As Blogger-in-Chief for the Admissions Office, I have asked the staff to offer their observations. Kristen Zecchi, who joined the office less than a year ago, shares her thoughts this week. She writes:

As someone new to Fletcher and the admissions world, I must say that I am quite impressed by the number of documents that have come through our office in the past week. With the main application deadline (January 15th) having come and gone, we are now busy ensuring that applications, recommendation letters, and transcripts are all matched up with their rightful owners. Though the sheer volume can be overwhelming, it is tempered by the fact that we get to hear so many fascinating and unique stories throughout the process.

Unlike Jessica, who posted previously, I do not have new warm and cozy slippers to get me through this reading period. My tool of choice is an ever-expanding selection of teas. I find that if I reward myself with a steaming fresh cup after reading a stack of applications, I’m a more alert reader. When possible, the last file I have read dictates my next tea choice: An applicant who has just returned from South Africa might lead me to select rooibos, while an Indian applicant might inspire a cup of chai or Darjeeling. Earl Grey seems to work for many continents, while jasmine is the tea for our Chinese applicants (or, one of the many who has just returned from living there).

With my cup of tea nearby, I’ve found that one of the best parts of the admissions process is being able to do more than just read an application. It’s about being able to delve into the very unique and diverse experiences of our applicants and learn about a person who is committed to a career in international affairs.

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