Tag Archives: students

New Student Registration, why should you go?

27 Jun

New Student RegistrationToday 42 new Lincoln Memorial University students visited campus for New Student Registration (NSR). They came with parents and family for the next step in their journey to college. The LMU Admissions team hosts several of these events throughout the summer to prepare for the start of the fall semester and the influx of roughly 600 new students.

What exactly happens at New Student Registration, and why is it important for you to attend if you are new student? Quite simply, NSR is when the groundwork of your first year of college, and possibly all four years, will be laid. During this day-long event you’ll hear multiple presentations about student activities, residence life and student success. But make no mistake; the most important thing that will happen at NSR will be your advising and registration session.

 

Faculty advisor

Dr. Tim Williams, a Vet Tech professor, advises an incoming LMU student during NSR.

During this time you will meet with a faculty advisor within your major. They will ask you several questions about your career and educational goals and help draw you a road map to meet them. You’ll have a list of required courses and electives that will make up your degree. The next step is to put together the puzzle of how to balance your course load on your way to your degree program. It is not as simple as high school may have been, when your guidance counselor scheduled your classes and then checked and double checked to make sure you had all the requirements for graduation. The classes you took in high school were available on a regular schedule, so if you missed chemistry as a junior you could still pick it up as a senior. In college there are a lot more options and a lot more forces influencing the availability of a course.

 

Text book

I was expecting to purchase a book like this one.

Let me share a personal anecdote on the topic of course selection and scheduling. I went to a private Catholic liberal arts college and one of the core/general education requirements was a three-class/9 credit hour cluster of sociology or psychology courses. I had no problem scheduling the first two classes in the cluster but put off the third until the first semester of my senior year because that was when they were offering a sports psychology class as an elective. I was excited about the class when I registered on my way out of town the last semester of my junior year. So you can imagine my surprise when I went to buy my books when I got back to campus that fall and instead of Psychology of Sports the title on my schedule appeared as the Psychology of Human Sex. While I was working my summer away, the faculty of the psychology department changed and the professor who was teaching the sports course left. The new faculty member got to pick her elective based on her area of research. And because I was a senior I couldn’t opt out of the course without delaying my graduation.

Surprise! My sports psychology course changed over the summer to the psychology of human sexuality.

Surprise! My sports psychology course changed over the summer to the psychology of human sexuality.

Now, it was a fascinating course and I fulfilled that requirement and graduated on time, but I never would have picked that course title out on my own. So keep an open mind and be flexible, but also it is important to not procrastinate with the requirements that are outside your major.

Another thing to keep in mind while attending your NSR is the schedule you set in your first semester will color your first experiences at LMU and shape your overall college experience. If you overload yourself with tough classes, you may struggle and wonder if college was the right path for you. Conversely, if you take a lot of less challenging classes you may find yourself lulled into a false sense of brain drain. Like most things in life, the key is balance. Listen to your advisor but don’t be afraid to ask questions if there is something that you are not sure about.

If you are a newly minted high school graduate maybe you are looking forward to one more summer of fun before packing up and heading off to college, or maybe you are working hard to save the money that will fund your higher education. Either way it would be easy to say ‘I don’t need to attend NSR until the semester is closer,’ or ‘I’ll just go to the next one.’ Classes fill up quickly, especially the ones not scheduled at 8 a.m. If you truly want to control your own destiny in terms of class schedule, the earlier you register the better. Nobody wants the 8 a.m. Monday, Wednesday class when there is a 10 a.m. option; so the early bird will get the worm, or in this case the later class.

If you haven’t attended a NSR, there are still three more opportunities. There will be two in July, on the 11th and 25th and the final one will take place on Friday, August 15, 2014, just before the start of the semester on August 18. You can register to attend by visiting www.LMUnet.edu/admissions and selecting the events calendar.

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The Student Series

7 Aug

Summer on the campus of Lincoln Memorial University is coming to a close. In the last three weeks we have welcomed new students in the LMU-DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine, LMU-Duncan School of Law and Caylor School of Nursing. Next week brings Faculty/Staff Conference Week which culminates with New Student Survival Week.

It’s hard to believe that it has been three months since the Class of 2012 crossed the stage at Tex Turner Arena, but alas, time flies. It was roughly same time as graduation when I was invited to join a group that was working on recruiting more students for fall. You see, though our retention efforts were on pace to make up any shortfall, our new student projections for this fall were lacking. After nearly 10 years of record breaking enrollments, LMU had reached a plateau.

