What is an ASV?

In admissions, we tend to use short hand for many things. Acronyms abound in our world. Some need explaining, even when you know what the letters stand for! Let me tell you about our ASV’s!

One of the most helpful kinds of visits when a student is admitted is one that allows a student to see many facets of campus in one day and one that provides a student a chance to choose what they want to do during the visit. These are two features of our admitted student visit days (ASV’s.) During this day-long visit, admitted students and parents become part of the campus life. Activities during the day include:

  • Presentation by the academic college/school to which a student is admitted
  • Campus tour
  • Lunch on campus
  • Residence hall tour
  • Information sessions by several dozen academic sessions presented by academic departments
  • Opportunities to talk with personnel from student financial services
  • Tour of the athletic facilities
  • Presentation by current UVM students
  • Sessions highlighting career services and study abroad

Students and parents often ask what is the difference between the ASV and orientation. The ASV is designed to give the kind of information students need in order to make a decision about attending UVM (or to reinforce the decision made.) Orientation is designed to help students take the next step to enrolling at UVM – select classes and become more familiar with the campus.

If you plan to attend an ASV, be sure to review the schedule sent in advance. Because there are three blocks of time when a student needs to choose what they want to do, it takes some planning. I often recommend that students and parents consider attending different sessions during part of the day to cover more ground. Also know that there is more offered than students and parents can attend – sometimes sessions of interest to the student are offered at the same time. I have worked at four other universities and UVM’s ASV is one of the most comprehensive programs for admitted students. The program begins at the Sheraton that is next to campus. The academic sessions take place across campus. The headquarters for the program after the academic session in the first block is the Davis Center.

If you haven’t registered to attend, I encourage you to do so in order to make a good decision. Rooms at the Sheraton do sell out so plan ahead by being sure to make hotel reservations if needed. If you end up not staying at the Sheraton, the program will still begin there (and parking will take place there in order to accommodate the number of cars.)

We can’t wait to see you on campus!

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Celebrating diversity in our community

Tonight was a reminder what a great commitment UVM has to exploring and educating ourselves about issues of diversity. I sat in historic Ira Allen Chapel with a full house of students, faculty, staff and community members listening to actors Danny Glover and Felix Justice who performed “An Evening with Martin and Langston.” Each actor helped the audience experience the words and shared their commentary on the impact that these two legends had that shaped where we are today. Questions from the audience included asking Mr. Glover’s and Mr. Justice’s views on the state of voting rights for marginalized citizens and and what they think Martin Luther King Jr. would say about the Occupy movement in the U.S. today. The program ended with the audience joining the UVM Concert Choir in a rendition of We Shall Overcome – it was a great community moment. This event was part of a week-long MLK celebration, an annual event on UVM’s campus.

UVM is an exceptional place because we provide our students with a place to discuss, debate and wrestle with complex issues – in the classroom, in the clubs and organizations in which they are involved, and in settings like tonight. We work hard to bring individuals and groups to campus that represent a wide spectrum of perspectives important in developing critical thinking and diversity competencies.

Danny Glover was asked about his appearance on the TV show, Brothers and Sisters….and he started his response with his signature laugh.  It was a great night at UVM!

January 15 application deadline extended

Today is the application deadline for fall admission to the University of Vermont. When this deadline date falls on the weekend, especially a holiday weekend, it raises questions about when the application can be submitted over the weekend. To alleviate questions and concerns about meeting the deadline, we have extended the deadline to Tuesday, January 17.  Students interested in applying for fall admissions to UVM may still submit an application anytime on Tuesday as still be considered on time.

Once an application is received, we send an email within 48 hours of our receipt of an application with an ID number that can be used to check if items are missing from the application.  Our admissions decisions are sent by March 16 (some are completed and students are notified on February 15.) Our applicants who applied as VIP candidates will receive admissions decisions on a rolling basis.

The application cycle for students applying for fall 2012 is nearing completion. UVM has received nearly 20,000 applications for this fall signifying that many students are excited about what UVM offers for undergraduates. We are excited to read these new ones, as we have enjoyed reviewing ones that were received in the early part of the cycle.

If you are still putting the finishing touches on the essay or on other parts of the application, there are still a couple more days to finish. We look forward to receiving your application!

Show Me The Money!

This quote, made famous by Cuba Gooding Jr. in the movie Jerry McGuire, is heard in many arenas. I see it quoted frequently when discussing scholarship awards as if they can somehow be equated to sports agents. Scholarships and the importance of receiving them are a reality in the college selection process these days. Institutions have different approaches to awarding scholarships and they often reflect the institutional priorities.

UVM works hard to attempt to keep the balance between offering students money based on past achievement with having resources to provide financial aid based on financial need. To that end, we do feel that it is important to acknowledge the academic talents of a segment of our admitted applicant pool.  Our scholarships are based on information included in the application, specifically academic performance as measured by grades, class rank and SAT or ACT scores. While letters of recommendation and extracurricular activities are used in the admission decision, they are not used for awarding general merit scholarships.

My advice as students receive scholarship awards:

– Avoid the trap of believing that one school wants a student more based on the size of the scholarship award. The scholarship amount is a combination of resources available and where there student’s academic record falls within the pool of qualified students applying this year.

– Do your homework about scholarship renewability. Is the scholarship just for one year or for all four years? What are the terms for renewal – grade point average, program of study?

– Scholarships are not negotiable (despite what the popular media portrays.) Colleges and universities tend to offer their best merit scholarship possible. At UVM, scholarship awards are changed only if there was an error or if information was not included in the admissions application. If new information is available (new test scores or grades) that significantly change a student’s academic record from the point that the scholarship was awarded, share that with the admissions office to find out if new information can be considered. At most schools, there is a point at which new information cannot be considered and the scholarship awarded. At UVM, information that was received at the time of admission is used in awarding a scholarship.

– Merit scholarships are typically separate from need-based financial aid (including grants.) Students who wish to be considered for any additional assistance from UVM should be sure to complete and submit the 2012-13 FAFSA by the February 10 priority deadline.

We sent scholarship awards in December to students admitted as of the middle of December. Students who have recently been admitted and eligible for scholarship will receive a scholarship notification by mid-January; then on a rolling basis every two weeks. Scholarship notification comes in a letter.

Questions about scholarships can be directed to the Office of Admissions or to Student Financial Services. Congratulations to our admitted students who have received a merit scholarship award!