At the Indiana University Bloomington, you helped increase incoming student diversity by 45% in six years. What is your vision for admissions and recruitment at the College?
My mission in enrollment management is to make higher education and the admissions process in general more accessible to all students, especially those who have historically been excluded from higher education. My vision here at CofC is to streamline our recruitment efforts and make our processes more efficient. Exploring our opportunities through operations, processing, marketing and recruitment is always the path forward.
What changes do you see on the horizon for undergraduate college admissions in general and how/who we recruit?
Most of us in this profession are aware of the “cliff,” the drop of high school graduates nationally around 2025–27 due to lower birth rates. The African American student population has been and will remain flat, but there is growth among the Latinx/Hispanic population, particularly in the South. As a result, every institution will shift or has been shifting their recruitment models. This is why we’re thinking about market share, developing new markets and reimaging our programs and marketing to attract students to CofC. The best strategy over the next decade is just to maintain your market by increasing your market value.
What’s the most important factor in a prospective student’s application?
The best predictor of college success and retention is a student’s academic preparation in high school. The types of courses a student takes, the grades in those courses, a student’s grade trend throughout high school: A lot can be inferred through the transcript.
Are SATs necessary?
Both the College Board and ACT have audited their assessments to make these tests more inclusive of student experiences and more teachable. However, with standardized tests we must always ask, “Who is the standard?” For me personally, standardized tests provide more context about a student’s college preparation and success, but I don’t place a ton of value in them.
Biggest culture shock coming from Indiana to Charleston?
I don’t think I’ve experienced culture shock as much as heat exhaustion. I’m from the South, so I was excited to come back after being in the Midwest for 13 years; however, this Charleston heat and humidity is no joke. I don’t think anything can prepare you for it. It really grabs a hold of you and doesn’t let go. That honestly has been the biggest transition for me.
Class of 2025 By the Numbers
The largest freshman class in school history
- Size: 2,473
- States represented: 42
- Largest cohort from another state (N.J.): 193
- Countries: 15
- High schools represented: 1,111
- Most popular intended majors: 1. business administration 2. psychology 3. biology 4. marine biology 5. exercise science