At LCC we have five Admissions recruiters who are continuously on the road representing LCC. Their work might at times seem invisible because they do not have a traditional desk job; however, their contribution to the work and mission of the LCC community is tremendous. We interviewed three recruiters, Ina from Albania, Angelina and Hanna from Ukraine, and asked them to share the details of their job.
Angelina and Hanna (from Left to Right)
Why did you decide to apply for the Admissions Recruiter position at LCC?
Ina: I wanted to work directly with high schoolers and guide them through the process of finding and choosing the university. LCC has impacted my life on so many levels, so I wanted to enable other students to have the same opportunity that I had.
Angelina: I started working for LCC’s Admissions Office in October, 2017. I chose to apply because I’ve always wanted to give back to my alma mater.
Hanna: I have wanted to come back to LCC as an employee since my early days as a student. I strongly believe in LCC’s vision and mission, and how it transforms the lives of all those who come in any capacity. Staff has a huge role in the transformation that happens in students’ lives, so I wanted to be a part of that someday and pay forward what was invested into me when I was a student. So when I heard that there was a job opening at LCC just at the time I was looking for a job in Ukraine, of course I applied.
What is the best part of your job? Are there any specific things that you look forward to while recruiting?
Ina: The smaller group meetings with the students. Seeing their perspectives change after talking together, and also seeing all the worry and questions slowly fade after they get all the information they need and that the process doesn’t look so scary anymore.
Angelina: The highlight of recruitment is seeing the pupils light up with excitement knowing that they can get a better education.
Hanna: The best part of my job is meeting the future generations of LCC students and starting to give them the LCC experience before they even set foot in Klaipeda. I really look forward to those moments during interviews (which are the last step in the admissions process) when we ask how they heard about LCC ,and the student begins with “I remember when you came to my school…”
What is the hardest part of your job? How do you deal with challenges?
Ina: Definitely establishing first contact with the schools. LCC is not really known in Albania, so until it gains some credibility, high school directors will always be a bit skeptical and not really responsive. I basically just have to push myself and be persistent, and keep calling or showing up, even when the attitude on the other side isn’t all that welcoming.
Angelina: It takes some time to re-adjust to the culture that works on last-minute appointments and spontaneity. It’s hard to plan things with precision.
Hanna: The hardest part is letting go of students who would be a really good fit for LCC, would thrive there, and yet decide not to come, often for financial reasons. Sometimes we have students whose parents are just not willing to pay; often even after a large financial aid award, the parents still plainly cannot support their child’s life in Lithuania. Those are the heartbreaking moments for both parties, the students and us as recruiters. Often, the best way to deal with those situations is to try to remain friends with the student, encourage them, and show them support in their decision. Because that is the LCC spirit – we do not dispose of relationships when they are no longer beneficial to us.
What does your travel schedule look like? How many cities have you already traveled to since you started?
Ina: The travel schedule depends on the period and the schools that are welcoming. 4 cities so far.
Angelina: I’ve been to a handful of cities already, maybe 10. I haven’t experienced the full recruitment cycle, so I haven’t had time to get tired of travelling yet. It’s still like a dream!
Hanna: I have visited 18 different cities in Ukraine because of my job. My travel schedule is quite busy; in fact, in the fall semester alone I spent 11 weeks on the road.
Since you are always on the go, how does it feel to not have a stable office you go to regularly?
Ina: I actually love being on the go and the flexibility, but because I have found that for Albanian students the one-on-one contact is more important, I have also created a small space as a personal office where students can come and get information.
Angelina: Not having an office to go to is hard; not having office hours is fantastic!
Hanna: That is why I like it when we come to LCC and can come to the admissions office. Sometimes I wish we had an office with co-workers right there, but most of the time we are so busy on the road that we do not have much time to think about being in the office: trains and buses become the new definition of an office.
Do you think it is easier to recruit high school students to the place you have graduated from yourself? Do you receive any requests from the students to reflect on your time at LCC?
Ina: YES!! That is actually the number one thing all of the inquiries turn to. PERSONAL EXPERIENCE. All the information regarding majors, financial aid and things like that, they can get easily online. It is the behind the scenes and student life, and experience as an Albanian in Lithuania that really attracts their interest and that they really want to know about. This is true for both the students and the parents.
Angelina: It definitely is easier to put myself in the shoes of the high school students, to give them some much-needed pointers. All the time. The most common question is as simple as “Are you happy you chose LCC?” to which I firmly say “Yes!”
Hanna: ? I joke sometimes that I could never sell anything other than LCC. It makes a world of difference to be able to relate to the students in areas like the process of decision-making before coming to LCC, or worrying about the financial side of things, or stressing about not knowing Lithuanian to function well in the country, etc. Also, it is very helpful to be able to give personal stories during our presentations and answer questions based on personal experience: I believe it adds credibility to our words and makes LCC more real in the eyes of the students and their teachers or parents.
Do you ever stumble upon situations in which things you have learned at LCC come into practice and/or are helpful?
Ina: Public speaking for sure I am glad for having had at least one presentation in a class each week. Also the skills of multitasking come in quite handy!
Angelina: Being flexible is a big one. Understanding that different people might need a different kind of approach goes a long way.
Hanna: Of course, all the time! LCC learning goes far beyond the academic disciplines. When a student comes to LCC, they learn life skills that vary depending on each student’s needs and talents. I certainly learned a great deal about interpersonal communication and conflict resolution when I was a student, and those skills come in very useful during parents’ meetings when a parent is being very distrusting. Also LCC places a great emphasis on critical thinking, and it is something that we could not survive without while being on the road. We often face situations when plans change at the last minute and schools back out on us, change times, dates, etc., and we have to figure out how to handle the schedule for the rest of the day, or how to fill it with something else not to waste our time in a city. In those moments I am very thankful for the experience LCC has given me.