Admissions officers: What is the most memorable experience you’ve had in admissions?
Here is my video response to the question.
Although I’m not an admissions officer, one of my students had the following experience: During his interview he brought the 3 things I always recommend one have: a resume, a special essay entitled, “Why I Must Attend [Your college] “, and the coup de gras, a business card. He presented his resume immediately, and after about 15 minutes, he gave him the special essay. When it was all over, he turned to leave and did a 180 and said, “Let’s exchange business cards!” After he got his acceptance letter, he called the person who sent it and asked specifically what it was that made the final decision, and she said that when he left, the interviewer ran down the hall screaming, “Look what I just got (holding up the student’s business card)!” That was the decisive factor.
I interview for Brown as part of the Northern New Jersey Brown Alumni Schools Committee. I hate to say it, but my most memorable interview experience was when a candidate, a young man, showed up to the interview late and rather shaken. He needed to call his mother and have some water! Fortunately, he shared that he had gotten into an auto accident en route to our interview. I don’t know who was at fault and whether the accident was the result of nerves, but I did feel very badly for this candidate and tried to get him relaxed and on task as soon as possible.
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When I was applying at Edinboro university. I called and I had all my stuff faxed to him and the admissions counselor made an on the spot decision which was really good. however i ended up not going there. It was financially sound move.
Probably a few of the essays that I’ve read. One was written by a girl about her first sexual experience. I remember the first line was her internal monologue: “That was it?” That essay was passed around the office. Another was an essay I received shortly after 9/11, written by a Muslim student (who happened to be at a Catholic high school) speaking about his faith. In essence, it was a sort of preemptive attack against anyone who would try to challenge him on the basis of his heritage. Really gutsy at that time, and it said a ton about him. Obviously, if done correctly, the essay can really leave an impression.
My most memorable experience is the student and his or her family who arrive and have everything ready to go for the 1st day of class. Orientation, registered for classes, purchased books, checked out the classes, emailed professors with questions already, picked up parking decal, student identification card, and have lots of enthusiasm and a positive outlook for the semester ahead.
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