Today’s guest, Margaret Lysy, is the Associate Director of Admissions at one of America’s best colleges, Georgetown University. Margaret came to share her personal story from growing up in Rhode Island to her current work in the Admissions department at Georgetown and encourage the Life Skills class, some of Hope High’s best and brightest juniors, to consider Georgetown. Georgetown, as the Life Skills class knows, is the alma mater of a Hope Life Skills alum, Marta Aparicio (Hope High 2010).
Margaret acknowledged each student may look for unique qualities in a college. That unique quality may be a specific course of study like graphic design or accounting. It might be a school’s study abroad program or it could be a school’s extra curricular programs like theatre or basketball. Some students may like a large college like Penn State University with 45,000 students or a small school like New England College with just 2,000 students. Some students may prefer a college located in a city; others may prefer a school in a rural area. There may be some students who want to stay in Rhode Island while others look out of state. All Mr Cronin’s children went to colleges in North Carolina and each one loved their college experience at East Carolina University and High Point University.
Margaret advised the Life Skills students to “make sure you do your research about the school. Speak to people who attended the school you’re thinking about and find out about their experience at the school.
Visit the school you’re considering and, when you’re there, speak to students on campus
about their experience and the extracurricular activity you’re considering. If possible, meet some professors in the major area of study you’re thinking about. Ask – is the campus safe? Find out how diverse the student body is and what support services and activities they have for students of different ethnicities. Prepare lots of questions and then make sure you get them answered.“
Margaret said, whatever qualities you look for in a school, make sure the school helps you develop your potential. You want a school that will help you uncover your talents and develop them. This will build confidence in your abilities as well as you, the person. Success comes faster with confidence and humility.
“You always want to feel good about yourself and humble at the same time.“
Margaret then spoke about Georgetown. She shared Georgetown’s amazingly high percentage (33%) of ethnic, racial and international diversity in the student body and the extensive support services for each student. “Georgetown works hard to help their students become successful. As long as the student is working hard, the Georgetown community will be there. I encourage you to ask Marta (Marta Aparicio – Hope High 2010 and Georgetown 2014.) about Georgetown support.“
Margaret also mentioned the college essay and interview.
“The college essay and interview are extremely important in the selection process at Georgetown.
We do place in inordinate amount of focus on SAT scores. We look at high school grades and did the student show continuous improvement from their sophomore year to their senior year. We also look at extracurricular activities from sports and arts to part time jobs. And, does the student have a special skill or experience that could enrich the Georgetown student body? I can’t encourage the Life Skills students enough to take the time to prepare their essay and for their interview to tell the story of their brand.“
The class ended with the regular network sessions for exchanging business cards and adding Margaret to the Life Skills network.