Well, I can’t start a new entry this week without saying congratulations to the Boston Red Sox! Our staff members and co-op students celebrated the parade (which passed right by campus) by wearing our Red Sox gear this week. Here are a few shots...
I can't believe that it's November already - it seems like just a few short weeks ago the staff and I were preparing for the fall travel season and looking forward to meeting with prospective students from all over the world. This week, all but one of our admission officers will return to the office to attend an all-staff retreat and to begin our application review and evaluation training.
Each year before we begin reading and evaluating applications, we take time to update and retrain staff. We cover a number of topics including interpreting transcripts, test scores and recommendations and we spend significant time reviewing our ratings so that all staff has a clear understanding of how to apply these indices to each applicant. We then practice reviewing and rating the same set of applications until we all have the ability to recognize and appropriately identify strengths and weaknesses in each applicant. Our training is critical to ensuring that all applicants receive a thorough and quality evaluation. (I’ll write more about our evaluation process later.)
While we are preparing to begin the reading and evaluation process, we know many seniors are finalizing the list of schools to which they plan to apply. We also know that many seniors are trying to decide whether or not to apply to a school under an early plan. As an admission professional, I don’t encourage early application, unless the student has really done a thorough college search and has identified a school as a top choice. Many colleges and universities have begun to eliminate or limit their early plans when they realize that students are only applying to gain an advantage in the admission process. We have not had this problem at Northeastern and will continue to offer an early plan.
At Northeastern, we have early action which is non-binding. We implemented our early action program three years ago to provide an opportunity for students who were really interested in Northeastern and well qualified to receive their admission decision by January 1 of their senior year. Our early action program is for those students who have taken the time to learn about Northeastern and have decided that Northeastern is among their top choices for college. We want students who are eager to enroll at Northeastern and ready to take advantage of our experiential learning opportunities like co-op and study abroad. Applying early action is an indication of that interest.
For the last three years we have admitted a larger percentage of the EA applicant pool than we do from the regular decision applicant pool. While I am not able to definitively say that this will be our approach this year, I can tell you that we are happy with our EA program and don’t have evidence that students are applying EA to gain an advantage in our process. Students who apply EA and are admitted tend to enroll at Northeastern at significantly higher rates than those who apply regular decision. This is important to us as we want to enroll students who are NU eager. Whether or not we actually continue to admit a larger percentage of the EA pool than we do from the regular decision pool depends on the number and quality of applications we received. However, I can say that we will always want to admit those well qualified students who are eager to attend NU.
If you do decide to apply to Northeastern under our EA program, remember the EA deadline is November 15. If you have already submitted your EA application, remember to log onto NU Application Status Check to make sure we have received all of your documents. I’ll keep you posted about the process as the applicant pool develops.
Until next time…