Interview with an Admissions Counselor
Anthony Fontana has been at CU Denver since October 2015 and works with a team of admissions counselors as an assistant director of transfer recruitment to provide the best possible bridge between prospective students and the university. You may have seen him presenting at your high school or college fair as well as right on campus where he works to connect prospective students with CU Denver resources, including undergraduates and alumni, to learn what the university has to offer for their specific goals.
In fact, CU Denver has a lot to offer. The top three reasons students choose CU Denver? “The campus’s location in the heart of downtown Denver, its commitment to learning with purpose along with hands on experience to complement in-class education, and its world class academic programs at a great value,” says Fontana.
With so many great characteristics, it’s no wonder that applying to CU Denver can feel like a nail-biting experience, but it doesn’t have to be! There are no such things as automatic admissions or denials – every student has something different to contribute to the community. Fontana suggests to “start thinking about the application process before you have to apply. Academics drive the application process and focusing on doing well in classes freshmen and sophomore year is what builds the foundation of a great application.”
Though CU Denver follows the Colorado Department of Higher Education’s Index Score system (the university’s minimum score is 93), Fontana stresses other aspects of an application. “Be sure to get involved in the community, as well. That looks different for every student. Some students are in clubs while others prefer sports or student government. Equally valuable is out-of-school involvement like volunteering or taking an active role in a religious organization.” He also recommends sending in a well written and revised personal statement with letters of recommendation, especially for applicants who are within a few points of the minimum index score.
Transfer students have much the same experience as freshmen applicants, but Fontana says that the most important factor for a transfer student is their GPA at the school they are transferring from and how many credit hours they’ve taken; the admissions committee rarely looks at ACT scores. Nontraditional students need not worry as “they typically slot into the appropriate group (freshman or transfer) depending on whether they have taken college coursework or not. Occasionally we get more experienced adults who did not take the ACT or SAT when they were in high school so we will evaluate their high school transcripts to make a decision.”
All in all, Fontana urges applications to remember, “We like admitting students! We, like many universities, prefer to admit students, not deny them. It’s a scary process but everything ends up okay in the end. Hearing ‘no’ can be hard, but if you don’t apply to your dream school because you’re worried about getting denied, you could be missing out on great opportunities.”
Want to learn more and find the university that best fits your personality and goals? Reach out to an admissions counselor. “For prospective students, admissions counselors should be your best friend. If you have a question, ask them. With many students looking at multiple universities, reach out to the counselors at all those schools and ask questions. Get as much information as possible to make your decision.”