You can point the finger in many directions as to why our new student numbers were down. There is the economy, the intimidating notion of college or simply the fear of not fitting in. Another factor in LMU’s new student short fall was the strides the University was taking to increase admissions standards and enhance its academic rigor.

So roughly three months ago, I was invited to join that committee to brainstorm on what things we could do to finish the recruitment cycle strong and bring more new students to LMU. The group included a trustee, the Dean of Enrollment Management, the Director of Admissions, the Dean of Community College relations and the Dean of Administration plus a University employee that specializes in promotions.

The group immediately went to where everyone goes for a quick fix, marketing efforts. They inquired if we had done enough marketing, if we had ran enough ads, if there was something that we could do to get more people to apply? What were we doing right now? I always feel uncomfortable when those questions start to fly. Not because they aren’t valid questions, but because I always feel like no matter what I’m going to say it’s going to sound defensive.  The cold hard facts for this group at that moment were that it was May and the advertising budget had been planned and spent months ago. So there would be no quick fixes.

Looking for plan b, we discussed the current applicant pool and discovered that there was a fairly large group of applicants who had already applied and been accepted to LMU, but had not registered to join the Class of 2017. To me, it was the golden ticket. Here was a group that we already knew were interested enough to apply to LMU. The admissions folks told us that they had been communicating with this group for months and that they were just taking extra time making decisions. “They haven’t told us they aren’t coming to LMU or that they were going anywhere else. Our counselors have called them and they keep saying they are still making their decision,” Admissions Director Sherry McCreary reported to the group.

If they were still in the market to come to LMU, I assumed that repeated calls from our admissions counselors would only do so much. We needed to find a different way to reach them. The group discussed the University’s greatest selling points including the picturesque campus and engaging student body. “A lot of times all it takes is for prospective students to tour the campus and they are sold,” the admissions folks reported. This led to a discussion of adding another recruitment event like our Railsplitter for a Day or Preview Day events, but with several new student orientations already scheduled throughout the summer there was no time to add something else. Which brought us to the conclusion that if we couldn’t get prospective to students to Harrogate, maybe there was a way to bring Harrogate to our prospective students.

The result was a communication plan that included video embedded emails addressed to those accepted, but not registered students and the student series was born.

The series of videos features a host of current LMU students telling about why they chose LMU and sharing what their lives at LMU are like.

I would like to tell you that the student series was a massive success and we were able to convert 150 of the 300 people in that pool of accepted applicants into registered students. However, I not sure that is the truth and we won’t have final figures until classes start. Whether we still come up short or not, the student videos have been a big hit and something our admissions staff has already said we need to continue to utilize.

Giving Thanks

23 Nov

As I log on to Facebook every day, I can’t help but notice my “friends” who have taken the challenge of posting a thankful thought every day in the month of November. Though I didn’t join the fun, there is plenty to be thankful for at LMU.

From the exponential growth over the past decade to the physical plant improvements at LMU, you don’t have to look far to see our blessings. And they are not limited to the main campus in Harrogate, Tenn., expanding staff and resources abound system-wide.

However on the eve of Thanksgiving, I think the University’s greatest blessings continue to be its students. Our students are outstanding. They come from all walks of life and follow in the footsteps of our dedicated alumni who have never forgotten their alma mater.

Many undergrads come here as first generation college students, full of promise, expectation and apprehension. They are brave souls, breaking barriers for their families in search of opportunity to grow their minds and enhance earning potential. For them LMU is THANKFUL.

And we have our legacies as well, children who have followed parents who have followed their parents. The blood in those families really does run blue and grey. For them LMU is THANKFUL.

Not too long ago, the Educational Specialists Degree was the highest degree our students could achieve at LMU. In May we celebrated our inaugural class of Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine. In our system today, we have students pursuing doctoral level degrees in three disciplines – osteopathic medicine, law and education. These students have taken our level of scholarly activity to a new level. They have expanded our world. For them LMU is THANKFUL.

So in a month where we are challenged to come up with 30 thankful thoughts, LMU has 4,550 – OUR STUDENTS.

What’s Happening: DSOL Orientation

6 Aug

Student laptops ready to be deployed.

The LMU-Duncan School of Law welcomed incoming first year law students for orientation today. Two groups of students, part-time and full-time, gathered in the Courtroom for presentations by the Dean, faculty and administration. The groups also received their laptop computers and training on the technology used in the curriculum. Additionally, the students received parking passes, student IDs and heard presentations on financial aid, student services and more. The approximately 60 students will now go through the Bridge Week program as they prepare for their first class which will start on August 15.