Edward J. Connor '92

Dean of Admissions

Monday, January 24, 2011

I'm Moving

OK I am not leaving WPI...but my blog is moving...after my first 117 posts we decided to incorporate the blogs of our admissions staff members into one....Adam Epstein, Liza Michie (a new addition!) and I will all be contributing posts to http://wp.wpi.edu/counselors/

I hope that you'll continue to follow the happenings in our office!!


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Time to sign the letters!!

It's been a busy weekend already in the Connor household. A Christmas party last night, a breakfast with Santa this morning (my son had a ball!!), a bit of Christmas shopping, and of course signing the Early Action acceptance letters.

For all of you anxious to hear about your application to WPI we hope to have all the letters in the mail by Wednesday. I'll be busy signing letters over the next couple of days. I am about to start with the Ds...I've already signed dozens of letters headed across the US and around the globe...Worcester to Walpole and Peach Tree City to Paris!!

Hang in there...you'll be hearing soon.


PS - We still have about 130 applications that are incomplete...if you think one might be yours give the office a call on Monday.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

WPI Basketball on ESPN!!

Well I didn't think I'd ever see WPI basketball on ESPN, but last night it happened...almost:) The Men's Basketball team took on Harvard and while the game wasn't televised on ESPN the score made it to the ticker on ESPN!! It doesn't often happen that a Division III basketball team gets coverage (in any way shape or form!) on ESPN, but actually it was the second time in the last 3 years.

Unfortunately both times were in losing efforts. In addition to the Harvard game, WPI was featured when Bobby Knight set the all-time coaching mark for wins in men's college basketball in 2007. WPI has the distinction on being on the losing end of Coach Knight's first NCAA basketball victory when he was coaching the Army collegiate team.

So what about last night? Keep in mind that Harvard just beat Division I Colorado and only lost to Michigan by 3 points...so this seemed like a mismatch for the ages!! When all was said and done I will have to say I was very proud of my alma mater. Harvard held a double digit lead for much of the game, but when WPI had the chance to cut it to 5 points in the second half I thought the impossible just might happen...Unfortunately the Harvard team proved too strong and WPI went down in defeat 69 to 54. I think the Engineers surprised everyone with their strong outing and this contest should only help them in the Division III rankings in the weeks ahead.

All the winter sports teams are out to great starts and hopefully you can come out to a game!!


Friday, November 19, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!!

After a hectic couple of weeks in the Admissions Office I am looking forward to the Thanksgiving Day holiday. Our Early Action Rd 1 deadline passed on the 10th and we were excited to see our applicant pool continue to grow. We received just over 2,000 applications which represents a 20% increase over last year. We'll be busy reviewing the applications over the next few weeks. Some are sure to be read between the main course and dessert on Thanksgiving!! If you are interested in who will be reviewing your application you can learn more about our staff here...

If you are one of our Early Action applicants we'll be sending out decision letters in time for you to receive them by the 20th of December. Please make sure that your application is complete...we do need first quarter/marking period grades before we can review your application. We'll be reaching out to applicants and schools to follow-up on missing items, but don't forget you can check your application status online. You will need the login and PIN that were sent in your acknowledgement mail and letter. If you have questions just let us know!

We hosted our 2nd open house of the fall on November 11th and were pleased to see almost 500 students in attendance. The weather cooperated and we were able to provide a traditional fall New England day for all of the guests in attendance from outside the area:)

Last but not least we will be launching a new Admissions web site tomorrow. This is phase one of a two-part project. You'll notice a new admissions home page and redesigned pages on all levels of the site. Next time you visit admissions.wpi.edu be prepared for something new and exciting!! If you are a frequent visitor you won't notice many changes to the architecture and the links off of the home page...most things should still be easy to fine. Phase two will include some tweaks to the architecture and some new/refreshed content on may pages of the site. Be on the look out for phase two early in 2011.

