SMC hires new admissions director
Kelly Konya | Friday, August 22, 2014
Sarah Gallagher Dvorak, a 1999 alumna of Saint Mary’s College and previous director of undergraduate admissions at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., has been named Saint Mary’s new director of admissions, the College announced in a June 18 press release.
According to the press release, Gallagher Dvorak received a bachelor’s degree in communication studies from Saint Mary’s and a master’s degree in mass communication from California State University-Northridge.
“We couldn’t be happier with our choice of a new director,” vice president for enrollment management Mona Bowe said in a press release. “We were blessed with a very well-qualified candidate pool, yet we only had to look in our virtual backyard to find the strongest one.”
In addition to her position at George Mason, Gallagher Dvorak’s career has also included work at Edelman Worldwide Public Relations in Chicago as an assistant account executive; WSBT-TV in South Bend as a news producer; Marymount High School in Los Angeles as communications coordinator; Lock Haven University in Pennsylvania as assistant director of admissions; and Indiana University Bloomington as associate director of recruitment outreach and senior associate director of marketing and communications, as stated in a press release.
Gallagher Dvorak said her various roles have provided her with a wide breadth of experience and knowledge about higher education and college admission. As director of admissions at Saint Mary’s, Gallagher Dvorak will direct all efforts related to the recruitment and admission of undergraduates at Saint Mary’s.
“This involves a number of areas, including, but not limited to, international and national travel and outreach to prospective students and families, managing the visit experience and events both on and off campus, coordinating our alumnae recruitment program, managing the application decision process and marketing and communication efforts,” she said. “I also supervise and manage a team of 17 staff members. I’m really excited to build upon the great work my team has accomplished and take the SMC Office of Admission to the next level; to think outside the box about how we can reach prospective students and spread the message about the quality of both a Saint Mary’s education and an all-women’s education.”
Bowe said Gallagher Dvorak is well-versed on the challenges of recruiting undergraduate students, and she has a proven record of attracting great students.
“I believe that what makes her unique for this position is that she is one of our own Belles,” she said. “She values the education she received at Saint Mary’s and can speak first hand to the strength of the liberal arts, writing program and other unique aspects of a Saint Mary’s education. She is a great leader, and like many of our Belles, a great role model for our young staff.”
Gallagher Dvorak said she has taken on this role at the perfect time, as everyone from the Vice President to the President of the Board of Trustees is supportive of the admissions team’s efforts.
“Recruiting for a small, private, all-women’s college can be challenging, but I have complete confidence that our team will succeed,” Gallagher Dvorak said. “I was also lucky enough to hire a number of new counselors this summer, and I look forward to bringing our team together throughout the year in an effort to get to know one another better and to work as cohesively as possible toward our goals.”
After spending the last 15 years in a variety of cities around the country, Gallagher Dvorak said she is thrilled to return home to Saint Mary’s.
“Doing what I love at a place I love is a dream come true. Saint Mary’s molded me into the capable woman I am today, and I strive to use the knowledge I have gained throughout my career to spread the mission of Saint Mary’s both nationally and internationally,” she said. “I believe I have two significant responsibilities: to lead a team that empowers young women to seek out a college that will help them grow in mind, body and spirit; and to help these women find the place at which they can explore, discover and ultimately become their best selves.”