BY CATHERINE HINES – STAFF WRITER
If you have wandered to Boles Hall expecting to find the finance office and have been met by the welcoming admissions staff, this is why: they swapped buildings. Over the summer, a great effort was put forth to switch almost 35 offices from Boles Hall to Horky House and vice versa. The admissions office was quickly outgrowing its space on the first floor of Old Centre and so it moved upstairs and underwent several upgrades. In addition, the financial aid office moved to Boles provided an entirely new office as well as a larger room for meetings, thus accommodating more people.
Having the admissions counselors next door to the Welcome Centre makes it “close and convenient,” Welcome Centre Coordinator Alice Kaplan said. This switch was significant in the admissions process by providing greater communication to visitors about where they should be arriving as well as providing a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Prospective students spend a great amount of time at both Old Centre and Boles, as the tours start in one location and end in the other, and the move makes the visitation process less disorienting for visitors.
“Old Centre is our landmark, and if students are starting their campus tour there, we want it to look nice,” Director of Student Life and Housing Ann Young said.“Centre is known for doing things well and preserving our history.”
Centre hired a consultant to come in and evaluate the experience of visitors and prospective students, who gave feedback which suggested such a move take place.
“While it is too early to tell, from the financial aid perspective, we anticipate the extra space to be helpful with more care being taken for private financial conversations,” Director of Financial Aid Kevin Lamb said.
It is too early because the peaks of the operations for these offices arrive in October and February through April. Centre hosts about 3,000 visitors each year and as such these updates have helped with the efforts to keep people coming in and feeling welcome. According to Kaplan, several visitors have commented that their visits have been “organized, well-put-together, and welcoming.”
“The visitors have a large lobby in which they can grab a cup of coffee, a snack, and read literature,” Kaplan said.
Kaplan is happy with the changes and thinks that having the Admissions office so close gives visitors a more pleasant experience.
The move took a lot of hands, time, and patience. The finishing touches are still being added. Overall “this move was a testament to how great the colleagues are here at Centre. Everybody jumped in and helped,” Lamb said.