The SUNY New Paltz Fall Open House took place on Oct. 22 and Oct. 29 for interested students and their families.
Open house, a regular event used to attract prospective students, is a day where students and their families visit and tour the SUNY New Paltz campus. It also provides information about academic programs and student services such as financial aid and Residence Life programs.
“It’s really just to give prospective students the opportunity to see what we have to offer,” said Dana Rinschler, the co-coordinator of Open House and the director of off-campus recruiting. “Getting students to campus is really the most important thing so they can actually put themselves here and see themselves here.”
Student service organizations such as financial aid and health centers are available on Open House weekends. Rinschler thinks it’s a good way for students to get expert information about the majors they’re interested in and student services on campus.
Nearly 2,600 people registered for the first Fall Open House Weekend and 2,427 registered for the second Open House Weekend, said Rinschler. It’s possible that fewer than 2,300 students attended the Open House event on Oct. 29 due to the winter weather.
According to Shana Circe, the co-coordinator of Open House and the director of the Welcome Center, the event is “so large it would be impossible to move it to another day.”
Their target goal for each year is 2,500.
“The planning process begins a full year out from the event,” said Circe. “The bulk of the detailed planning takes place 4 months out from the event and accelerates as we get closer to the event.”
Circe said the Open House program is funded by the budget allocated by the Office of Undergraduate admissions.
Other ways Circe and Rincschler promote SUNY New Paltz to potential students is by having representatives attend regional and national college fairs and by recruiting students from Long Island, New York City and Dutchess County.
Some of the things Rincschler said sets New Paltz apart from other colleges is location.
“It kind of puts us in a great spot,” said Rinchsler. “We have a lot of internship opportunities because of where we’re located.”
She also says that the amount diversity in terms of student body, academic programs offered and student clubs and organizations is another attribute of New Paltz that set it apart from other colleges.
“Students really can find their niche [here], ” she said.