College looks beyond state lines for recruits

Students from Maryland, Connecticut, Massachusetts and as far as California are part of a group of 83 freshmen comprising the largest number of out-of-state students the College has admitted since it began tracking the statistic in the fall of 2000. Earlier in the summer, as many as 93 out-of-state students had sent acceptance letters to the College, but that figure decreased as students withdrew those letters.

As usual, the great majority of out-of-state students are from neighboring New York and Pennsylvania. Most students at the College are still residents of New Jersey.

Matthew Middleton, assistant director of Admissions, says the College?s goal in pursuing out-ofstate students is to increase geographic diversity on campus and to increase the College?s visibility to the entire east coast, beyond New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. Middleton oversees all out-of-state recruitment.

“I think to be considered a truly elite institution it helps to have students coming from places all over the country,” he said.

As part of its out-of-state recruitment efforts, the of?ce of Admissions has two counselors, one for recruitment in New York and one for recruitment in Pennsylvania. In addition, the College sends representatives to Delaware and Maryland.

“Our goal is to actually make physical recruitment trips to Connecticut and Virginia in the next couple of years,” Middleton said.

The main method of the of?ce of Admissions is simply to put prospective out-of-state students in communication with current out-of-state students through mail, e-mail or instant messaging.

Last year, Middleton tasked four out-of-state students, one from each class, with writing a letter to high school seniors who had been accepted to the College.

Each student wrote about an aspect of their experience at the College. For example, Allison DeMarco, now a senior health and exercise science and biology major, related her experience studying abroad, while Jansen Weaver, sophomore biology major, wrote about Welcome Week.

This is all part of an effort to make potential out-of-state students feel that they will not be the only students who do not hail from New Jersey, explained Middleton.

“The number one thing that out-of-state students say about why they choose not to come here is it feels to them that everybody?s from New Jersey,” he said.

Jack Casey, an incoming freshman business major from Pennsylvania, admitted he was intimidated at ?rst about the overwhelming majority New Jersey residents have.

“If you see the raw numbers of how many kids are from out of state, it?s understandable why they might get a little nervous,” Middleton added.

Out-of-state students make up only about 5 percent of the undergraduate population, approximately 311 students, according to the Princeton Review.

Many students living in far-off places like California and Colorado are former residents of New Jersey seeking to return to the state where they grew up, said Middleton.

He also cited the College?s appearances in publications such as Peterson?s Competitive Colleges,

U.S. News and World Report and Barron?s Pro?les of American Colleges, in which the College was ranked among the nation?s most competitive schools.

Casey, the freshman from Pennsylvania, found out about the College from the Princeton Review.

“The more I read about it, the more I liked it,” he said.

The College also offers programs that are dif?cult to ?nd elsewhere, such as the 7-year medical program and the deaf education program, though the most popular majors for out-of-state students are similar to those for in-state students. For example, biology is among the most popular majors for out-of-state students, just as it is for in-state students.

Aside from a dearth of other out-of-state students and tuition, which is approximately $7,000 higher for out-of-state students, other disincentives for out-of-state students to atend the College include the lack of name recognition outside New Jersey.

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Myles Ma