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In admissions and recruitment, we get what we deserve…

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Today I had a colleague, who works directly with early inquiries (freshmen and sophomores), forward the following e-mail message from a prospective student:

“Hello,

Thank you for your interest in my education.  At this point in time, narrowing down my choices has grown to be incredibly difficult.  One aspect about me is that I love free gifts.  Free clothes are of course my favorite gifts!  I always wear adult small sizes, whether it is t-shirts, hoodies, or even sweatpants.  Fortunately, free t-shirts benefit everyone!  While i receive a gift I love, you would be blessed with free advertisement and grow exceedingly closer to my top pick of education.  I look forward to learning more about your fine facility, while advertising it.”

Now, while could one become indignant about this note, why?

I find myself quite amused by this note. Isn’t this a great example of a student turning the tables on us?

Seriously, I want to offer this kid admission (first) and a scholarship (afterward) for creativity!

I think this is a perfect illustration of the ongoing commercialization of higher ed.

For those who read this, answer these questions for me:

Do you think this is just a punk ploy to get some gear?

Do you think I should respond to the student and send the student a hoody?

Do you think it I should negotiate with the student? For example, create some ground rules for wearing the apparel?

Should I use this a case study?

Is this request any different from all of the requests the office receives from every high school and after prom program?

I really feel like this student is giving me a taste of my own medicine.

Thoughts?

Kent Barnds

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