Prospective students get small taste of Whitman

by Caitlin Tortorici

Another successful Visitors’ Day came and went on Friday, Oct. 13. As early as 7:45 a.m., parents and prospective students arrived at Whitman prepared to seize the action-packed day organized by the Office of Admissions.

Visitors enjoyed a complimentary continental breakfast at Reid before moving next door to the Young Ballroom to hear about the “Whitman Experience” from the pros: President George Bridges and Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid J. Antonio Cabasco.

From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., prospective students had the opportunity to attend classes listed in their registration packets.

But that was only one glimpse into the Whitman world. The day’s intricate schedule provided students and parents with a great number of opportunities to learn about the Whitman Experience, in and out of the classroom.

Beginning at 9 a.m., Associate Professor of Chemistry Frank Dunnivant provided an overview of the Whitman curriculum and the General Studies program.

Afterwards, Assistant Director of Financial Aid Services Marilyn Ponti discussed the financial aid application and awarding process at Whitman in Kimball Theatre.

At 11 a.m., those curious about the brains behind Whitman’s Admissions decisions attended “Meet The Dean,” hosted by Cabasco to discuss the application and administration process. Those more curious about dorm life assembled in the Jewett main lounge for a taste of residence hall experience.

Come lunchtime, prospective students and parents ate for free at any one of the dining halls, getting an apt taste of Bon Appetit as well as dining hall schedules.

At 1 p.m., visitors had the option of attending a student panel or a discussion on Whitman Athletics at Sherwood.

An hour later, visitors interested in pre-professional programs, cooperatives and combined majors attended discussions in Olin and the Hall of Science. There, faculty members and current students discussed Whitman’s special programs in Asian studies, computer science, dentistry, education, engineering, environmental studies, law, medicine and veterinary medicine.

At this time, visitors also had the option of discussing Whitman’s international off-campus study programs with Director of International Programs Susan Holme-Brick or taking a tour of Whitman’s 11 interest houses by the RAs of the interest house community.

At 3 p.m, visitors could choose to attend an Outdoor Program slide show or take a tour of the Harper Joy Theatre with HJT director and Chair of the Theatre Department Thomas Hines.

Of course, it’s never over until the fat lady sings—or in this case, Whitman’s three a capella groups: the Sirens of Swank, Schwa, and the Testostertones. Visitors got a taste of the Whitman music scene as well as complimentary refreshments.

The visitors seemed to enjoy themselves. Seattle natives Chris Hansman and mother Lori commended the Whitman Administration on a pleasant and highly informative day.

“This visitors’ day is way better than the other schools I visited, because you actually get to go to classes,” said Hansman. The high school senior visited Pomona, Claremont McKenna, Occidental and Vassar earlier this year.

His mother was equally impressed. “It’s so great that you get to attend all these small discussions,” she said. “The professors all seem very charismatic.”

Issaquah native Matthew Jacquette enjoyed the closing activity most. “I liked listening to the Sirens of Swank, the Testostertones and Schwa,” said Jaquette, Testostertones CD in hand. Jaquette plans on majoring in music.

Prospective student Evan Steiner of Tigard, Oregon seemed most impressed with Whitman’s green and sunny environment. “The weather is great. The campus is really beautiful,” said Steiner.

Los Angeles native and senior at Crossroads School Jersey Kauffman thoroughly enjoyed his Whitman experience. “I can’t believe people in Los Angeles don’t know about this place. It’s such an amazing school.” Kauffman plans on educating the masses when he returns home.

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