Currently viewing the tag: "Admissions Committee"

If, like me, you’re pursued through elevators, shopping malls and supermarkets (or, in my husband Paul’s case, Tokyo hotels) by an endless loop of holiday songs, you may think that this post’s title refers to snowmen and trappings of the season.  No!  The most wonderful time of the year is….Committee Time!

The Committee on Admissions reviewing fall 2012 applications will meet for the first time today.  The meeting kicks off the part of the year when most (all?) admissions staffers agree we’re doing our most interesting work.  We have three returning student Committee members who will help us train the five new students and three new professors.  The Committee’s task is the same each year, but every group has its own vibe and I’m looking forward to learning what this one is all about.

Time to grab my coffee and head over to the meeting.  It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

One of the questions we’re asked most often is: When Fletcher’s admissions committee reviews an application, what is it looking for?

To answer the question most simply, we are looking for students with potential for academic excellence and professional success, who will add to the community. Of course, pursuing this goal is not that simple.

The bottom line for the admissions committee is that every admitted student must be able to succeed at Fletcher. For some applicants, we need look no further than a strong undergraduate record and supporting standardized test scores. For many applicants, though, the assorted credentials might point us in different directions. To assess these materials, we look not only at the undergraduate GPA, but also at the courses taken and trends across the four years. Standardized exams (the GRE or GMAT) can provide context for our review. Recommendations also help to fill in the blanks.

Once we feel confident an applicant would succeed as a student, we consider work history, international experience, and the applicant’s goals. There is no minimum acceptable amount of experience, but we want all students to have a background that will serve as a strong platform on which they can rest their studies and future careers.

The truth is that we want every student to have great academic skills. Where I believe Fletcher gets it right, though, is in avoiding formulas and in considering the whole applicant. We strongly believe that people continue to learn after they have left their undergraduate academic training. By looking at the whole application, all its many parts, we can best assess each applicant’s potential.

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