Recruiters set out on Spring Travel

Lindsy Neer

The Office of Admission’s recruiters will soon be leaving to go on Spring Travel, two weeks of getting Kent State’s name in the minds of high school students.

They will be traveling across their designated geographical areas, attending numerous college fairs and most of all, spending time getting to know high school students who might soon be Kent State students.

“Recruitment is not just attending college fairs and doing private visits to high schools,” said Jarrod Harchalk, an academic counselor who recruits in NYC, New England and Canada. “We seek to get to know our students, engage them in the process, and make Kent State a familiar name and campus to them regardless if they are 15 miles or 400 miles away.”

Spring Travel is at different times for all the academic counselors. Harchalk will soon leave on his, where he will attend nine college fairs and two countywide college fairs in Westchester County, New York. He will also be hosting two admitted student luncheons and one guidance counselor luncheon.

While many recruiters work out-of-state, there are also those who recruit from multiple counties in Ohio. Nick Hernandez handles Lake, Lorain, Geauga and Portage counties, and also does multi-cultural recruiting. By the end of his Spring Travel, Hernandez will have done 15 college fairs and two high school visits.

Katie Cope, the Chicago, Midwest, and Pacific Northwest States recruiter, will have attended 10 college fairs, one admitted student dinner and two guidance counselor lunches by the end of her Spring Travel.

Spring Travel is geared toward high school juniors who are still deciding where to apply for college.

“They just want more or less quick facts, more a general profile of the university,” said Laura Wilhelm, who recruits in Maryland, West Virginia, Delaware and a few counties in Ohio. “They aren’t ready for the huge sit down of discovering everything about the university.”

During their Fall Travel, the counselors build on the relationships they made with students in the spring. Recruiters like Harchalk, Wilhelm and Cope all host student luncheon dinners or lunches in the spring for students from the same out-of-state areas.

The students have time to see the university and ask questions, but they also get to meet students so they won’t be alone when they come to Kent.

“I’ve had students from these events keep in touch and decide to room together,” Harchalk said. “So, it’s a good networking event for them.”

Without Spring Travel, many of the recruiters might not have a chance to meet potential students face-to-face. This added contact with the university helps students feel at home before they even attend their first class, Harchalk said.

“Students I met last spring are my students who are admitted and planning on attending Fall 2010,” he said. “Many of us stay in contact with our current students and they and their parents know if they need anything that we are easily accessible.”

Contact Student Affairs reporter Lindsy Neer at [email protected].