amanda said, “What are you waiting for? “
  • Chat it up with us! We will be offering several online chats over the course of the next several weeks and months, so login and chat away with Admissions Counselors, Holy Cross students, and other prospective applicants.  The next online chat will be happening November 4 … we’ll hope to see you online from 7:00 – 10:00PM EST, or for any portion of that time you may be available.
  • Meeting students is always a great way to connect with a college and get a good feel for what life is like there.  In our Meet Some Students section online, you can actually specify your criteria, and choose who you want to connect with!  Whether its connecting with another student from San Francisco, or someone from Visual Arts, you can choose with whom you correspond.
  • You can also make some additional connections with us on staff, or with our Admissions Senior Interviewers through the ‘contact us‘ link on the Admissions page.  We all have photos and email links there – – whether you recognize us or not, make a connection!

And finally, the absolute best way to “connect” is to apply!  Applications for Early Decision consideration are due here in the office December 15, but ED is a rolling process, and we’ll be reviewing applications as soon as November 1st, so feel free to submit your application as soon as it’s ready.  Regular Admission applications are due January 15.  Apply … and get connected!

Good luck!

James T. Richardson
Associate Director of Admission

I Want an Interview… and I Can’t Get One.

Thursday, December 11th, 2008

Lynn
Two months ago I wrote a blog about the importance of the interview.  Many of you got the message.  You probably got the same message if you attended an information session on campus or if you met a Holy Cross representative at your school this fall.  You nodded, you understood, you made a mental note — and then you missed the deadline.  Or you called our office recently and found out that we are booked solid through the end of the month.  What now?  Remember not just that we told you to have an interview, but what we said about why.  We want to know you, and our full schedule does not change that fact.  But unfortunately, that fact does not change our full schedule.  So you may not be able to have an interview after all, but you can still help us to know you better.  Some students choose to submit a letter or e-mail “filling in the blanks” that may exist in the absence of an interview.  Such letters can provide additional information about accomplishments, interests and passions.  They can answer some of the questions an interviewer might ask.

If you write it, we’ll read it.  So start filling in those blanks.

Lynn Verrecchia
Sr. Assistant Director of Admissions