By Carly Thompson / Staff writer
Ambassadors are often unsung heroes for recruiting prospective students to colleges. What goes unnoticed by many is their dedication to their jobs.
To begin the process of becoming a student ambassador at Hutchinson Community College, students must fill out an application. After the applications are reviewed, the selected applicants are interviewed. Each year, the school looks for 20 to 24 staff members with an equal balance of Reno County graduates and out-of-county graduates.
Lynnette Hilty is the Assistant Director of Admissions at HutchCC and looks for students with friendly personalities.
“We just want students who can be welcoming, be excited about sharing their experiences as a Blue Dragon, and hopefully, allow that visitor to see how they could fit in here as a student,” Hilty said. “Someone who hopes to get more out of the experience than they may have put into doing the job. We want them to be their genuine self.”
Because ambassadors may be the first person prospective students meet on campus, it is important that they get a great first impression.
Ambassadors have set shifts during the week in the admissions office where they could be giving tours or helping with other office duties. Ambassadors are also required to attend bi-monthly meetings, followed by call nights. Call nights are dedicated to reaching out to potential students and informing them of upcoming events or simply thanking them for speaking with one of the admissions representatives.
Mason Weathers, a Hutchinson sophomore, spends anywhere from two to six hours a week on his ambassadorship. He said that he enjoys meeting prospective students and helping them get to know HutchCC.
Weathers answers a variety of questions such as what the dorms are like, the food in the cafeteria, and types of activities on campus.
“I feel that ambassadors are the face of the college and having the program really helps ‘sell’ the college,” Weathers said
The ambassador staff also tries to give back to the community through fundraising for local charities and volunteering for local events.
Ambassadors have a week of training before the school year begins. Samantha Dark, an Attica sophomore, was one of the ambassadors that moved into the dorms a week early to accustom herself to the ins and outs of all of the HutchCC programs and buildings.
“This was a great opportunity to expand my knowledge of where everything was located,” Dark said. “Moving in a week early and training with the other ambassadors really helped settle my nerves as a freshman, as I felt a lot more comfortable.”
Aside from tours and office hours, ambassador responsibilities also include welcoming new students on recruitment day.
“This experience has been so amazing for me. Not only have I met so many awesome, inspiring friends and campus staff, I’ve fallen in love with the college and community,” Dark said. “I would do it all over again if I could. Hutch has become my home away from home, and that’s truly a blessing.”