Graduate Admissions and Strategic Enrollment Management

25 - 30 October, 2015


This delegation from Finnish research universities and Ministry of Education will explore best practices and trends in graduate admissions and strategic enrollment management.  Participants will visit institutions in Washington, DC, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey and New York, to discuss graduate student recruitment, the application process, student selection, strategic enrollment strategies, and graduate programs. The group will learn about graduate admissions from expert speakers and through direct observation at private and public universities. The seminar will focus on comparing U.S. as well as current and emerging Finnish strategies in the area and identifying possible applications of the American practice to the Finnish system. There are 13 members in the delegation.


Participants will travel to Washington, DC, and New York City, NY for a five-day study tour. The program will consist of a day-long introductory workshop in Washington, DC, as well as site visits in Washington, DC, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey and New York, with six site visits to public and private universities (two in Maryland, one in Delaware, one in New Jersey and two in New York City), and two debriefing meetings.

Study Tour Report


>> Study Tour Report (pdf)


>> Download List of Delegation Members and CVs

>> Download Discussion Themes and Questions

>> Download Institutional Profiles for Campus Visits

>> Study Tour Photos

>>Study Tour Program (pdf)


Day 1: Sunday, October 25

Pre-seminar introductory meeting and informal introductory dinner.


ntroductory Meeting, IIE
  • Terhi MölsäExecutive Director, The Fulbright Center, Finland
  • Karoliina KokkoSenior Program Manager, The Fulbright Center, Finland
  • Jeffrey HopperDirector, Institute of International Education, Local logistics coordinator for the study tour delegatio
6:00pm Informal Dinner, Old Ebbitt Grill

Day 2: Monday, October 26

Full-day opening seminar. Tour of the Embassy building and opening dinner at the Embassy of Finland.      

 Institute of International Education (IIE), Washington, DC
8:30–9:00am Breakfast, Welcome and Participant Introductions
  • Terhi MölsäExecutive Director, The Fulbright Center, Finland
  • María de los Ángeles Crummett, PhDExecutive Director, Council for International Exchange of Scholars, and Deputy Vice President, Institute of International Education

Introduction to U.S. Higher Education and U.S. Graduate Education System
Presenters will give an overview of the role and structure of higher education and graduate education in the United States.

Higher Education in the United States

An Overview to Graduate Education in United States

Council on Higher Education Accreditation

  • Jan Arminio, PhD, Higher Education Program Director and Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences, George Mason University
  • Svetlana FiliatreauPhD, Manager of Global Learning Integration in the Office of Global Strategy, George Mason University
  • Rodney Hopson, PhD, Professor in the College of Education and Human Development, George Mason University

Panelists from state university systems will discuss how and when institutions collaborate within a state system, the decentralized nature of state systems, the role of the flagship institution, and the challenges of implementing system-wide strategies.

  • Steve Hahn, Vice Provost for Enrollment Management, University of Wisconsin – Madison
  • Charles Caramello, PhDAssociate Provost for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Graduate School, University of Maryland, College Park

University System of Maryland

11:45am-12:45pm Lunch with invited speakers

Strategic Enrollment Management Overview and Institution Case Study: The George Washington University

Presenters will discuss strategic enrollment management at the graduate level at The George Washington University (GWU).


  • Tom Green, PhD, Associate Executive Director, Consulting and SEM, AACRAO


  • Chris Storer, PhD, Executive Director, Graduate Programs and Admissions, The George Washington University
  • Adina Lav, Assistant Provost for International Enrollment, The George Washington University


2:30–2:45pm Coffee break

Graduate-Level SEM Goal Setting and Implementation: Digging Deeper into Higher Level SEM Management – AACRAO

Presenters will delve deeper into higher-level SEM strategies and focus in on any particular areas participants wish to address, such as financial planning or strategy implementation.


Finnish Embassy, Washington, DC

Evening at the Finnish Embassy, Washington, DC
Tour of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified Embassy building and dinner hosted by the Ambassador of Finland Kirsti Kauppi


Day 3: Tuesday, October 27

Morning site visit to the University of Maryland, College Park; afternoon site visit to Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. Overnight stay in Baltimore, Maryland.

University of Maryland (UMD), College Park, Maryland

University of Maryland, College Park: Graduate Admissions at a Large Public Research Institution

The University of Maryland, College Park is a public research university, and one of 12 Maryland institutions of higher education in the University System of Maryland. As the flagship institution in the University System of Maryland, the University of Maryland will offer unique insights into admissions at a large state-wide public institution.

See also The Graduate Catalog of University of Maryland.



Lunch at University of Maryland, College Park with presenters

12:30–1:00pm Visit to Campus Bookstore: Branding of Universities
1:00–3:00 pm Travel to Baltimore, MD
Johns Hopkins University (JHU), Baltimore, Maryland
3:00 – 5:30pm

Johns Hopkins University: Department-Managed Graduate Admissions, SEM Comparison and Enrollment Technology

Johns Hopkins University is a private research institution and a founding member of the American Association of Universities. Johns Hopkins promotes a culture of mentorship and engagement within doctoral programs. As the first research university in the United States, Johns Hopkins will provide insight into its unique goals for its graduate students and how admissions criteria are centered around those goals.



