URI Admission Advisor Nancy Stricklin reported back to her colleagues about her ongoing international recruiting efforts:
In Kuwait, the college fair at the hotel was well attended, and I spent three hours talking to families. Culturally, the fathers have the decision-making power about where the son/daughter will go and what they will study. So, mostly I talked to fathers. It was a fascinating experience and I learned a lot about the people. One father asked me how much a 4-bedroom home near the campus in a nice neighborhood would cost, because he would want to buy one for his sons if they came to URI. I almost sold him mine! I have spent lots of time pointing to the great map in our brochure and explaining where RI is located. One father asked if we were near the river where the pilot landed the plane (remember the Hudson River landing?) You just never know what the next person is going to ask.
Next morning we flew to Abu Dhabi, which is in UAE (United Arab Emirates). The Minister of Education, who is part of the royal family, showed up unexpectedly and did a “ribbon cutting” to “open the fair.” Then he came table to table, and I spoke with him for about 5 minutes. It was quite amazing.
I just returned from two high school mini-fairs, one at an all boys’ school and the other at an all girls’ school. I loved those girls—all in uniforms with veils, but in so many ways no different from a typical teenager! We were mobbed and I ran out of materials by the end!
I feel really positive about making URI known in this region. In fact, I just got an email from the head of the scholarship department at the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company. He said he looks forward to sending students to our “esteemed university.”