Private universities have been intensifying efforts to recruit top-notch students from across the country, and GW has gained national attention for its personal approach to admissions.
The Chronicle of Higher Education applauded the University in late October for its admissions representatives who work and live in three high volume regions, saying that their efforts reflect a nationwide trend of recruiters scouting out the best high school students around the country.
“The results have been remarkable in not only increasing application and enrollment numbers, but also in improving the recognition of GW among prospective students and high schools,” Executive Dean for Undergraduate Admissions Kathryn Napper said. “Now, some 10 to 12 years later, our regional offices are vital in meeting the ever increasing demands of interest in those areas.”
The three reps were hired by the University in the late 1990s, but the University said there has been a recent increase in students with higher scores and more competitive applications due to the reps, Joseph Greenberg, Danielle Toglia and Carol Conchar.
“In the Northeast, California, and New Jersey where there was significant populations, we wanted to increase GW’s visibility and increase matriculates to GW,” Napper said in an e-mail. “In the Southeast, we wanted to not only increase GW’s visibility but build and maintain a presence in states where students were at that time less likely to come to GW.”
Undergraduate student enrollment from California increased from 274 students in the fall of 1998, to 622 students in the fall of 2007, the most recent year statistics are available from the University. The jump makes California residents the fifth largest student population, up from the No. 9 spot in 1998.
Georgia, where Conchar does her recruiting, has seen the number of students more than double, from 63 students in 1998 to 132 students in 2007, according to University statistics.
“I usually spend my morning visiting high schools, my afternoon doing admissions interviews, and my evening attending college fairs,” said Toglia, who represents the Northeast office. “This is usually consistent from the beginning of September up until Thanksgiving.”
The representatives also said that when talking to students, they look for specific characteristics that they believe fit the mold of a GW student.
“GW has several things that set us apart from almost every other school,” said Greenberg, who was a professor at the University for 24 years before becoming an admissions rep. “We’re not trying to say we’re better than a different school, we’re just trying to find if GW is a good fit for that student.”