Whether it is a friendly smile, a wave hello, or helping out a family who needs directions, everyone can be a part of recruitment efforts on campus. Bryn Campbell, director of Undergraduate Admissions at Cabrini, says recruitment is everyone, and “It is really as simple as showing that welcoming community feel.”
COVID-19 had a major impact on higher education and the way colleges and universities plan for the future. With many schools experiencing difficulties, Cabrini hopes for a bright future for current and incoming students.
“We are still accepting applications. We see that there is a class that is going to graduate in 2027, but as an institution and under the guidance of President Drinan, we’re really rethinking how we deliver a college education and what that looks like so that we can be more accessible to as many people as possible,” Campbell said.
New names, new faces
On March 10, Drinan held a town hall outlining a variety of positive news for the university, including recruitment efforts, new partnerships, and financial successes.
In a statement to the Loquitur, Drinan said, “Cabrini University intends to forge a path forward with clarity, transparency, and unity. And we are positioning Cabrini for the quickly changing higher education landscape by strengthening our foundation and securing our future, beginning with the reorganization and restructuring that commenced in fall 2022. Presently, our admissions counselors, with the support of faculty and staff, continue the challenging work in recruiting students for the class of 2027.”
While the pandemic put a hold on some recruitment efforts, Campbell and her team are bringing back some exciting events for future Cavaliers. Overnights and “Cav for a Day” visits allow prospective students to experience life on campus. For overnights, Admissions partners with Student Engagement to hold events, a sleepover in Casey House, and the chance to attend classes the next day. Cav for a Day matches students with classes that align with their interests.
“The idea is to get them to really feel what it’s like to be a Cabrini student as much as humanly possible,” Campbell said.
The Admissions department attributes a slight decrease in applications to its change in partnership with EAB, a one-size-fits-all recruitment company. Cabrini now works with Two Ocean, which Campbell believes offers a more personalized solution.
“They go to a college or institution and really get to know them and decide what they need, not what everyone needs. We love them for that. They are really tailoring it,” Campbell said.
Campbell said the EAB partnership brought a lot of “soft applications” from students who were not serious about Cabrini.
Much to celebrate
Drinan also explained some of the university’s financial successes. In the same statement to the Loquitur, Drinan said, “The Office of Development and Alumni Affairs continues its grant success, adding $13 million in the last four years, and currently managing 37 grants worth nearly $8 million. These grants continue to enhance the students’ experience at Cabrini, whether it’s combatting food insecurity, allowing the opportunity for students to travel to Zambia for cultural immersion and partnership building, or pursuing education goals by ARC students.”
$5.5 million of the almost $8 million in grants is allotted for the Department of Education to help bring K-12 teachers to take graduate courses at Cabrini. These teachers are all area professionals who have a high number of students learning English as a second language, and the grant money will cover their tuition and supplies.
Grantwriting is not the sole responsibility of Chisholm and her team but also all administrators, faculty, and staff who see a need in their department. Chisholm made a point to say that even students can have a say in advocating for their needs on campus. “The departments identify needs … and we try to find a funder that fits that.”
Such was the case in the communication department, which recently received a $117,000 grant. “In the case of communication, it was from the George I Alden Trust, a funder who gave money previously for … anatomy and physiology courses,” Chisholm said. “Because we did such a good job stewarding those funds we could reach out to them again and ask them for funding for the communication department.”
Dawn Francis, associate professor and chair of the department, explained, “We wrote to the Alden Trust asking for money to be used to purchase equipment for our communication center. So, the video studio, the control room, and to do upgrades on the installed equipment.”
While the equipment that can be rented out to students is always kept up to date, the updates to the installed equipment will be a great way to keep the department competitive with other schools.
Campbell said, “A welcoming community is one of the many reasons people will choose Cabrini. We have the academics, we have the resources, and we do incredible work. So, just continuing to showcase all of those pieces is the key, but everyone can do it in one way or another … We are here, we are still taking applications … we aren’t going anywhere.”
Correction: We incorrectly identified the name of the company Two Ocean. We apologize for the error.