Welcome Remarks and Introductions

  • Matthew Roller, PhD, Vice Dean for Graduate Education and Centers & Programs



The Complex Technology of Graduate Admissions and Enrollment Software

  • Rajen ShresthaInterim Director of the Graduate Admissions and Enrollment

Panel Discussion on Department-Managed Graduate Admissions

  • Vince Hilser, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Biology
  • Elisabeth Strowick, PhD, Professor and Department Chair, Department of German and Romance Languages and Literatures; Co-Director, Max Kade Center for Modern German Thought



A Comparative Look at Strategic Enrollment Management: Graduate vs. Undergraduate Enrollment

  • Ellen Kim, Director of Undergraduate Admissions


4:45–5:00pm Additional time for questions

Student-led guided walking tour of campus


Day 4: Wednesday, October 28

Morning site visit at the University of Delaware. Mid-program debrief en route to New York, NY.

9:00–10:30am Travel to Newark, DE
University of Delaware (UDEL), Newark, Delaware

University of Delaware: The Graduate Application Process and Department-Managed Graduate Admissions

The University of Delaware is a private research university but receives public funding for being a land-grant, sea-grant, space-grant, and urban-grant state-supported research institution. The university has a unique system for graduate student admissions, which allows applicants to self-manage their applications documents.



Overview of Graduate Admissions and Strategic Enrollment Management

  • Ann Ardis, PhD, Interim Vice Provost for Graduate and Professional Programs

Slate and University of Delaware Graduate Application Process

Designed and developed exclusively for higher education admissions, Slate is a solution that can handle the breadth and depth of modern admissions. Encompassing CRM, outreach, travel management, online applications, and online reading, Slate is trusted by more than 250 colleges and universities, including the University of Delaware.


Panel Discussion: “The Decision Makers”, Graduate Department Coordinators

Moderator: Mary Martin, Associate Vice Provost, Graduate & Professional Education

  • Kenneth E. Barner, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Electrical Engineering
  • Jennifer Gregan, PhD, Senior Academic Advisor and Associate Professor, International Business Studies
  • Debra Hess-Norris, Chair and Professor Art Conservation and Photographic Conservator, Henry Francis DuPont Chair in Fine Arts
  • Jeanne WarringtonAssistant to the Chair, Physical Therapy Department

Lunch at the University of Delaware with panelists and other experts from the University of Delaware


Travel to NYC: Midway Debriefing and Group Discussion en Route


  • Terhi MölsäExecutive Director, The Fulbright Center, Finland


Day 5: Thursday, October 29

Visits to Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ and Columbia University in New York, NY followed by an evening reception with the Consul General of Finland.

8:45–10:00am Travel to New Brunswick, New Jersey
Rutgers University (Rutgers), New Brunswick, New Jersey

Rutgers University Graduate School: A Decentralized System for Recruitment and Student Selection

Rutgers University is a public research university and the eighth oldest college in the United States. The university has eighteen graduate degree-granting units including three graduate schools and a number of graduate professional degree programs. Rutgers has a decentralized enrollment strategy for graduate admissions in which each of the 70 degree-granting programs recruits independently.

Welcome Remarks and Introduction:                              

Panel Presentations:

  • Urmi Otiv, Director, Center for Global Services
  • Greg Costalas, Senior Program Coordinator, Center for Global Services
  • Colin Jager, PhD, Professor of English, and Past Chair of Admissions for the Graduate Program in English Literature
  • Matt Sills, PhD, Concentration Coordinator, Drug Discovery and Development, Professional Science Master’s Program
  • Gerben Zylstra, PhD, Director, Microbial Biology Graduate Program and Distinguished Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology
  • Richard Padgett, PhD, Co-director, Molecular Biosciences Graduate Program and Professor of Molecular Biology & Biochemistry
  • Linda Costa, Director of Graduate and Professional Admissions

Lunch at Rutgers University with panelists and ASLA-Fulbright Graduate Grantee 2013-2014/Fulbright Center Renewal Grantee 2014-2015, 2015-2016 Niina Vuolajärvi

Finnish Applicant and Student Perspective on U.S. Graduate Admissions

1:00-2:30pm Travel from New Brunswick to Columbia University
Columbia University (Columbia), New York City, New York

Panel Discussion: Columbia University: Managing a Highly Selective Acceptance Process and International Admissions

Columbia University is a private Ivy League research university and prides itself on its international programs and global presence. With a lower than 20% acceptance rate for graduate students, Columbia can speak to its strict admissions criteria and student selection practices.                                        


Finland-U.S. Comparative View on Graduate Admissions
Discussion with Miikka Rokkanen, PhD

  • Miikka Rokkanen, PhD, Assistant Professor, Member of the Graduate Admissions Committee 2014-2015, Department of Economics, Columbia University


Reception Hosted by the Consul General of Finland Jukka Pietikäinen Consul General Residence, Fifth Avenue, New York City

Guests include U.S. higher education experts, Finnish and American grantees and alumni of the Fulbright Center and special guests.


