We’ve been using an on-line application for a bunch of years now. In the early years, many applicants still used a paper application, but nearly no one does anymore. (In fact, I don’t think I read any paper “apps” last year. The experience tends to stick in our minds because it’s so uncommon. Rarer still are hand-written application forms. I can’t say I’m sorry to see them go!)
Sadly, that doesn’t mean we’ve gone paperless, and there’s still a steady flow of mail to the office and documents on the printer. We’re trying, though, and even if we can’t rid our office of paper-based processes, we use far fewer mailings to reach out to our applicants than we did in the past. Of course, until applicants actually apply, we need to count on them to provide an email address, but that’s no different than the need for a mailing address in the past. (If you want to receive up-to-the-minute information on Fletcher and Admissions, make sure you have connected with us.)
Even much of our summer correspondence with incoming students was via email or the web site. That marked a real change from past years, and I think our highly-mobile student body appreciated the flexibility that electronic transmission provides.
And where we might not succeed in ridding the office of paper, we’ve also become aware of the impact of Admissions travel on the environment. If you go to our travel page, you’ll see our message that, “Carbon emissions from Admissions Office Admissions travel have been offset through Native Energy.” Carbon offsets may be an imperfect way to confront the impact that we all have on the environment, but it’s certainly one positive step that an office can take.