College admissions evolve as the pandemic continues

College admissions evolve as the pandemic continues
Mary Baldwin University is offering private, single-family tours, as well as virtual tours online. (Source: WHSV)

STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) — As students are preparing to make some really important decisions, guidance counselors are doing what they can to ensure students have the best shot at going to college.

“Let’s focus on your community service. Let’s focus on the challenges you’ve faced this year and how you’ve overcome that in your essays to colleges and talk about what’s been hard with COVID and how are you impacted and what are you learning with COVID,” said Amanda Francis, director of school counseling at Staunton High School.

On Tuesday, College Board announced that they would no longer offer SAT subject tests or the SAT with essays.

“As students and colleges adapt to new realities and changes to the college admissions process, College Board is making sure our programs adapt with them. We’re making some changes to reduce demands on students,” College Board stated on their blog.

“That [standardized testing] doesn’t measure anything. It takes a snapshot of you in that moment and you have anxieties and all sorts of things that play a role,” Francis said.

Like many universities across the country, Mary Baldwin University said that their admission process has continued to evolve over the course of the pandemic. MBU officials said they made the decision to remove SAT scores from their requirements and focus on other ways to get to know the student.

“The first and foremost thing that we look at is the student’s high school transcript you know how well they have done in courses which courses the student has taken. That is really the best indicator for success at Mary Baldwin,” said Matt Munsey, VP of Enrollment at MBU.

Munsey said the university has changed its enrollment process drastically.

“We have really realized we have to meet the students where they are in the process. On a given year previously we would personally individually visit about 300 different high schools throughout Virginia to talk to guidance counselors, talk to the students at the high school and now we have to do a lot of that virtually,” Munsey explained.

To find more information on admissions at MBU, click here.

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