By Melanie Perez
When prospective students visit FDU, they are greeted with smiling faces, special treatment and endless accommodations. These behaviors are understandable for open houses and mid- semester visits, since every college and university’s goal is to increase enrollment, but Admitted Students Day (ASD) at FDU should not follow those same tenets.
ASD is exclusively for students and their loved ones who have been accepted to FDU and are deciding whether or not to make FDU their home for the next four years. Instead of presenting in the best light, why aren’t we presenting FDU as it is on an average day?
Landscaping is refreshed, the SUB cafeteria set-up is different (i.e. prepared sandwich options, availability of dinner rolls, availability of disposable plates and bowls, existence of an interactive game and prizes, cool music, etc.), administrators are out and about, Public Safety doesn’t give parking tickets, Financial Aid and Enrollment Services personnel are more pleasant, there are more freebies and giveaways and everybody in general is in a good mood (or at least puts on a good face).
None of these things exist on a normal day at FDU.
The average student here has to deal with old mulch and choppy grass, not being able to take food out of the cafeteria, no dinner rolls and food that’s either too salty or too bland; only really seeing the deans around campus; getting tickets for parking anywhere other than behind the SUB or North Lot; rude people at Financial Aid and Enrollment Services; and students and faculty with attitudes and the occasional good mood.
The administration asks for student volunteers to help with giving directions, speaking about their majors and tabling for academic groups and student organizations on ASD. The students who volunteer are representative of the most kind-hearted and involved students on campus, but they’re really the minority. A vast majority of students are either too busy or simply don’t care.
So why is it that FDU’s “best of the best” is at the forefront of ASD, when all that’s doing is setting unrealistic expectations for incoming students?
They come here thinking that the food is good, faculty and sta are going to drop everything to help when there’s a problem or need, convenient parking is readily available and the campus is lively on the weekends.
“Student Ambassadors are told to pretend they know everybody, but really, they don’t know half of the
people they see,” a student worker, who wished to remain anonymous, said. “And they’re told what to say and not to say in order to show the school in the best light.”
It’s no surprise then that, according to the FDU 2016 fact sheet, a quarter of freshmen don’t return for their sophomore year. Part of it could be financials, but presumably they decided not to come back because FDU wasn’t what they expected. And for those who do stay, they still have gripes that the school didn’t meet the image portrayed at ASD.
“Some of it they did live up to, yes, but other things they did not,” the student worker said.