Thursday, July 14, 2011

What Questions might prospective students have for a professor?

Students are the lifeblood of an educational community. A more direct meaning to that statement might be, Students are the lifeblood of Coker College. The admissions process is what gets students into Coker and talking with prospective students is interesting and even a bit exciting.

Yesterday, for example, there was a family that made an appointment to stop by Coker on their way back home (to Staten Island, NY) from their Myrtle Beach vacation. One of the girls will be graduating in May and she is looking around at colleges in places she thinks would be fun to live - like South Carolina. The other daughter, will be a junior, and she was unhappily along for the ride.

One of the exciting parts of getting to talk with prospective students is seeing the effect of a campus visit. The daughter who was really anxious to get on the road and head home appeared to be really enjoying seeing the Coker campus as she ended her tour. She had sort of changed her mind about the visit.

Most of the admissions counselors and most of the coaches like to add some type of faculty connection into a visit, in case there are "academic" questions. Truth is that most prospective students, when they are thinking about college, are not thinking classroom -- they are usually focused on dorm room. Parents will often have some questions but, in truth, while they may be paying, they are not the ones who will be on campus.

So, without pressure of a faculty member across the table, what are some of the questions that you might be wanting answers to in the area of academics on a college campus? ________________________________________________________ Would love to see some answers to that question.

There are couple of areas on which I focus. For Coker, one of the major differences is the relationship that students can develop with faculty just because of the nature of the college. Classes are small. If a student misses a class it is noticed. When a student is particularly brilliant in a class it is remembered! A major part of the "community" of Coker is the ability to build real attachments that will become more important as the years go by. Coach Dave, for example, reminds his seniors that 'someday we are all 27...' A second area on which I focus is personal interest. I remind the student that college is going to be THEIR education and that they should develop the experience by being open to the new possibilities that the privilege of a college education brings to them. The reason for the question at the top of this blog post is that I am looking for information that will help me know this particular audience even better.

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