Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 – Butler University. The leaves had begun to change on this charming urban, yet tucked away Indianapolis campus. I drove separately from my colleagues on the charter bus, so I arrived a few minutes early. The staff was very warm and enthusiastic about welcoming us to Butler University. Prior to this tour, when I thought of Butler University, I thought of two things: One – Basketball…basketball from the movie “Hoosiers” and from their mighty presences in the Final Four. Two – Clowes Memorial Hall. For decades, this Butler theatre was the cultural center for visiting plays, lectures and concerts to the City of Indianapolis. Before the big domes and professional athletic teams…Butler brought culture to the city. Mrs. Patrick Take-Away: the School of Pharmacy is mighty and the Butler bulldog is darling!
Wednesday, September 17th – 6:45 am. I boarded a charter sponsored by Indiana University for their college counselor day. They put together an outstanding program that was both informative and enjoyable. Mr. Terry W. Knaus, Senior Associate Director for Recruitment & Outreach, was dressed smartly with a suit and bow tie as he narrated while we were en route discussing the detailed schedule and valuable IU information. Our walking tour, IU student panel, academic information, special guest speakers and visit to the football field and ONTO (yes, in and on) the IU basketball court provided a comprehensive tour. Hoosier Nation did not disappoint. Although IU is a thriving university, the vast array of degree choices allow for a close-knit community amongst the learners and faculty. This campus truly is beloved by its students and everyone wears IU spirit gear. Mrs. Patrick’s Take-Away: average major class size is 1,300 (schools within the school)
Thursday, September 18th – Independent Educational Counselors Association (IECA) Luncheon at National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC). Yes, IECA held a luncheon at one of their competitor’s conferences – brilliant! In a gorgeous ballroom downtown Indianapolis, IECA invited me and a few handfuls of other IECA members to host the luncheon. So, I put on my IECA button and walked out to the lobby to take my post with the assignment to welcome the College Admission representatives to the luncheon. Over 510 College Admission Directors and their teams joined us for the luncheon. I was randomly assigned to host a table which held Admission Directors from High Point University, Elon University and Assumption College. IECA really went all out and put on a fabulous luncheon and allowed for professional collaboration amongst my colleagues and the college/university Admission Directors. This personal and intimate collaboration is vital when pairing students with schools based upon social, emotional, physical, spiritual, intellectual and financial needs of each student. Sure, visiting the college campuses are the most helpful, but meeting admission representatives face-to-face is also very informative. Mrs. Patrick’s Take-Away: Confirmed that this year’s order of importance in college admissions is ONE – grades & curriculum, TWO – standardized test scores and THREE – the personal essay.
Late afternoon, I contacted my DePauw University Admission Director and jumped in my car heading towards their campus about an hour from downtown Indianapolis. One of my clients is considering DePauw University for swimming and I hadn’t officially visited their campus. Graciously, they welcomed me to join a scheduled tour and I arrived just in time. I know DePauw has an excellent reputation as a fine Liberal Arts school in Indiana. Yet, I didn’t expect it to be so beautiful, charming and relevant. Their comprehensive curriculum really provides depth and structure for their students, many of who are student-athletes. DePauw University has a clear sense of self and seems to provide a nurturing yet academically rigorous environment for its students…75%, which are members of the Greek system. Mrs. Patrick’s Take-Away: there was a Vineyard Vines custom DePauw section in the charming (connected to a Starbucks) campus store.
Friday, September 19th – Indiana Independent Colleges and University breakfast at the Skyline Club. First, let me say that the Skyline Club is one of the most sought after venues for prestigious events in the City of Indianapolis. There were approximately 100 Indiana College Admission Directors who co-sponsored this event and invited 100 Independent Educational Consultants and High School Guidance Counselors from across the country. The breakfast was delicious and the sun rose over the scenery of the downtown skyline, it was beautiful. I had the pleasure of speaking in detail with University of Evansville and the University of Notre Dame’s Admission Directors. One of my clients is applying to Notre Dame, so it was the perfect opportunity to discuss the student and ask them to keep an eye out for the application and to call me with any questions. Mrs. Patrick’s Take-Away: The State of Indiana is an educational gem for higher learning…good people attract good students!
September 18th-20th – NACAC’s 2014 Indianapolis National Conference. Educational Sessions included: The Common Application: Equity, Access and Integrity, NCAA Eligibility Center’s Academic Evaluation, Make Your Stories Pop: Strategies to Help Students Share Their Own Unique Voices in College Applications, A Closer Look at Early Action Admissions: Inside the College Admission Office, Structuring Your College Counseling Office: Different Models and the Pros and Cons of Each. Mrs. Patrick’s Take-Away: With over 110 educational sessions, it is vital to remain current when working in the field of College Advising…an edge to Independent Educational Consultants as most high schools do NOT (and cannot financially) send their guidance counselors to training. Yet, the students and families need assistance in planning for college more than ever!