Laurie Hurley is the director of admissions at Fletcher. Here, she shares thoughts on the process of reading applications.
While our applicants are busy traveling the globe, your applications do a bit of traveling as well. A main component of admissions work is the reading, analysis, and selection of the very best candidates for admission. The irony is that none of this work actually takes place in the office between 9 and 5. Rather, the members of the Admissions Committee complete most of their reading at night and on weekends. So while you’re consulting to businesses in Europe, coordinating development aid projects in South America, teaching English in Asia, serving in Iraq, or combating global warming around the world, here are some of the places your applications have visited.
For the last three weeks, I have done some very productive reading during my daughter’s swimming lessons. While I normally prefer absolute quiet to read and concentrate, I’ve found that the din from splashing at the local YMCA pool is ideal. Not to mention the very tropical temperature!
On the last two Saturdays, I have cozied up by the fireplace at my favorite café. The trick is to arrive after the morning caffeine-dependent crowd, and leave before all the leisurely Saturday lunchers. The bonus of this location is the absolutely sinful Mocha Latte which only comes in large. (Oh darn.)
A benefit of working for years in the field of admissions is that I have many friends (and a spouse) who do the same kind of work. From time to time there is the occasional, “Let’s get together and read at my house.” While there is not much said during these reading marathons, the post-reading glass of wine reflecting on the day’s work is a great reward.
More likely than not, your applications are welcomed to the comfort of my home where I spend many early mornings, long afternoons, and late evenings reading in my favorite chair, at the kitchen counter, or on the floor.
While reading applications is stressful, demanding, and sedentary, it is still the part of my work that I look forward to the most. I truly appreciate the opportunity I have to understand the world through your eyes and experiences. I laugh and cry with you, and share your frustrations, defining moments, and remarkable achievements. My goal and purpose is to bring the best of you to Fletcher to learn from each other, while you build your skills and explore solutions to the most challenging problems in the world. I look forward to introducing you to each other. Please keep doing all of the amazing and meaningful things you are doing, and I am happy to continue reading in all my favorite places.
My ten minute break is over. I need to get back to an essay about peace in the Middle East.
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