Admissions: Recognizing Your Value in the Process
- How many students will we lose this year through graduation and attrition?
- Do we have enough students coming in next year to make up the difference?
- How many more do we need to achieve an increase in student enrollment and grow as a seminary community?
As Director of Admissions and Student Recruiting, these questions motivate me on a daily basis. However, the admissions process is not primarily about numbers; it’s about connecting the seminary’s story with the stories of individual students.
An important part of this is determining not just what story to tell, but how to tell it. Each year, the Association of Theological Schools publishes the results of its Entering Student Questionnaires. In 2012, when asked about how they learned of a school, entering students overwhelmingly pointed to pastors (16.0 percent), friends (15.7 percent), and graduates (14.0 percent). The school website was a close fourth, accounting for 10.8 percent of students. More traditional forms of outreach, such as mailings and brochures, figured in less than 5 percent of responses each. Thus, in educating students about Baptist Seminary of Kentucky, friends of the seminary, particularly alumni and pastors, carry far more power than any employee or any seminary-created publication.
The truth is that we need your help in bringing new students to BSK. An admissions office of one has neither the “person power” nor the resources to reach every student, but by combining our efforts BSK’s ability to attract and retain the best and brightest students increases exponentially.
Future versions of this column will include tips regarding recruitment as you talk with students about their future plans.
Here’s the first: recognize your own value. Whether or not you realized it before, the students you know are listening carefully to you and weighing your opinion about where to go to school quite heavily. What you say and do matters. Please take this awesome responsibility seriously, and consider using it on behalf of your friends at BSK.
Contact Jarrod Lopez at email@example.com or by phone at 502-863-8301 to talk about recruiting and/or to refer a student.
Jarrod Lopez, Director of Admissions