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Working at CSU

Admissions Operations critical for student recruitment, admissions acceptance

January 23, 2009

100,000; 30,000; 20. By themselves, these numbers are merely numbers, standing alone in an undefined and meaningless way. But when applied to the Admissions Operations Unit in the Office of Admissions, these numbers take on a colorful, impressive, and encouraging meaning.

 Over 30,000 applications per year

In addition to entering data for and maintaining information about more than 100,000 prospective students – high school sophomores, juniors and seniors who ask for information about Colorado State University – the Admissions Operations Unit also processes domestic and international applications for new freshman, transfer applicants, graduate students, returning students, guest students, high school students taking Colorado State courses, and College of Veterinary Medicine applications. Processing over 30,000 total applications per year, this cumbersome task is taken on by the 20 members of this unit.

“They understand the importance of accuracy and pay great attention to detail,” explains Renee Orlick, director of Operations. “There is a continuous balance between quantity and quality.” With each of the 16 admissions processors handling up to 100 students per day, the role of this unit is to not only process applications, but also to enter data from potential students brought back by the recruiters who are often on the road. This data is then used to send specialized materials to potential students based on their needs and areas of interest. “This unit knows what they do impacts the students, other departments, and the university as a whole. Because they understand the big picture, they are both individually and as a team very motivated and have a great work ethic,” adds Orlick.

Currently, the unit is in the midst of their busiest time of the year. From mid-October to mid-March, the unit staffs up adding temporary workers to its roster. Other units within the Office of Admissions pitch in, too. However, because Colorado State has a rolling admissions policy – meaning applications are approved as soon as they arrive instead of during specific admission windows – the unit is always busy. Also, because the recruiters are always out meeting potential students and bringing back their data, the unit does not see a downtime.

Key behind-the-scenes unit at Colorado State

“Teamwork is key,” describes Orlick. “It’s not done alone.” The information systems people are a major part of the behind-the-scenes work that makes the entire system run. In recent years, the unit has received both new hardware and software, which comes with a new learning curve. Plus, this year the unit started imaging the applications. Now there is a digital copy of everything potential students include on and with their application. Orlick maintains, “The admissions systems people are so key to our success. We couldn’t do what we do without them.”

For their impressive efforts and diligent work to successfully help Colorado State recruit and maintain quality students, the Colorado State University Activities Board is presenting January’s special recognition to the Admissions Operations Unit. “It’s because of their detailed and efficient work that many excellent students have found their way to campus,” says CSUAB President Joann Cornell. “Many of the first Colorado State materials that these students see are a direct result of the correct management of data on this unit’s part.”


The 20 members of the Admissions Operations Unit will be presented with a luncheon by the CSUAB for their outstanding efforts.

If you would like to nominate a group, department, center, or program to be recognized by the CSU Activities Board, please send an e-mail to

Contact: Katie Boeder
Phone: (970) 491-0993