This past week, Keene State College held their fall Open House. According to Director of Admissions Peggy Richmond, the purpose of the open house was for admitted students and other students who are interested in KSC to come and experience what the college has to offer.
Currently, KSC admissions for the 2018/19 year are 100 applications ahead of where they were at this time last year. Richmond attributes this to the fact that admissions has sped up the process on their end. “I think that you know we are not up in applications, so it’s not that we have more to read. Some of it has to do with receiving applications and how we are communicating with students and getting them to complete their applications quicker,” Richmond said. She said that admissions is reaching out to students by calls, e-mails and postcards.
Richmond said she is very excited about the new things the office has put in place to change the application and reach-out process, but one huge addition has been the new pamphlet that comes to students who express interest in KSC. The pamphlet consists of 40 things to do before you graduate from KSC. Students, staff and faculty were asked what they thought was most important to be on the list. Then, Richmond and her admissions team took the top suggestions and turned them into 40 things to do before you graduate. This is the first thing that students get, and Richmond and the admissions department are building the entire admitted students campaign around this concept.
At the actual Open House event on Friday, Dec. 1, when prospective students arrived, they were first taken into the Mabel Brown Room of the L.P. Young Student Center for a welcome speech and performance by KSC’s a capella group Chock Full O’ Notes, as well as a student panel. The students were then taken on a tour, which ended with a meal in the Zorn Dining Commons. There were also two fairs, one regarding the different majors offered at KSC and another about all the services that are offered here for students, like the Information Technology Group and Financial Aid Office.
One prospective student took advantage of the opportunities the open house had to offer. Prospective student Maddie Brennen of Barnstable, Massachusetts said, “The Open House was good. There was a student panel and an a cappella group sang and we took a tour, and there was information booths all set up. It was good; I got to meet a lot of people and learn about my major.”
Many other prospective students took the chance to learn about the various majors KSC has to offer. Prospective student Cole Demirjian said, “Keene has a lot of the majors I am interested in: athletic training, education, marketing, and I was glad I got to learn about them.”
Richmond said, “The big difference in our Open House this fall is the student participation.” This year, she said they are really focusing on getting students who are thinking about coming to KSC to connect with current students on campus. “We just try to get the incoming students connected with our students as much as we can during the day because we really do believe that that is going to be the best way for them to learn the most about Keene State,” Richmond said.
She explained that she is really trying to promote the idea of connecting possible incoming students with current students, but a big part of the participation is also coming from the Interim President of KSC Melinda Treadwell. “It’s the presence that she has and how she draws people in that, I felt, made a really big difference in the program so far,” said Richmond.
Richmond said she hopes to keep admissions up not just for the school and her admissions team, but also for Interim President Melinda Treadwell. “We really want to get the steady enrollment and have a strong class for it to be her first year as president [and] for her to be able to say, ‘This is an amazing class.’ She is so supportive and is there for us all the time, so we are going to meet our goals.”
Molly Spooner can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org