Traditionally, May 1 is “decision day,” the deadline for high school seniors to submit a deposit to hold their spot at a school for the following fall semester. In the wake of the covid-19 pandemic, that decision has been made much more difficult for students faced with choosing a college without the ability to visit campuses ahead of signing up to learn there.
Colleges across the nation are turning to 360-degree video and virtual tours to allow prospective students to explore the ground from thousands of miles away. Here on Long Island, St. Joseph’s College and Molloy College are among the higher education institutions tapping into digital resources to help students.
In person classes at St. Joseph’s College have been suspended since March 10, with nearly 4,400 students now using remote and virtual formats for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester. The school has also established an emergency fund for students experiencing hardship and is offering online counseling services. For new students, St. Joseph’s College has extended the deadline for accepting admission.
“We are being flexible with the deposit date and working with students who, due to financial challenges, may have trouble handling the deposit at this time,” Gigi Lamens, vice president for Enrollment Management at St. Joseph’s College, said. “Because of caps on certain programs, we will have to stop accepting deposits when the programs are at capacity.”
Virtual tours are also available that take students through the sprawling 32-acre, lakeside campus and its facilities. Students may participate in a virtual one-on-one meeting with admissions (undergraduate, graduate, online and adult professional studies) and financial aid counselors. Arranging a virtual meeting can be done by visiting sjcny.edu/visitsjcli.
“Our priority is serving both our continuing and incoming students, addressing any concerns they may have and facilitating their college plans,” Lamens said. “We are here to assist during this challenging and uncertain time, and we’re guided by our mission to serve our students and their families. As a small, local college, we are poised to provide a full college experience where students are our top priority.”
Students who need assistance or have questions should contact the Office of Admissions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Molloy College held a Virtual Accepted Students Day on Saturday, April 4. Using Zoom technology, a variety of college representatives from Student Affairs, Residence Life, Student Life, Athletics and Financial Aid presented to the accepted students and answered their questions. Molloy is also planning to hold a Virtual Open House in the near future and has moved its “decision day” for freshmen from May 1 to June 1. For additional information—including the opportunity to connect with a current Molloy student—prospective students can go to molloy.edu/admissions.