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Picture Yourself at Berkeley project reaches out to connect with prospective students

28 September 2009

A new service offered by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions (OUA) helps prospective students envision themselves as a member of the UC Berkeley community. The new site, called "Picture Yourself at Berkeley," allows individuals to sign up for a personalized web page offering campus information tailored to their specific interests.

The "Picture Yourself at Berkeley" project both provides prospective students with a single source for UC Berkeley admissions communications and allows the admissions office to reach prospective students in far-flung locations in a cost-effective way, says OUA Director Walter Robinson.

OUA's priorities are to "maintain the standards of UC Berkeley, and recruit, select, admit, assist, and enroll an academically excellent, highly accomplished, and broadly diverse freshman and transfer class," notes Robinson. "Even in budget-conscious times — perhaps especially during these times — we will continue our mission. At pictureyourself.berkeley.edu, prospective students from all corners of the state, all regions of the country, and all countries around the globe can sign up and receive information about how to apply to UC Berkeley."

To create a personalized web page, prospective students fill out a short form at pictureyourself.berkeley.edu — selecting the appropriate category (freshman or transfer student ) and answering a few questions. After submitting the online form, they receive login information for a personalized web page, where they'll find information related to their personal academic and extracurricular interests as to what's happening on campus. Their email addresses are added to the OUA list, so they can receive additional event invitations, information on advising opportunities, and admissions news.

Berkeley's admissions receptions are getting a technological twist as well. Instead of the traditional receptions, which are often limited, Robinson says, "to those who live nearby or who can fit the date into their schedules," OUA is offering online presentations, also known as "webinars." Prospective students can register online, login to a live presentation, and ask questions of UC Berkeley students and admissions staff. The admissions office also plans to host group chats, virtual fairs with CollegeWeekLive (including a special University of California Day), Skype presentations to schools, online advising, and other online admissions offerings.

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