If a student hasn’t applied yet, but is interested in a program on campus and has more questions, what resources does admissions and the university offer?
We always reach out to every student who submits an inquiry online or who visits with us at a college fair. I usually follow up that conversation with an email, phone call or text depending on that student’s preferred method of communication. We always advise to schedule a campus visit because we know a lot about the programs, but also because a meeting with a faculty member in the student’s area of interest is so beneficial. If they can’t come to campus, we usually try to provide them with an email for a faculty member; many times they end up asking questions that are best answered by admissions or the professor, so we bounce back and forth helping them. We also now accept students early in their junior year so they can start planning ahead.
Students can also do their own research and we are happy to answer questions along the way. If students want to ask quick questions, we have the general social media accounts, but the admissions counselors also have their own accounts to help reach out to students and answer questions.
As a graduate of WWU, what is it like guiding prospective students through the application process and helping them learn about The Woods?
It never gets old, and is really exciting! I was just talking to a student the other day about the day I called him to tell him he was accepted – he had just woken up and was so excited to get that call. Stories like that make my day. I remember when I was going through as a prospective student and was nervous to ask my admissions counselor questions because I felt like I should know the answer, but that’s what she was there to help with. That’s what I am here for now as well, to help future students with any questions they may have. I also think helping schedule and getting the most out of campus visits is so important. I came to Autumn at the Woods as a prospective student since I was interested in the Equestrian Science program so that event is still so important to me.
Becoming a counselor that is focuses on the Equestrian Science program is very special to me, because I can tell the students my own experiences with the classes. While things may have changed since I was a student, I can give them a real prospective of what the major is like.
What are some of your favorite “fun facts” about The Woods?
I love not just that we have horses on campus, but the amount of show-quality horses we have. We have over 150 horses here and the caliber of them is amazing – just across the road in the barns are world champion quarter horses, Gran Prix jumpers, American Royal champions and high-level dressage horses.
The relationships I get to make with alumni in my position are also amazing. I am travelling to work at a pony club with a 1980s grad in a few weeks and I am so excited to meet with her and imagine what this place looked like while she was here and even before that. I love hearing about the history of William Woods, like some of the fun things that used to happen between The Woods and Westminster College.
As an admissions counselor, you travel to college fairs and other events – what are some of your favorite places to go?
Recently I got to go to the Youth Charity Horse Show in Springfield, Illinois and I did not know much about it beforehand. The kids there were so amazing; very competitive, but also so friendly. If one rider did not have spurs, another kid would offer her an extra pair and run them over to her. It was amazing to see that as the future of the industry.
Right now, I just got back from the National FFA convention. FFA was a big part of my high school career so it’s near and dear to my heart. I got to take two students with me and one of them was honored at the convention. We were in Indianapolis for four days and I got to talk about William Woods to all of the students. It’s a great opportunity to talk about our pre-veterinary program. I also love going back to college fairs near my hometown. I am fortunate to get to go to so many big horse shows and make so many amazing connections with alumni and just in the horse industry in general.
What is something that makes the William Woods experience unique?
I like that a student can come here and be a lot of different things while they are here. They can double-major or have different minors, for example. You can be an Equestrian Science and Business Administration major. You can do Business Administration and also a Theatre minor. Students can do these and still be in a sorority or fraternity, or in so many other organizations on campus. They don’t have to fit into one certain mold while they are here. They can be a business major that works in the barn during their free time so they can also have the opportunity to ride. We have so many students who get involved in so many things and when they leave their resume is like eight pages long and that’s awesome. Watching the students grow throughout their time here after I helped them come to William Woods is the best feeling ever. It’s nice knowing they are leaving William Woods with a really well-rounded education.