Admissions and enrollment management leads from two American Talent Initiative member institutions, the University of Michigan and University of Richmond, co-authored an op-ed in the 74 that elevates community-based organizations as critical partners for colleges seeking to effectively engage students from hard-to-reach and underserved communities across America.
At this time of year, college admissions offices are typically gearing up for a flurry of high school visits, college fairs and on-campus events across the country to identify and recruit the next class of talented students.
As with much else, though, the pandemic has upended this practice, prompting institutions of higher education to repurpose tours for virtual platforms, retrofit admissions events for Zoom and connect with students by text, phone and video.
But as colleges reimagine admissions for a largely virtual context, they must not leave behind students who lack access to high-quality broadband. One in five young people in America today faces this challenge, a disproportionate number of whom are from lower-income backgrounds and communities of color. These are the students most likely to lack the information and resources needed to navigate the complex application process, potentially fueling even wider gaps in postsecondary access.