The Schreyer Honors College is considering adding a half-hour interview component next year to the already competitive and intense application process.
“An interview can tell you more things about an applicant than just a flat application sheet of paper,” said Mitch Kirsch, an associate dean for student affairs, to Philly.com.
The program was tested as a pilot last year with trained alumni in Washington D.C. and Pittsburgh, who met with 197 applicants. New York and Philadelphia will be added to the pilot this year for an expected 500 additional applicants.
Pilot interviews did not impact the current applicants yet, but admissions believed it could have affected admissions for 26% of applicants — for better or for worse.
Schreyer’s external advisory board recommended adding an interview component in 2009, according to Philly.com. “Our mission is achieving academic excellence, building global perspective, and creating civic engagement,” said Anthony Shelton, a senior finance major who served on the committee. “With the interview process, we want to hear that the candidates are expressing some of these ideals.”
The interviews will be optional for students, although almost 50% of students who were given the option participated in the interview. Currently, the application process requires three essays, two recommendations from teachers, and a recommendation from a guidance counselor.