The recruitment and admissions team at the iSchool has been awarded the Promotion of Excellence Award from the Association for Graduate Enrollment Management (NAGAP). The award is presented to an individual or team that has "developed or implemented methodology demonstrating best practices, creativity, and/or innovation in graduate enrollment management that could serve as a model across the GEM [graduate enrollment management] profession." The iSchool team received this recognition for the Information Schools and Colleagues Collaborative (ISCC) Network, which was created during the pandemic when travel was restricted, limiting traditional recruitment efforts.
The network brings together information schools across the country and around the world to host virtual experiences. It has produced four virtual events for prospective students so far, which have resulted in increased visibility of the iSchool's programs and faculty. According to Moises Orozco Villicaña, director of enrollment management, event attendance grew from 75 prospective students at the start of this network to 600 participants for the most recent virtual recruitment event. In addition to the iSchool at the University of Illinois, other members of the core group that created the network include Simmons University; University of Southern California; University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis; Florida State University; University of Tennessee, Knoxville; University of Washington, Seattle; and Drexel University.
"We met and discussed the formation of the ISCC network at the American Library Association annual conference," said Orozco Villicaña. "The pandemic created a sense of urgency to share resources to virtually reach prospective students. I am also part of a subgroup that will present on the formation and success of the ISCC network at the upcoming GEM Summit."
In addition to hosting virtual events, the ISCC network provides GEM professionals with an opportunity to discuss emerging trends and challenges in recruitment practices, such as the PhD applicant interview process, enrollment trends, deferral management, funding, and yield efforts.
Emma Kopko, assistant director of recruitment and admissions, coordinated iSchool's participation in the recent INFOcon 2021, a collaborative three-day conference that showcased various traditional and nontraditional careers within the library and information sciences.
"With six faculty presenting and interacting with prospective students, the iSchool had the most faculty represented at INFOcon 2021," said Orozco Villicaña.
The recruitment and admissions team will be recognized at the NAGAP’s 2022 GEM Summit on April 21.