The Skill Sets that You Need to Get a College Admissions Job

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The admissions department at any college or university has an essential job – attracting new students to the institution and making sure they have a great impression of your campus right from the start. Working in college admissions can be a fun and rewarding job for those who have the right skill set. Read on to learn more about the most important skills that are required in college admissions jobs.

Phone Conversation Mastery

A college admissions counselor will be conducting a lot of their work over the phone, so being able to communicate effectively during phone calls is essential. As a college admissions counselor, you’ll be conducting interviews, answering questions, scheduling appointments, and providing information over the phone, so make sure you can speak clearly, get your point across, and listen closely. Some people feel uncomfortable talking on the phone, but like many skills, you can increase your comfort level by doing if often.

Overcoming Student Objections Verbally and in Writing 

During your employment as a college admissions counselor, you’ll likely deal with students who are unhappy with the decisions that the admissions office made. Compassion is essential in all college admissions jobs, as it’s a highly emotional time for students. It’s important to put yourself in the student’s shoes. Remember the feelings you felt when applying for college. Not getting into your first choice school is a nightmare for most students, so it’s necessary to have patience and understanding to help guide them through challenging times. You’re representing the entire university, so it’s important to be firm, polite, and decisive, whether you’re communicating over the phone, in person, or in writing.

Generating Student Referrals 

Referrals to your institution can create a steady stream of new prospects, so it’s important that you are able to create an effective referral program by working together with current students. Students who are already enrolled at your university can reach out to friends and acquaintances to get them interested in your programs if they feel passionate about attending the university. Drum up excitement, offer rewards, and find other creative ways to get current enrollees to spread the word about your university. Referrals are one of the best ways to bring new students to you, as they can increase student retention because they help to create a support network among students.

Mastering the Campus Tour 

A great campus tour can be the deciding factor in whether a student chooses your institution or goes somewhere else, so it’s important to master this skill. Of course, the university will recommend what students should see. If you’re giving an individual tour, think about what would appeal most to that particular student, whether it’s art galleries, sports facilities, or multimedia labs. And in the case of group tours, keep it general. The dining hall, the library, social gathering areas, and event spaces are all great spots to show off. And talk it up, too! Tell your audience what you personally like about each spot on the tour. Know what the most attractive features of your programs are and what makes your campus better than other options in the same area, price point, or field of study.

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Gaining Student Commitment

Remember, it’s your job to fill the incoming classes, so you want to make sure that you have a certain number of students committed to attending your institution in the fall. But getting a student to give you a firm commitment can be difficult as they want to keep their options open as well. As a college admissions counselor, you have to be informative, persuasive, and earnest when speaking to prospective students and their parents.  You can almost think of college recruiter jobs as sales positions. You have to show your institution in the best light, and make people want to attend. The ability to sell your school is a necessary skill.

Processing Financial Aid  

Financial aid is key for so many students today, so it’s important to be an expert in all the ins and outs of this complicated process. Students will likely have lots of questions along the way, so being able to answer them right away will help students feel comfortable about coming to you for help. You can be a resource on what types of financial aid are available, how to apply for them, and what documentation you’ll need to qualify for it. This means you’ll need to have great research skills to learn all about the different types of financial aid available.

Nurturing Students to Start 

Incoming students will be undoubtedly nervous about starting college, and they’ll likely have a lot of questions about their classes, their living situations, adjusting to life away from home, and how to navigate the social challenges of higher education. As always, compassion is key during this transitional period. Students want to know that they’re making the right decision about which university to attend, so be open, honest, and authentic during every step of the admissions process. Encouragement, nurture, and understanding can help guide students towards success.

Modern-Day Student Follow Up 

Following up with students has taken a different direction in the past few years, and it’s important to be active on the platforms that students use the most. This will help you seem accessible and will make sure students know you’re there when they need you. Social media, email, and texting are all great tools to use to follow up with students. This means staying on top of what’s trending, learning how young people communicate, and being able to talk to a diverse audience without sounding out-of-touch.

Want To Build Your Skills?

College admissions jobs require effective communication skills, an upbeat and understanding attitude, and a lot of knowledge in different areas of the college admissions process. If you’re looking to get a job as a college recruiter, it can be helpful to work on building your skill set to put yourself ahead of the curve. With our admissions academy, you can learn everything you need to know about how to succeed in college admissions, and train to get an admissions job now.