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Growing up in New Jersey, I had never heard of Juniata before. While I was in high school, students were always talking about big state schools and other public universities—but small schools were never mentioned. It wasn’t until my high school hosted a “college and career fair” back in 2015, that Juniata College became a name that I would never forget.
As I was walking around my high school’s “college and career fair” I noticed that the tables with Admissions Counselors from state schools were overcrowded with students trying to talk to them. As I was walking, I noticed one table that had nobody standing around it—and that table had a banner hanging from it that read, “Juniata College.” I decided to give this school a try. As I approached, the Admissions Counselor from Juniata greeted me with the biggest smile that I had seen that day and they enthusiastically welcomed me to their table. They told me about Juniata’s “Program of Emphasis (POE)” system, which allows you to individualize your degree and make it your own. Then, the Admissions Counselor told me about Juniata’s immersive learning environment. Immediately I was awestruck by Juniata—the Admissions Counselor was enthusiastically helping me, the curriculum seemed personal, and the community appeared to be extremely friendly.(more…)
I interviewed with Terri Bollman-Dalansky for the student assistant admissions counselor position in the middle of the Summer over zoom in 2020. I had a nice shirt on and tried to find a relatively blank wall to set up my laptop in front of. I think in my head I had hoped that “normal life” would resume in time to get back on campus and meet perspective students.
After learning that the pandemic was far from over, I realized that being a student interviewer would look different compared to friends who had the job in previous years. When I found out that I had the Juniata Associate position I was still planning on spending my Fall semester at Raystown Field Station. Being remote from campus and with the limited number of prospective students coming to Juniata, myself and the two other student interviewers were not able to conduct any interviews during the Fall semester.
When I was in high school, I realized that I wanted to be a dentist. However, I did not have the slightest clue how I was going to get there. The journey to become a dentist involves a variety of steps. Dental schools are competitive, looking for well-rounded, compassionate, insightful candidates. Before you plan to matriculate into dental school, you must take the Dental Admission Test (DAT), score in the competitive range, and apply to schools of interest. If a school likes your application and feels that you are qualified, they will offer you an interview to determine if you are the right ‘fit’ for that particular school. Once admitted, you must complete another 4+ years of schooling in order to become a dentist. Daunting, right? As a high schooler, I was overwhelmed.
At Juniata College, I was fortunate to receive ample guidance which made this process simpler. In my first semester, I met with Dr. Jim Borgardt who was assigned as my academic advisor. Dr. Borgardt advises all of the pre-dentistry students at Juniata, which means that he knows a lot about the admissions process for dental school. We meet every semester, helping to track my progress and keep me on pace for my goals. He also is an awesome guy who has made my overall experience at Juniata a great one.(more…)
Every time I tell someone that I work in the admission office, I’m immediately met with the statement “Oh, so you’re a tour guide?” I have never once given a tour (the fear of getting embarrassingly out of breath walking up a hill makes this an incredibly unappealing endeavor to me). My role in the admissions office is much more behind the scenes where I work directly under two of our admission counselors here on campus (shoutout to Kat and Molly!). There is so much that happens in the admissions office beyond just giving tours and mailing out acceptances every spring. As a student working in the admissions office for the first time this year, here are 5 of the biggest things that I learned about admissions that I never knew before.
1. Admission counselors are people too
I know from my own college decision journey I never once thought about the people behind all of the college communications I was receiving for three years. It can be easy to picture a faceless person behind the computer sending you thousands of emails and letters, but it’s actually the opposite. The admissions team at Juniata is full of a wide range of personalities who are incredible people you get the chance to know – take advantage of them and all they have to offer!(more…)