I've worked closely with Julie Chapman and Adam Epstein in our office on the web project. We worked in conjunction with the WPI Marketing and Communications Office over the last few months and we are all very excited with the results. I appreciate all the hard work and time to pull the project together. Please consider sharing any feedback by e-mailing me or commenting here on my blog...

I wish you and yours a very safe and happy Thanksgiving.


Monday, October 25, 2010

New Sports and Recreation Center Taking Shape

October has been a busy month in the Office of Admissions and on campus as a whole. Our staff has been busy visiting high schools and conducting interviews around the globe. We'll visit about 300 high schools in October and interview over 200 students away from campus by the time the month ends. We had a great open house on Columbus Day with over 1,100 visitors on campus. It's hard to believe that the fall recruitment season is starting to wind down already.

On campus the first day of classes for B-term kicked off today and all of our students were back from fall break looking a bit more relaxed. In addition, today our new sports and recreation center reached another major building milestone with the start of steel erection for the building’s structural frame! The first steel column was placed on the southwest end of the building (below Morgan Hall and near the running track).

The next milestone is scheduled to happen on Thursday November 4th as we begin to erect nine 216-ton pre-cast concrete “ribs” of the Natatorium. If you are in the neighborhood come by and check it out!!

After 5 months of working “in the hole on the hill”, it will be great to start to see the structure rise up and the building take shape over the next several months.


PS - Don't forget our Early Action Rd I deadline is just around the corner...November
10th...call or e-mail with any last minute questions.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

October In the Office of Admissions

Well after a long hot summer the last couple of weeks have been damp and chilly. September is typically one of the quietest months for visitors to WPI as everyone is busy returning to school and getting into the new routine. Given the weather and the rainy tours probably a good thing!! That will all change with our first open house of the year next Monday. We are expecting about 400 students and 1,000 visitors overall...extended forecast looks good:)

In addition to September being a quiet month for visitors, there are many days when the staff offices are dark. From mid-September until mid-November most staff members are traveling across the US and around the globe meeting with counselors, families and students. As we speak there are WPI Admissions Staff in Louisiana, Minnesota, Maryland, New York, and Connecticut.

If you come for a visit in the next couple of weeks you are likely to find Julie Chapman or me in the office, along with another counselor or two in between their recruitment trips. However even I get out of the office a bit as well. Last week I was off to St. Louis for the National Association of College Admissions Counselors Conference. This is the "main event" each year for the profession.

In addition to a couple of thousand admissions counselors, the conference welcomes hundreds of guidance and college counselors, as well as many companies with educational related products. It was a short trip...2 nights...but a busy couple of days. Yes I did squeeze in a short steamboat ride on the Mississippi, but in addition got to attend a couple of sessions, meet with a reporter from CBS Moneyline, touch base with some vendors we team up with, and connect with colleagues at many of the other technological universities across the country. In addition several schools (MIT, Carnegie Mellon, RIT, U-Miami, WPI and others) hosted a dessert reception for guidance counselors from across the country. I was pleased to see over 200 guidance counselors in attendance. A good time was had by all and hopefully the counselors learned a bit about our schools as well.

That was my excitement for the fall...although I will be in Framingham, Maynard, and Lincoln next week. Maybe I'll see you there:)


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Brochures, Photos and the Web

I trust that many high school seniors return home everyday to a mailbox full of college brochures. Yes, I have seen the videos on what happens to them, including the video of a young man weighing everything he had received. Now I will say WPI probably does contribute our fair share, but as many schools we also spend a lot of time connecting with students electronically. Whether it is e-mail, Facebook, or our own website we try to provide important and pertinent information to prospective students, families and the counseling community.

I am pleased to share that we are working on a new undergraduate admissions web site and we hope it will be live in the next 5 to 6 weeks. This is an exciting project for us and we do hope that everyone will be excited with the results. I am spending a fair amount of time on the project, and even helping out a bit with photo shoots...(see above right). One of the featured elements will be our new virtual tour, Eye on WPI, which recently went live. I hope you are enjoying the virtual tour and that you'll find time to check out the new web site as well!!