This Sunday, March 5, admitted students interested in Math and Science will be attending the third of six Crimson Compass events, which will allow students to have an overnight visit that speaks more to the actual Transy experience than the more traditional one-on-one overnight visit.
Over the rest of the semester, the admissions office will be hosting overnight events for students who have recently been admitted to Transy. Each of the 6 events, which are split up by academic areas of interest with two exploratory events for students who are more unsure of what they want to study, will host 50 students who will be housed overnight in the current empty rooms in Bassett Hall. At these events, admitted students will be able to stay overnight with other admitted students, where they will have more freedom to experience what a typical day and night at Transy is like with other students who may also soon be their classmates.
“It came from data that we have about students who visit Transy, and it’s that we know that students who come and do a visit with us and stay overnight are more likely to come here than students who don’t,” said Assistant Director of Admissions, Sarah Guinn.
With these events, Transy has the opportunity to host 300 students, which will give them the possibility to get ahead on the process that it takes to become an actual enrolled student at Transy. While they are visiting campus, they will be able to purchase parking passes with DPS, work with Human Resources on filling out work study paperwork (if it is included in a student’s financial aid package), and take the academic advising survey first year students have taken in past years during August Term. The Admissions Office hopes that this will help admitted students with the process of transitioning to enrolled students but that it will also enable the Admissions Office to have more time to continue recruiting students for the next class.
“We have been spending a majority of our summers instead of working on recruiting the next class, working with our enrolled, deposited students on getting them from deposit to ready to move in. And that’s great, and we love those students and want to help them, but we also need to dedicate more time to recruiting that new class,” Guinn explained about the hopes she has for the outcome of the events.
Along with becoming more acquainted with the resources at Transy, the Crimson Compass events are allowing the admitted students to start to make friends with other potential students, which in turn is helping them identify whether or not they can see themselves being a Transy student. Guinn speaks of a photo she has of four students hugging each other before leaving the first event after agreeing to room together in the fall.
“They’re starting to build that identity as a class,” Guinn said.
With the introduction of each of these resources for students Guinn explained, “It’s all about kind of what we’re trying to do, which is help students connect with each other, connect with faculty, connect with the people who are going to be their people when they decide to come here in a way that’s fun and engaging.”
Very few other colleges and universities are hosting events like these to help recruit students. Some universities, such as UK, tend to try to get students committed early by having them fill out housing forms and paying deposits before the May 1 college decision deadline; however, the admissions office wanted to find a way to grab the attention of admitted students in the way that UK is able to do but through more ethical means that do not put pressure on the students to commit before they are ready to.
“So that was kind of another facet of this program: ‘how can we give them that sense of committing earlier without putting pressure on them if they do need until May 1st to decide’” Guinn explained of the motivation for the Crimson Compass events.
Guinn explained that some students even committed to Transy and made their deposits during the event, and others made the decision to attend throughout the week following.
“We also want to let them know that if they’re ready for us, we’re ready for them,” Guinn said.
With events like these involving a large group of high school students who are mostly minors, there tends to be a fine line between providing the structure that they need to remain safe while also give them the freedom they need and are expecting to have as college students. Participating students must sign three different agreements: one is a form that leaves students liable for any damage they may do to the rooms where they stay (which is the same as the forms all Transy students must fill out and sign before moving into any Transy housing and after moving out), the second agreement is a waiver with emergency contacts, allergies, or any other types of special needs, and the third is an agreement of behavioral expectations, which states that if any expectations are broken, such as if a student leaves campus without permission, disciplinary actions will be taken, including rescinding a student’s admissions.
These measures allow for the student hosts to have an easier and better experience with the prospective students.
“The student hosts are primarily volunteers, so we want to make sure it’s a fun and pleasant experience for them too,” Guinn said.
If interested in being a student host for one of the next three Crimson Compass events, contact Sarah Guinn at email@example.com.