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All systems go! It's Concordia Open House 2016

On October 29, the university welcomes prospective students at the biggest recruitment event of the year
October 17, 2016
By Sarah Buck

Thousands of visitors make Open House a high-energy event. | Photo on left by Warren Zelman. Photo on the right by Justin Desforges. Thousands of visitors make Open House a high-energy event. | Photos by Warren Zelman / Justin Desforges

The whole Concordia community is gearing up to meet prospective students on Open House and Portfolio Day. More than 5,000 visitors, including future students and their parents, siblings and friends, are expected to attend the annual event.

“The energy leading up to this year’s Open House is just tremendous,” says Director of Student Recruitment Matthew Stiegemeyer.

“We’ve been experiencing huge success, with record-high enrolment numbers — and that’s great inspiration for us in continuing our efforts to connect with potential future students.”

A visit to campus is often a deciding factor for prospective students.

“We hear time and again that the vibe on campus makes a big impression,” says Stiegemeyer. “It’s the sense that we’re invested in helping students achieve their goals, and we’re here to support them along the way.”

A personalized experience

At such a busy event, the focus remains on creating a tailored experience for visitors. Personalized itineraries are sent out ahead of time to give future students an idea of which presentations and activities they won’t want to miss, depending on their area of academic interest.

This year, Open House presents “What can I do with my major?”, a chance for future students to sit down with a career advisor. The hope is that students will emerge from a one-on-one consultation with a better sense of the professional paths that could open up for them down the road.

A future student stops by an information table on engineering and computer science. | Photo by Justin Desforges A future student stops by an info table on engineering and computer science. | Photo by Justin Desforges

“Open House is not just for the students who already have their future mapped out,” says Savvy Papayiannis, manager of Student Recruitment.

“We want to reach the people who could use a little help figuring out which academic path is right for them. We want prospective students to understand how their academic journey could unfold over time — and help them navigate the possibilities.”

Meeting different needs

The presentation called “My educational background is not ‘normal.’ What do I do?” is aimed at mature students, transfer students, students who were educated in another country and students who have not completed high school or CEGEP.

The goal is to help them understand how their background fits with Concordia’s admission requirements and programs.

Future students can then continue the conversation with professors and current Concordians by stopping by one of the more than 80 information tables representing the university’s departments, services and associations.

Call for volunteers

Every year, hundreds of students volunteer at Open House. This is key to the day’s success, says Papayiannis, adding that the response to the call for volunteers this year has been particularly strong.

“The volunteers’ enthusiasm — and their willingness to give up their Saturday during midterms — I believe comes from the fact that our students are feeling personally connected to the university. And they want to share that experience.”

Concordia's Open House is on Saturday, October 29 at the Sir George Williams (1515 Ste-Catherine St. W.) and Loyola campuses (7141 Sherbrooke St. W.). Register now to participate. Current Concordia students can also sign up to volunteer.


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