ALP: The Admissions Leadership Podcast

ALP: The Admissions Leadership Podcast

Ken Anselment hosts a series of one-on-one conversations with people who have been climbing the leadership mountain in the world of college admissions. Some are nearing the summit. Some are already there. But how did they get there? And what can other climbers learn from their mindsets, habits, and experiences? © Ken Anselment 2023

Episodes

April 19, 2024 54 mins

Nathan Ament and Teege Mettille are the creators and co-hosts of the hit podcast, The Admissions Directors Lunchcast. They share different versions of their podcast's origin while somehow enticing Ken to share how the ALP came to be. Also, there's a teaser hidden in the Rapid Descent that you might catch if you listen carefully.

Special shout-out to a slew of Nathan's and Teege's former Lawrence colleag...

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(No, the other one.)

What happens when two avowed GenXers record a podcast episode? From the host you get a bad reference to C+C Music Factory; from the guest you get helpful lessons on "how to vice president." Michael Keaton, VP for Enrollment Management at Ursinus College, sets the record straight on who was Michael Keaton first, how to leave things better than you found them, and why all colleges are not in th...

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April 5, 2024 51 mins

Carin Smith, domestic recruitment manager and Chicago regional representative for Beloit College (and a former member of Ken's team at Lawrence who helped him learn how to be an admissions director through a creative partnership she arranged), talks about how to lead without title, and the four reasons why this has been a deliberate choice she has made over her four decades in college admissions. She'll also share three e...

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March 22, 2024 49 mins

From the time he was a little boy, Jeff Blahnik always wanted to be "an attorney," but a moment of crisis halfway through law school changed his path. He's now the Vice President of Enrollment Management at the University of Oklahoma, and shares the secret of winning the job interview at OU, how "inspired hospitality" makes a flagship feel intimate, and how to establish yourself as a new leader at a new ins...

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March 15, 2024 55 mins

Angela Frazier, Vice President of Student Services at Waukesha County Technical College (the ALP's first guest two-year college enrollment leader and the first African-American leader in WCTC's 100-year history) shines a light on what people get wrong about two-year colleges; how WCTC has punched above its weight with recruitment and retention; and why she needs help with a walkout song.

Special shout-out to Ange...

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March 8, 2024 46 mins

Justin Draeger, President and CEO of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, joins the ALP to share what colleagues in admissions, enrollment, student success, presidents' offices, etc. can do to support their financial aid colleagues, who are about to do 6 to 9 months of work in about 4 to 6 weeks. A deep thinker, reader, writer and speaker, Justin also shares a bunch of excellent leadership lessons,...

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Richard Harrison Bailey—the RHB behind RHB—joins the ALP to discuss the principle of Coherence; the virtuous cycle of relevance, relationships and revenue for colleges; the difference between market position and brand; and how the values of truth, beauty, love and justice animate the core values and, to this day, guide the work of the firm he and his business partner (and spouse), Tammy Bailey, formed in 1991. 

Rapid Descent

  1. Walk...
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Laura Kaub, director of the Duolingo partnership with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees program, talks about keeping refugees and African students out of the "hole" in holistic admission so they can get into the economic, educational and political systems that can bring about change. She provides examples of U.S colleges that "get it right," including Macalester and Northwestern, as well as model...

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How does someone go from being a lawyer and a photographer to found and lead the company that has reshaped the college fair experience for millions of students and more than 15,000 admission professionals representing more than 2500 institutions around the world?  Dan Saavedra, founder and president of StriveScan, tells us how he built StriveScan (spoiler, with trust and the friendliest client contract ... ever).  Live through what...

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What is it like to leave the familiarity of higher ed to join a tech company with a vision to change how the world thinks about language testing? Jen Dewar, Senior Director of Strategic Engagement for the Duolingo English Test, shares how to break through, climb steep learning curves, learn from setbacks ... and why you don't win or lose—you only win or learn.

References

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Get ready for an episode rife with random references when David Burge, VP for Enrollment Management at George Mason University and winner of the Margaret E. Addis Service to NACAC Award, joins the ALP to discuss ADVANCE, a model transfer partnership between GMU and Northern Virginia Community College. Warning: this episode contains eye-rolling dad jokes. Listener discretion is advised.

Rapid Descent

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We have featured a bunch of folks who have gone from inside to "alongside" higher ed (including your host). Carolyn Noll Sorg, VP for Enrollment at John Carroll University has chosen to go in the other direction, and reminds us of the things that call us into this work.

Bonus: Carolyn shares wonderful insights into how to think about creating memorable experiences for your students—including how to wrap it into ...

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Season Premiere: Ethan Sawyer, founder of College Essay Guy, kicks off Season 8 of the ALP and we quickly learn it's not about the essay ... it's about figuring out who you are and what you care about. We talk about the applicability of Ethan's discovery exercises to everybody (not just college applicants), why Ethan might be the perfect candidate to interview Ken someday, and what roles Jesus and diapers play in the...

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In this special edition, Art Coleman (@ArtColemanDC), managing partner and co-founder of EducationCounsel (and a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights), shares the initial chapters of a playbook admissions officers can follow to move forward with confidence (and care) in the wake of the Supreme Court's decision in SFFA v. Harvard and SFFA v. UNC.

We disc...

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June 19, 2023 48 mins

Season Finale: Dr. Joffery Gaymon,  Vice President for Enrollment at Auburn University, shares what it's like (and what it takes) to make the jump to one of the biggest roles at one of the most recognizable institutions in the U.S. She shares the essential and timeless tools to keep in your toolbox, whatever your ambitions may be, as well as how to keep yourself focused and grounded as the work gets tougher. (And there may be ...

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June 12, 2023 49 mins

Kent Barnds,  Executive Vice President of ExternalRelations: Advancement | Communication | Enrollment | Planning for Augustana College (Rock Island, Ill.), shares how he started as "an accidental admissions person" and become the person with the longest title in the history of the ALP, and what he has learned along the way by becoming a college parent. Great mysteries will be revealed in this episode, including the origin...

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Robert Gould, Vice President for Strategic Enrollment Management at Augsburg University (Minneapolis), offers a deep dive into an approach to college admission that is turning the process on its head and—in the process—not only fostering a greater sense of belonging for students, but for the admission professionals who work with them.

Could it be an antidote to the Great Resignation?

Notes

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May 22, 2023 44 mins

Allan Mathew, Director of Graduate Admissions at Tufts University, discusses the similarities and differences of graduate and undergrad admissions and what he's learned working at three institutions in very different market positions. He also offers compelling insights into the four themes of his doctoral dissertation, which focused on the experiences of chief enrollment officers of color.

Rapid Descent

  • Walkout son...
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May 15, 2023 48 mins

Heather Daniels, Director of Admissions at Colorado State University, discusses how she's managed to "come home" to every college she has ever worked for ... and discovers that she and Ken have a surprising braided history.

Rapid Descent

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May 8, 2023 42 mins

Boyd Bradshaw, the inaugural Vice President for Enrollment Management at Towson University (MD), discusses Towson's new comprehensive and integrated approach to enrollment—from recruitment to graduation—and what it has been like organizing the institution  around that work. We also learn Boyd's secret and surprising skill that he carries with him to this day.

Rapid Descent

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