Day 6: Friday, October 30

Morning visit to the City University of New York and final debrief.

The City University of New York (CUNY), New York City, New York

The City University of New York (CUNY), Graduate Center: Recruiting for Doctoral Programs in an Urban Setting

The City University of New York is a public university system of New York, NY and the largest urban university in the United States. The CUNY Graduate Center competes with many other universities in the New York area for quality students in a widely accessible system. They prioritize recruitment for doctoral programs and will highlight best practices for student selection.


Lunch with Final Debrief and Group Discussion, IIE


  • Terhi Mölsä, Executive Director, Fulbright Center, Finland



Yliopistoilta saamiemme palautteiden perusteella Fulbright Centerin seuraavan, järjestyksessään seitsemännen, U.S. study tour -opintomatkan, teemaksi on valittu Graduate Admissions and Strategic Enrollment Management. Opintomatka järjestetään 26.10.-30.10.2015.

Matkan sisältö

Viikon kestävän opintomatkan sisältö räätälöidään vastaamaan osallistujien tarpeita ja se suuntautuu kohteisiin, joissa vierailemalla pystytään saavuttamaan parhaiten matkalle asetetut tavoitteet. Matkaa edeltää valmistelutyöpaja, jossa kartoitetaan osallistujien tavoitteet, kysymykset sekä kohdetoiveet. Fulbright Center huolehtii yhteistyössä paikallisten partnereiden kanssa opintomatkojen käytännön järjestelyistä, suunnittelee matkan ohjelman, järjestää vierailut eri kohteisiin ja hankkii tarvittavat asiantuntijapuhujat.

Fulbright Centerillä on yli 60 vuoden kokemus työskentelystä yhdysvaltalaisten koulutusalan toimijoiden ja asiantuntijoiden kanssa. Fulbright Center on järjestänyt aiemmin kuusi opintomatkaa Yhdysvaltoihin erilaisista korkeakoulutuksen aiheista. Tutustu aiemmin järjestettyjen opintomatkojen ohjelmiin ja antiin.


Lopullinen osallistumismaksu riippuu aina osallistujamäärästä (yhteiset kustannukset jaetaan osallistujien kesken), matkakohteen/-kohteiden valinnasta (esim. sisältyykö matkaan USAn sisäisiä lentoja ja ovatko kohteet kalliimmilla metropolialueilla vai niiden ulkopuolella) sekä dollarin kurssista. Osallistujamaksu tarkentuu, kun osallistujamäärä on selvillä sekä matkakohteet päätetty. Fulbright Center maksaa osallistujien puolesta osallistumismaksun etukäteen ja laskuttaa osallistumismaksun matkan jälkeen toteutuneiden todellisten kustannusten mukaan.

Matkan osallistumismaksu asettuu todennäköisesti 3000-4000 euron välille. Viimeisimpien opintomatkojen osallistumismaksut ovat vaihdelleet 2600 – 3000 euron välillä osallistujaa kohti. Osallistumismaksu sisältää kaikki ohjelman kulut Yhdysvalloissa: osallistujien hotellit, paikallismatkat, ohjelmaan sisältyvät ruokailut ja kahvit, seminaari-, kokoustila- ja materiaalikustannukset, seminaaripuhujien ja -järjestäjien matka- ja hotellikulut, sekä paikallisen yhteistyötahon (IIE) järjestelykulut ja ohjelmahallinnointi USAssa. Osallistumismaksu on all inclusive. Fulbright Center ei laskuta matkasta järjestely- eikä ohjelmahallinnointikustannuksiaan.

Osallistumismaksun lisäksi matkalle lähtijöiden/matkalaisten taustaorganisaatioiden kustannettavaksi tulee lennot Suomen ja Yhdysvaltojen välillä sekä päivärahat.


Mikäli olet kiinnostunut matkasta olethan yhteydessä mahdollisimman pian tai viimeistään 20.2.2015. Jos et itse pääse mukaan, voit myös ehdottaa paikan/paikkojen varaamista omalle organisaatiollesi ja ehdottaa samalla myös osallistujaa/osallistujia. Optimaalinen osallistumismäärä (myös kustannusten vuoksi) on 10-12. Matkalle on jo ilmoittautunut 10 henkilöä.


Olethan yhteydessä mahdollisissa lisäkysymyksissä ja jos haluat keskustella aiheesta lisää. Lisätietoja saat ohjelmapäällikkö Karoliina Kokolta,, p. 044 5535 268 sekä apulaisjohtaja Johanna Lahdelta, p. 044 5525 278.