With one of Knox’s biggest events, Admitted Students Day, canceled as spring term moves online, the Office of Admission has been working hard to make sure prospective students don’t miss out on an important chance to get to know each other and the Knox community.
Kimberly Zimmerman has been working to plan Q&As with current students, a redesign of the Knox Office of Admission page and a ten day Admitted Students event. Although prospective students can’t physically come to campus, Zimmerman still wants them to be able to get a feel for the Knox campus and community before they decide whether to commit or not.
The Director of Recruitment and Outreach has asked current student volunteers and admission ambassadors to participate in Q&As every Monday in April. These events allow prospective students to ask current students questions over Google Meets to get a sense of the students, campus and experiences at Knox.
Sarah Colangelo is in charge of planning and moderating the Q&As. The senior assistant director of admissions reported that there were so many prospective students and questions in the first Q&A that not all questions were answered within the one hour time slot. 45 prospective students joined the first Q&A and 58 students joined the second.
In addition to the Q&As, prospective students are encouraged to take a virtual tour of Knox. This tour was offered before campus was closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic but was a second choice to being able to visit campus in person. Now, it may be prospective students’ only chance to see the campus before deciding whether or not to commit, so the tour has been revamped for use this spring.
Prospective students are being encouraged to stay in contact with their admission advisors for anything they might need. In an effort to keep in contact with prospective students and their parents, on April 20, Knox administration, including President Teresa Amott, will be participating in a phone-cast with prospective students’ parents to answer any questions they may have.
On top of all of this, Zimmerman has been planning a ten-day Admitted Students Days event. Prospective students will be able to get to know each other, talk with professors in different departments and get their t-shirts and mugs for committing to Knox mailed to them.
Paul Steenis is hoping that all of these events, even though they’re virtual, will help persuade prospective students to choose Knox. The dean of admission said that 155 students have committed to Knox so far, a higher number than usual for this time of the year. Although the number of students committing has slowed in the last few weeks, Steenis hopes to welcome a class of 350 freshmen to Knox in the fall.
Zimmerman and Colangelo found it challenging to showcase the feeling that comes with being on the Knox College campus online, but are making do with the tools they have. The biggest challenge that Steenis has faced thus far is the toll the current situation has taken on everyone, from students all the way up to administration.
Zimmerman and Steenis feel that the biggest win to come out of this situation is realizing that, even though everyone is apart, the Knox community lives on. Colangelo’s biggest reward has been to provide some level of comfort and support to the prospective students she’s counseling.