Who’s reviewing your application?

If there’s one thing I know at this time of year, it’s that the college admission process is not an easy one. When I applied to colleges seven years ago, I felt a great deal of pressure and so much uncertainty; all the chaos of applying, followed by the months of waiting, made senior year one of the most intense years of my life. Now that college admission is my job, I’ve discovered something really interesting: the college admission process is not an easy one for those who make the decisions, either.

We know what’s riding on our decisions. If you think that admission professionals just sit behind closed doors and dispassionately dole out students’ fates, you have a very stereotypical but ultimately very wrong picture of selective admission. We read each application with a great deal of care, remembering that each file represents a unique person – we’ve all been through this process as students ourselves, and some of us have seen our children through it, too. We put in a lot of overtime hours and, believe it or not, go through a lot of stress and worry making sure we give every applicant a full and thorough look.

One reason our decisions are made in a committee is to make sure there are many voices at the table, many personalities and different ways of looking at things. Our combined experience is what makes the give-and-take of selective admission work. So want to know who’s reviewing your application? There are 13 of us sitting on the admission committee at Richmond. Here’s a little more about us:

4 of us are Richmond alumni.

9 of us worked in admission at other institutions before coming to Richmond.

4 of us have been in the admission profession for more than 15 years.

11 of us have pictures of family in our offices.

7 of us are right-brained; 6 of us are left-brained.

1 of us is left-handed.

5 of us have pets.

9 of us hit snooze at least once when our alarm goes off in the morning.

10 of us try to work out at least three times a week.

6 of us plan to run the Monument Avenue 10K in March.

6 of us are rooting for the Saints, and 6 of us are rooting for the Colts.

8 of us are coffee addicts.

10 of us prefer Coke to Pepsi.

6 of us have been through the college admission process ourselves within the last 10 years.

6 of us were denied admission to at least one college where we applied.

2 of us have helped our own children through the college admission process.

10 of us have filled out the FAFSA.

10 of us went to college at least two hours away from home.

4 of us were first-generation college students (our parents did not go to college).

9 of us considered finances a significant factor in making our college choice.

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  1. […] about the admission committee My recent “inside the admission committee” post seemed pretty popular, so I thought I’d share a little more about us — the people at […]

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