College Admissions 101: Interview with a Program Manager
We had the chance to interview Grant Tilus, a Senior Program Manager at Rasmussen College. In this interview, Grant shares important insight into the college admissions process including: what to look while researching colleges, common questions, college success strategies, and more.
1. What is your role at Rasmussen College?
I am a Senior Program Manager at Rasmussen College and have been in this role for just over a year and a half. As a program manager, my job is to connect with prospective students to answer any questions about going to college to discuss concerns, goals, and plans for obtaining their degree. Hopefully through our conversation I am able to show them how their dream of earning a degree can become a reality and how Rasmussen College can help.
2. What are common questions students have during the application and enrollment processes?
You may be surprised, but many students are just simply unfamiliar with the whole college admissions process, especially if they are planning on taking online courses. It’s something new to them, so I help to guide them through the process of applying, enrolling, and starting their classes.
Other common questions students have are regarding financial aid, online course set up, and even what kind of jobs students can obtain with a particular degree. Every student has different concerns, and the best thing is at Rasmussen College, your program manager walks you through the process from admission to starting your courses to make sure your transition into a college student goes smoothly.
3. What kinds of higher education questions should be asked by prospective college students?
Many students have somewhat of a good idea of what they want and where they want this degree to take them. So asking questions regarding the program specifics and what this can do for them is key. Asking about school accreditation is very important, not only for finding employment, but also for future educational opportunities.
Last, be sure to ask about student services. A few key services—like academic and technical support—will usually stand out to students; making sure the college of your choice offers them is important.
4. What are the college admissions requirements at Rasmussen College?
Rasmussen College requires our students to have earned a valid high school diploma or completed a GED. We are a qualified enrollment institution, so incoming students are also required to complete a basic assessment test to ensure that they are academically prepared to take classes at Rasmussen College. We use this test to ensure that they are prepared for the rigors of college level learning as well as for tracking our student’s academic growth.
It is also an admission requirement to have a student financial aid packaging completed before starting classes. This ensures that students are prepared and understand the investment and commitment they are making to the school and themselves as they begin the coursework working towards graduation.
Prior to beginning classes prospective students must also successfully complete a required College Experience Course. This one-week course teaches new students how to navigate the online classroom, and gain the knowledge and discipline necessary to understand the value of the investment in themselves to begin their college education. These admissions requirements help ensure that our students are well prepared to be successful throughout their time in school.
5. What types of degrees are available through Rasmussen College?
Rasmussen has a variety of career focused degree programs both at our on campuses and online. We offer in demand programs that offer strong employment opportunities for our graduates. Our degree programs range from the business, health sciences, nursing, justice studies, education, and technology fields. Our students are able to follow their degree paths by taking courses at a local campus, scheduling a mix of both local and online courses, or even earning their degree completely online.
6. What are the three top qualities you need as a student to succeed in your college courses?
The qualities that I look for in prospective students can vary since every individual has a unique situation. Three top qualities that I feel students need in order to succeed include motivation, determination, and vision. First, without motivation a student becomes disinterested or uninvolved which can lead to dropping out or poor grades which means being unprepared when working in your career field. Determination is important because going to college and completing your degree is a marathon race, not a sprint. It will take time, you will go through some trials and tribulations, but you need to believe that you can do it and remember why you are doing it; for a better life. Vision is important because it allows students to keep long-range goals in mind as you navigate through day-to-day life.
7. Any final remarks you can share with prospective students?
Of course, it’s our job as a college to help you learn and help prepare you for where you want to go in life. However, we can only do so much and the rest is up to you. Taking responsibility for yourself and putting in the hard work will pay off in the end. Remember that we can show you the path towards a college degree, but you must walk down that path yourself.