'G-Net' expands options for targeting potential students

Beginning this semester, the admissions office is working to improve the admission process and help prospective students become acquainted with the college and its offerings by implementing a new "G-Net: Geneseo Network" program to be run by current Geneseo students.

The new system is intended to expand and better organize Geneseo's outreach to high school students.

In the past, the admissions office has utilized volunteer student tour guides, overnight hosts and lobby hosts, who greet visiting families and answer questions about student life and the Geneseo experience. The new G-Net will retain these student opportunities in combination with three new ones: high school liaisons, who will work with the high school they attended and its guidance counselors; college class-visit hosts; and special-program hosts for new recruitment efforts such as Preview Days and Admitted Transfer Student Day.

The idea and implementation of G-Net was sparked by Amanda Neill of admissions, who ran many of her ideas by students to maximize the program's appeal. The program was conceived as a way to "really utilize the students that we have," said Neill. She added that in past years there have been many students who have been "willing to volunteer to do a host of different things."

With G-Net, interested students will be able to volunteer in different ways that cater to varying levels of availability and commitment. For example, students can volunteer to be a class-visit host, which can be a "huge help" to a prospective student, Neill said.

In order to encourage current students to get involved, brochures explaining G-Net were placed in all student mailboxes the first week of school. This is the first time admissions has reached out to students in such a visible way. Neill hoped students "realize that [student involvement] is a huge part of how we recruit our class." She said that the response so far has been very encouraging, noting that while freshmen interest has always been high, the number of upperclassmen wanting to get involved is unprecedented and "impressive."

The most innovative new element of G-Net is that of the high school liaison, created as "a method for prospective students to communicate with someone who knows exactly where [they] are coming from," said Neill. To further close the gap between college and high school, "Operation Inform" will host at Geneseo this fall between 100 and 150 counselors from high schools and other SUNY campuses.

Seniors Eleni Mickles and Sara Rusick, the student directors of tour guides, agree that the G-Net will help recruit student volunteers.

"I just think it's a really great program," said Mickles, noting that there is a "whole pool of student ambassadors to work from." She added that the increasing the number of male overnight hosts in particular is "so huge." Rusick agreed that G-Net "makes everyone more of a team."

Students interested in any of the positions offered by G-Net should contact Neill at neill@geneseo.edu or stop by the admissions office in Erwin Hall.