I’m grabbing a few minutes in between assignments during our Open House for admitted students. I started my day with my favorite task — checking folks in — and now I have a few more minutes before it’s time to answer questions during our open office hours. To greet the visitors, we’ve decorated the Hall of Flags with extra Fletcher banners, and brought in balloons and jelly beans and others of the many products that can be ordered in more-or-less Fletcher orange. Right now, all the visitors are tucked into sessions for their degree programs.
It’s not an easy task to increase the School’s population by a third, even only for a day. The solution: offer a zillion different activity options and keep everyone moving. At 11:05, those who aren’t visiting the Admissions Office with questions may be at a panel discussion with current students, a Career Services presentation, any of five classes (Political Economy of Development; Islamic Banking and Finance; Public International Law; Applied Microeconometrics; Accounting for Profit, Non-Profit, and Government Organizations), or roundtable discussions on International Environment and Resource Policy, or Business in Practice at Fletcher. Whew! Similar line-ups are offered in the blocks starting at 12:30, 1:55, 3:20, and 4:30. It isn’t only the Admissions Staff who need to put their feet up at the end of the day! (And no feet need elevating more than Liz’s, as she has spent the last couple of months setting all of this up.)
Despite the pace, admitted students who visit report they are able to gather substantive information that helps them make their decision on where to pursue their graduate studies. Plus, it’s fun. Who wouldn’t want to spend a day living the life of a student without needing to worry about exams or papers?
The first of the question askers has now arrived, and it’s time for me to spring into action! We have a busy afternoon in front of us.