Student Senate hosted an Open Space about enrollment and recruitment at Goshen College on Monday, Oct. 28. The event was facilitated by Sharada Weaver, a senior and vice president of Goshen College Student Senate, along with other senate members who were in attendance.
During the hour, about 10 students participated by asking questions about various topics related to admissions.
Dominique Burgunder-Johnson, vice president for marketing and enrollment, and Linda VandenBosch, director of admissions, were at the Open Space to answer student questions and provide information about the recruitment and enrollment processes at Goshen College.
The majority of the hour was spent discussing the difference between the recruitment of athletes compared to non-athletes. Burgunder-Johnson and VandenBosch provided helpful insights into how the two processes differ from each other and the ways they are similar.
The athletic recruitment is done by coaches, who work closely with the admission counselors, but do not always receive the training that admissions counselors do, depending on the time of year they enter the coaching position.
VandenBosch commented that “coaches do tell us that recruiting of an athlete is different than the recruiting of a non-athlete.”
For example, if a prospective athlete visits Goshen College during the week, the admissions office will schedule a tour and meeting with them, but if they visit on the weekend, the emphasis is on team bonding, and a member of their potential team will be their tour guide and host.
Athletes were also described to prefer to keep their options open and only apply to a school when they are ready to commit resulting in many athletes entering the admissions process later than the non-athlete recruiting season.
Burgunder-Johnson also said that she really believes coaches are trying to find students who want to be members of the Goshen College community as well as athletes, but in some sports it is more difficult to find that combination, it all depends, “sport by sport.”
Other topics of conversation included concerns related to communication, misidentification of scholarship recipients, and incorrect emails in the admissions process. Burgunder-Johnson and VandenBosch apologized for the negative admissions experiences that many of the students in attendance voiced, and thanked students for their willingness to share their experiences.
VandenBosch noted that, “(Admissions department) can’t get better at what (they) do unless (they) know the things that need improvement.” and Burgunder-Johnson reassured attendees that there have been significant efforts made in the past few months to improve admissions.
Burgunder-Johnson said she, “feel(s) really confident that a lot of (admissions concerns are) getting addressed going into this new year,” and their projected view of the next few years is looking bright.