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Career Story: College Admissions Advisor

College Admissions Advisor

Job Title: Admission Advisor Of A College

Education: graduate of career/trade school in Medical Assisting/Secretarial

Previous Experience: Worked in Medical field for 15 years, Went in to own retail business 15 more years, Worked in job agency for approximately a year while continuing my own business.

Job Tasks: The organization I work for provides education for various programs in Associate Degrees, Bachelor Degrees and Master Degrees in on campus as well as online formats. As an admission advisor, my job is to match the right program for the right reasons and make sure it is the right time for the student to come to school. This is done through an interview process which entails asking probing questions in the lives of prospective students to determine how serious they are about going to school and what their dreams are once they have graduated from the program they are choosing.

I counsel the students on what they can expect in the field and direct them to resources to make sure they have done adequate homework prior to enrolling.

My typical day begins with call backs to those interested in our programs and to set up interview appointments. I spend a great deal of time with each individual during their appointments to qualify them to move forward in the enrollment process. If an individual qualifies then I send an application to them and move them through the process connecting them with financial aid counselors and to academic counselors to get their funding in order and get them registered for classes.

There is typically no travel involved and most of my day is on the phone in front of a computer. I type many emails and provide lots of information about the school and its programs. There is a lot of training that is provided for those individuals who have had at least five years sales/customer service jobs or have a minimum of an Associates Degree and one year of experience. You must also have a basic knowledge of computers and know how to copy and paste, save documents, attach documents to emails, Use spell check, Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Word. Typing at least 40 words per minute will also be of help.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best parts of this job is the incredible feeling one gets from assisting another individual to fulfill their potential knowing that your do not have to "sell" an education as much as introducing them to the path they need to follow to go after their dreams. The integrity in this position is rewarding as one does not have to scam, lie, or manipulate to sell anything. I give the knowledge to the prospective student who then determines if this is the best place for them. I provide them with the benefits and differences between what we have to offer and let them decide if what we have fits their needs. Watching my students walk down the isle in cap and gown is reward for me as I know I had an integral part in assisting that student in their walk and changing their lives forever.

The worst part of the job is the long hours on the phone and the long hours sitting. In most colleges the area you are in is like a call center with hundreds of people in a large room broken in to smaller cubicles. Somehow, you must be able to close off everyone around you and go in to your own "bubble" with the person you are on the phone with.

Job Tips:
1. Remain true to who you are at all times. Stay honest even if the pressure is high to enroll students make sure those you recommend are likely to succeed.

2. Know that you will need experience in business retail sales and customer service so although you may have to take a low paying position you want to keep your sights high and spirits high knowing this experience will forge you a better path ahead. Stay level headed, take classes in college while building experience even if its only part time.

3. Enroll in an accredited college to get the experience of taking a class even if for some reason you cannot continue you will come away with some great knowledge and no one can take that away from you ever!

Additional Thoughts: This job as an Admission Advisor can be a great stepping stone to Academics, Financial Aid, Marketing and many other position high up in the company. Those who begin in Admissions have a better understanding of how educational facilities work from the ground up. Even those in Human Resources have started their careers in Admissions. Admissions is the window to a bigger world. Enjoy!

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