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Admissions Summer Open House 2011

Posted: 07/15/2011

Skidmore’s Admissions Summer Open House Tops 200

More than 200 interested students, along with their families, attended the Skidmore’s Summer Open House on July 11. (Last year, the number was 185.) Prospective students came from 21 states, Washington, D.C., and four countries. The states: Arizona, California, Connecticut, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, New Hampshire, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Virginia, and Vermont. The countries: Canada, China, Vietnam, and Uganda.

In spite of unusually muggy weather, the crowd was “very enthusiastic,” according to co-organizer, Associate Director of Admissions Jane Reisman. The program included music from a student band, Bailiwick, an introduction from Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid Mary Lou Bates, an overview of the First-Year Experience from Professor of Government Beau Breslin, Q & As with a spirited student panel, information on applying for admission and financial aid, and student-led tours of campus.

In her remarks, Bates discussed the importance of creative thought at Skidmore, the breadth and depth of the curriculum, including its relatively unique pre-professional offerings, close faculty-student relationships, the strength of the visual and performing arts, and Saratoga Springs. She also issued a challenge to the audience: “I challenge you to find another liberal arts college where two of the most popular majors are business and studio arts.”

Breslin, who runs the First-Year Experience program (FYE), said the intense level of faculty involvement is what differentiates Skidmore’s FYE from many others. “We will instruct, advise, and mentor each student in our respective seminars,” says Breslin. “I get to see my students three-to-four times a week over the course of the fall semester. So I get to know them well, and I understand the arc of their career and the arc of their interests. The advising and the mentoring piece is a very big deal.” He suggested to the audience that they ask how advising is handled when they visit other colleges. He doubted that many other institutions could measure up in terms of the depth and quality of the personal faculty-student connection.

The student panel, of course, is the main event since the panelists are living examples of the nature and promise of the Skidmore experience. They included Logan Frederick ’13 from Virgina (Geosciences and Math), Leo Cancelmo ’12 (Pyschology and Music minor) and Alta Montilla (Psychology and Religious Studies minor) from NYC, Dan Armas ’14 (Studio Art and Business) from Florida, Sarah Bagshaw ’11 (Chemistry) from Vermont, and Chase Kurokawa ’12 (International Affairs and Business minor) from Hawaii.

One of the better questions was “What’s the one thing all Skidmore students have in common?” According to Alta, the answer is ”creative and very, very passionate.” Chase put it a bit differently: “We have this oomph. Not swag. More like gusto. Creative gusto. Our motto here is Creative Thought Matters.”

For those who missed this open house, you may want to consider Skidmore’s fall offerings:

  • General Open Houses: October 10 and November 11
  • Dance Open House: October 29
  • Studio Art Open House: October 29
  • Science/Math Open House: October 30
  • Theater Open House: November 19

Click here for more information about these programs.