Herding cats. That is what it feels like being an Admissions Director getting ready for a recruiting trip. As I prepare to embark on a grueling, month-long travel schedule this November, I often feel that I must be forgetting something or someone. There are too many opportunities to miss airplanes, trains and appointments not to have something slip through the cracks.
It all starts with determining the destinations and then getting the necessary visas. This can take time as I need to send my passport all over the world for them. Last year I received my passport two hours before I had to leave on my trip! Then there is setting up all the meetings, planning the flights, hotels and getting the shots. Of course plans change en-route and it seems almost daily there are new people that want to meet and the inevitable rescheduling of meetings that occur. It is exhausting and exhilarating at the same time.
Every two or three days I know I will be changing countries and cultures. I will be changing currencies and customs. Business in Vietnam is different than Thailand or India or Turkey or Germany – the other countries I will be visiting. I have to shift gears accordingly and learn the subtleties and nuances of the various cultures.
The trust level is palpable and humbling between me and our international families; it has to be. Initially, my goal is to inform families about the value of being connected with Brentwood College School. Experience shows, once prospective students know about our school and begin to learn about us, the more interested they are in becoming partners in our diverse, culturally rich Canadian boarding school. Once they attend Brentwood as a student, I want to feel confident that the school I told them about is indeed identical to their experience. This is really important to me.
Travel allows me to enter their world; to learn about their customs and families so that when they do become students of Brentwood, I have a common bond that connects us together. It is at this time that I feel so privileged that we share worlds.