By Alicia Baudais
Prospective students and their families will see the results of an extreme makeover to an event designed to showcase University of Calgary programs, services and facilities. Open House 07 boasts a new format, location and time—changes to better meet the needs of students and parents who are shopping for a post-secondary education.
“An environmental scan of our competitors showed that we had room to grow this event,” says Kim Gordey, director of enrolment strategy, media and communications in Enrolment Services. “This year, we focused on three priorities: the first is to provide an “experience” of what the programs are like; the second is to showcase the amazing work of our professors and students; and the third is to create a convenient time to visit campus.”
Faculties have been encouraged to create interactive exhibits where potential students can experience what they may do in a particular program if they attend U of C.
“They are incorporating multi-media, demonstrations, prototypes, student research projects—anything that can tell the U of C story as an experience,” says Kathleen Massey, assistant vice-president, enrolment and registrar.
Visitors are also invited to attend sessions that feature innovative research stories or student projects that have taken place in the last year, such as Piers Steele’s research on why we procrastinate or Rob Longair’s biology class trip to Ghana this summer.
“We want to tell prospective students about the exciting work that they can be a part of,” says Jody Crowe, manager, events and conversion activities.
Another innovation that is proving popular is a partnership with the U of C alumni office, whereby a U of C alum invites a prospective student to attend a special breakfast and then access the open house a half an hour earlier than the general public. Half of the available 200 registrations are already filled.
The event was moved from a Monday night to a Saturday, so that busy Calgary and out-of-town students and their families can more easily schedule a trip to campus. The exhibit area has moved to the MacEwan Student Centre, a space that better lends itself to an exhibition and is easily found at the heart of campus.
The 10th annual University of Calgary Open House will be held on Saturday, Nov. 3, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with special alumni access at 9:30 a.m. Visit www.ucalgary.ca/futurestudent/openhouse for more details.