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Yesterday was fun. After the fair at Bowdoin, I joined about ten students and a rep from the career office for dinner and conversation. I’m hitting the road now, directly back to Fletcher, where Kristen and I are going to hold an information session for Tufts undergrads. Back to more varied blog topics on Thursday. Meanwhile, here are some pix from Bates and Bowdoin.
Just a super quick post today. I’m sitting in a hotel room in Auburn, Maine. In about an hour, I’ll head over to Bates College for a grad school fair, and then zip over to Bowdoin College for a fair there. With Colby College yesterday, it’s a three-fair wander up and down route 95 at a beautiful time of year. I’ll try to share some pix later.
How I convinced myself that last Friday/Saturday were the 25th and 26th is unclear to me (particularly given that I was writing on Thursday the 17th), but that’s what happened. Simulex will actually take place this week. All the details, for those more firmly rooted in time than I, can be found on the website. (Thanks to kind blog readers (and colleagues) who didn’t point out my befuddlement.)
But while I’m on the subject of all the many things going on around here that keep our heads spinning, I encourage you to take a look at the Fletcher calendar. If you’re planning a visit, you may be able to build one of the weekly events into your time here. Even if you’re not planning to visit, you may want to get a taste of what’s happening. There’s a lot on the calendar, even as students are taking midterms this week and next.
I’ve worked as the Admissions Office link to the PhD program for several years now, which makes it a little strange that I write so rarely about the program or admission to it. The reason, I suppose, is that the program is small and we review only about 70 applications each year — a tiny portion of our applicant pool, and yet a lot of applicants relative to the handful that we ultimately admit.
Today, about 10 prospective PhD students are signed on to visit Fletcher. We’re offering a focused information session, and the visitors can choose to interview, attend classes, and also do all the other things that visitors like to do when they’re here. It’s a loose schedule that enables them to seek the information they need in order to decide if Fletcher is a good place to pursue their advanced studies.
Meanwhile, I needed to line up students to conduct the evaluative interviews. I hesitate to steal time from PhD students. They tend to have a lot going on, and we have as much of an interest in pushing them through the program as they have in motoring along. Nonetheless, they’re very supportive of Fletcher in general and the PhD program in particular. It’s a real pleasure to connect with them whenever the opportunity arises.
Maybe I’ll try to write a bit more about the PhD program in the future. But you can always send questions, either as a comment on this blog post or by emailing us.
It’s hard to believe that today we kick off the long admissions season that will run until May 2014. A few applications for January enrollment are already complete and waiting to be read, while others are hot off the printer this morning. We expect the final flurry will arrive during the day today and will pop out of the system tomorrow. With staff travel continuing until at least the end of October, and many of our current activities focused on newly arrived students, sitting down with a pile of application files will be a welcome reminder of what’s coming up ahead.
During the summer, I received a blog question that I never answered. A reader asked about the length of the admissions cycle. Although it’s possible that the reader was looking for different information than I’m about to provide, I’ll use this post to outline a broad timeline.
I’m going to work backwards from the very end of the cycle for September 2014 enrollment:
Applicants who are admitted to Fletcher for September enrollment need to reply to our offer of admission by April 20.
Applicants who apply by our December 20 (PhD), January 10, February 10, or March 1 deadlines, will receive admission decisions as well as scholarship decisions before the end of March. (Precise date always a little fuzzy until it actually happens.)
Applicants who apply by our Early Notification deadline of November 15 will hear their decisions by the end of December (without scholarship decisions). Some EN applicants will learn that the Admissions Committee has decided to reconsider their application in the spring.
As you can see, the length of the cycle will depend on where you start it. Some applicants have already started working on their application form, arranged an on-campus interview or uploaded an online one, submitted their standardized test scores. Others are only now researching graduate school options. The full process ends (essentially, except for waitlist activity) on April 20, but where it starts is up to each applicant.
For those applying for January 2014 enrollment, the cycle is much shorter. Applications are due October 15, decisions are mailed by November 15, and enrollment decisions are due December 1. Orientation begins January 8. A whirlwind!
The reality is that I don’t travel as much as most of my admissions pals. This year, I’ll be representing Fletcher at one large grad school fair and three small ones. The big one is tonight — Washington, DC Idealist. I’m off to the airport soon. Back tomorrow. In between, I’ll answer a zillion questions and be very grateful for flat-heeled shoes.
Are you going to be at the Idealist fair tonight? Please come by and say hello. I’ll be accompanied by one current PhD student, one recent alum, and one alum who has been working for a few years. I’m looking forward to catching up with them and, of course, to meeting lots of prospective applicants.
Here’s a new initiative worth noting. This year, in partnership with D-Prize, Fletcher launches The Fletcher D-Prize: Poverty Solutions Venture Competition. Starting off the yearlong activity, the Fletcher D-Prize will offer an “ideation session” this week for budding social entrepreneurs throughout the university. As planning continues for the competition, I’ll be reporting back on the blog. For now, the competition’s Fletcher sponsor, the Institute for Business in a Global Context, is spreading the word via twitter. (
#FletcherDPrize and #FletcherEntrepreneur.)
It’s natural that applicants want to ask questions of real-live students, so this year we’ve launched a “Connect with a Student” feature. If you are interested in connecting with a current Fletcher student, email firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
- intended degree program
- areas of interest, such as potential Fields of Study or career goals
- any specific questions you would like answered
The students who review the inbox will reach out to our Admissions Ambassadors to find someone whose interests match yours, if needed. (General questions will, of course, get the quickest response.)
September is three-quarters vaporized already and the October 15 deadline for January enrollment is only three weeks away! January enrollment has traditionally been limited to the MALD program, but this year — following a re-think — it’s an option for MIB students, too.
“Januarians” are always a special subset of the community. Their Fletcher careers put them in contact with three different classes, giving them an extra broad network. They also have the opportunity to pursue two different internships during their two summers, or they can use one summer for an internship and one for another activity, such as career-related language study. There are some real pluses to starting midyear.
Of course, there are some negatives, which mostly relate to being newbies when everyone else already knows the ropes, but the negatives are quickly overcome.
From an Admissions perspective, reviewing the applications that arrive in October gives us a good chance to get back into the application-reading groove. That it’s a smaller, more manageable batch of applications makes it all seem easy, and then it’s only two months before we can greet the new midyear students!
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