Admissions issues a call for students

Adriane Hardin

Western’s admissions office is about to kick recruitment into high gear and they won’t even have to leave the Hill.

Admissions will begin using a system called telecounseling in which Western students will counsel prospective students by telephone.

“This allows us to develop a relationship with the students,” Admissions Director Dean Kahler said. “We want them to feel like this is a place they can build relationships at.”

Admissions officials want to match telecounselors with prospective students they have something in common with – such as geographic area, he said.

This would let the telecounselor address specific concerns a prospective student might have.

“We can have the student give a little testimonial,” Kahler said. “If one student is happy, that student can tell other students how happy they are about this school.”

Telecounseling is something Nashville freshman Jessica Barker would have benefited from.

“There were definitely questions I had that weren’t answered,” Barker said. “I think it would have been helpful.”

A new type of software called Campus Call will be used by telecounselors to track calls and schedule call backs.

The system is used at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, where Kahler previously worked.

Murray State University has used telecounseling for eight years.

“It has been successful,” Murray spokesman Paul Radke said. “Over the months our students will develop relationships with a lot of prospective students.”

The philosophy behind telecounseling seems to be the same for officials at Murray and Western: students educating students about their college experiences.

Kahler said admissions is looking to hire students who have a good knowledge of the university, effective communication skills, good customer service skills and a good personality.

Kahler said students must understand that admissions will be hiring telecounselors, not telemarketers.

“It’s not cold-call,”Kahler said. “It’s people who have already expressed an interest in Western.”

Students hired as telecounselors can work up to 20 hours a week.

Any student interested in applying for the position should contact the admissions office to get an application.

Reach Adriane Hardin at [email protected]