Admissions Committee Minutes, November 16, 2015

Ad hoc Admission Committee Meeting

November 16, 2015

8:30-9:30 a.m., Career Center, King 108

Attending: Steve Shapiro, professor of physics, Michael Dutch, professor of business management, Alfonso Abad Mancheno, associate professor of foreign languages, David Hildreth, professor of education studies, Arlene Cash, vice president for enrollment management, Erin Kelly, director of admission, Cyndie Basinger, assistant to vice president for enrollment management

Steve opened the meeting with a moment of silence.  The discussion reviewed the recent Admission Open House on Sunday and Monday, November 8-9 and non-matriculant research prepared by Credo.

Overall response by faculty to the recent Open House was positive.  Lunch in the cafeteria appeared less organized than the October 23 event.  Faculty and students were not sure whether they should go to the Gilmer Room or eat in the main dining hall.  Also, table tents with names and departments would be helpful for faculty we know plan to meet students for lunch.

The library location for the academic department fair continues to be popular. Suggestions for improvement to the fair include clustering tables by division and providing maps for faculty and students.  Magnetic name badges for faculty with academic credentials would add a professional look and be well received.  Arlene would like larger first name font with academic program information added.

Invites to the fair will be sent to department chairs and copied to the division heads.  Where gaps by departments exist, division chairs will be asked to help fill in the blanks.

It would be helpful for all faculty and staff to see the schedule of activities in advance.  Possibly include an announcement in the Buzz with a link to the day(s) activities.  In addition, a short email with bullet points of call to action items for faculty could be sent to the department chair.

Hosting the event on a weekday gave families the chance to see current students mixing between classes, interacting at lunch, and class sessions.  There will continue to be positive energy from faculty if we can continue to host these events on a weekday.

Erin encourages faculty to help plan dates for next year’s Open House events.  The first Open House will be held during Homecoming on October 1, 2016.

Open house follow-up includes a hand written note from a tour guide, a phone call from an admission counselor and a thank you email for visiting.  The email is sent to parents and students with a link to Survey Monkey to provide feedback.  Comments from the November Open House indicated that the classroom experience and academic fair provided a good sense of how academic life works at the College.  The majority of respondents were more interested in Guilford after their visit.

Steve spoke to a parent who is experienced in the college search process.  His comments were that Guilford stood out from the rest of the schools he’s visited due to the Quaker ethos on campus and the faculty interaction felt genuine.  It made for a memorable visit for the family.

Next year, Erin plans to provide more activities for overnight students and more parent activities for Monday Open Houses.  She would also like to include more experiential learning experiences for class options.  She felt the academic fair in the library and offering a mega tour were positive changes for the programs.  David suggested offering time for parents to have coffee with faculty. Steve suggested timing Open Houses with other campus events such as an astronomy event or theatre production, and encouraging student organizations to host activities during afternoon hours.   Erin is working on incorporating these suggestions for spring.

Arlene presented research from the recent Credo review for 2014-2015.  These results were shared at the Budget Committee to help inform the discussion on tuition and room & board.

Almost 60% of non-matriculants are attending other private colleges.  Ninety-two percent of students would have enrolled if they had received greater than $6,000 in additional aid.  Financial and fit were reasons 25% of students said they chose to not attend.  What we need to do is help students see ways they can fit at Guilford.  Utilizing student organizations to host activities during open houses may offer prospective students opportunities to see how they too can fit at Guilford.

Comments from the research point to concerns stemming from the negative publicity over the budget deficit and faculty cuts, customer service, financial aid, and facilities.

A reduction in tuition can be perceived as desperate so we need to do a better job to educate families about the actual cost of a Guilford education.  While CCE students pay less, we don’t advertise the reduced price.  Arlene would like to be straight forward with adult pricing strategies.  If adults pay less to help Guilford serve our community, why not other underserved groups?

Arlene is in the process of designing a scholar program for merit scholarships.  The program will incorporate funding with a programmatic aspect.  Scholars would receive merit aid and value such as shadowing or working in their area of interest.  As an example, the Presidential Award would be called Mendenhall Scholarship for Integrity and students presented this award would be known as Mendenhall Scholars.  This program is similar to what David is working on with the President for Education Scholars.

The next meeting is November 30 at 8:30 a.m. in King 108.