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Spring visitation prospects arrive

Observer Viewpoint | Thursday, March 31, 2005

The Office of Undergraduate Admissions would like to recognize and welcome the 154 prospective African American, Asian American, Latino and Native American students visiting campus to attend this year’s Spring Visitation Weekend. We have specifically designed the weekend to address the questions and concerns of prospective students from under-represented student populations. We hope that these talented young men and women will gain valuable insight into the several aspects of campus life through conversations and interaction with faculty, staff, alumni and current students, and that their decision to enroll at Notre Dame will be based upon positive personal experience.

We know that success requires commitment from all members of the Notre Dame community. With that in mind, we anticipate enrolling the most diverse and talented freshman class in our history.

Our Spring Visitation Weekend begins today and will extend through April 3. We clearly need everybody’s help in making this an encouraging event for these potential members of our student body. Gil Martinez, Assistant Director and Diversity Recruitment Coordinator, Son Nguyen, Counselor and Assistant Recruitment Coordinator, along with our student diversity coordinators Steven Arevalo, Covington Doan, Krystal Hardy and Lakota Mowrer, have been working diligently on the event.

I want to share with all the members of the Notre Dame community a letter that appeared in The Observer five years ago that I feel captures the essence of the program. It was written by Cindy Santana, one of our Assistant Directors of Admissions:

“The main purpose of Spring Visitation Weekend is to bring students here who may not be fortunate enough to visit the campus on their own as well as high talent diversity students that may not be considering Notre Dame as their first choice. This is an opportunity for students to decide, for themselves, whether or not Notre Dame is their match. In no way are we trying to sell Notre Dame. Spring Visitation is not a show. We hope that students leave Notre Dame knowing that we have answered all of their unanswered questions. We also hope to clarify all of the misconceptions of this place by exposing them to a taste of the different cultural events that take place throughout the year. The most important thing, though, that we be supported by the Notre Dame community, as an office that is here to help the University as a whole. There is so much effort that is put into this weekend, and we work extremely hard to improve it every year. The only way to increase diversity on this campus is to have as many people as possible involved in the recruitment process. It is important to know that without the support of the community, we are never going to improve the diversity of this campus.”

When Cindy wrote the above letter, our First Year class was 16 percent ethnic minority students. This past fall we enrolled 22 percent. Our Lady’s University has made a tremendous commitment to excellence in all that we do, including diversity. With everybody’s help we can make Notre Dame a better Notre Dame.

Daniel J. Saracino

Assistant Provost for Enrollment

March 28