STARs program sees expansion with 43 new guides

They might walk backwards, but the Student Admission Representatives (STARs) program keeps moving forward by expanding to meet the needs of the admissions office and Bradley in general.

The STARs program has expanded from 68 STARs in 2011 to 78 STARs in 2012 to 94 today.  Of the 94 current STARs, 43 are new this semester.

Associate Director of Admissions and STARs Coordinator Cory Craig said the STARs program expanded to meet the increase in the number of campus visitors and the variety of prospective students’ interests.

“We want to ensure there is a wide representation of majors and areas of student life,” Craig said. “The broad representation [created by STARs] allows us to better meet the varied interests of our prospective students.”

STARs give tours around campus, make calls to prospective students, attend college fairs and promotional events in the community and help with various tasks in the admissions office.

To help Craig coordinate and manage the expanded program, the admissions office increased the number of interns from three admissions interns in 2012 to four admissions interns and one enrollment management intern this year. They assist in the training and preparation of all STARs and provide a link between the admissions staff and STARs.

“The increase in new STARS this year has given us the opportunity to assist in providing an in-depth training program to ensure that each individual can be an exceptional representative of the university,” said senior and admissions intern Navid Kassam.

STARs training consists of presentations by professors from various colleges, shadowing veteran STARs and interns on tours and a mandatory test on training material.

Freshman sports communication and political science major David Jorgenson said the genuineness of the admissions staff and STARs, specifically Jacoby Cochran when he toured Bradley, inspired him to come to Bradley.

Now, as a new STAR, Jorgenson hopes to have a similar impact on prospective students.

“A tour guide for a high school student can make or break a college decision,” Jorgenson said. “A guide who is lazy or doesn’t show much dedication to the job can really deter a student from a particular university. However, an engaging, personal and dedicated STAR can really make a difference on visit day.”