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November 2, 2018
A Parent's Perspective on the Admission Process
Beth Anne Spacht

As a 7-year veteran in the world of higher education, I’ve watched many families tackle the college admission process. Parents help their students in very different ways but the one thing they all have in common –the hope that their child will be happy, healthy, and successful.

So, what is the best way for parents to help their students during this momentous time? I am not a parent and do not pretend to understand the complexity of parenting a high school senior on the precipice of one of the biggest investments of time and money in their lifetime. Luckily, I have two uniquely qualified colleagues to dole out advice: Gil Villanueva, Associate Vice President and Dean of Admission; and Marilyn Hesser, Executive Director of Admission. Together, they have a combined 62 years of admission experience. Gil is parent to one college sophomore and one high school student. Marilyn is the parent of three young adults.

September 7, 2018
"How's Your Biology Program?" (And Other Not So Awesome Questions)
Tom Nicholas

We’re still awaiting cooler fall weather here in Richmond, but our students have returned to campus! That also means that our Admission Officers are gearing up to hit the road and visit your high school, college fair, or your neighborhood coffee shop for a quick Spider Chat. Whether you are a senior polishing your admission essay or a junior starting the college search process, fall is a great time to make connections with your admission officer at the University of Richmond and other colleges you might be applying to this fall.

July 13, 2018
Mythbusters: Increasing Your Chances of Admission
Tom Nicholas

“How can I improve my chances of admission?” I usually start to hear that question around this time of year. By October, I’m hearing it on an almost daily basis. It’s understandable that this is one of the most common questions we get from high school seniors beginning the application process – guidebooks, web searches, and the media would have you believe that there are a myriad of hidden tricks that can significantly boost your odds of getting in (if you could just figure out what they are).

June 29, 2018
Top 5 Reasons to Start Your Essays Early
Beth Anne Spacht

There’s no time like the present. The early bird catches the worm. Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today. Just do it.

We dole out advice frequently and exhaustively throughout the college search process. And I mean the collective We – teachers, counselors, admission professionals, classmates, friends, family, and strangers who find out that you are a high school senior. Whether helpful or not, offering advice is what we [Admission] do.

So here are our top 5 reasons to start working on your college essays early.

March 2, 2017
To EA or not to EA?
Beth Anne Spacht

The college admission process offers a plethora of application options: Rolling, Early Action, Restrictive Early Action, Single-Choice Early Action, Early Decision, sometimes Early Decision I and Early Decision II, and Regular Decision. There are also scholarship deadlines and priority deadlines, and don’t forget separate deadlines for financial aid forms such as the FAFSA and CSS Profile. Are you tired just reading about the many options? Be prepared. You are going to need a lot of organizational tools.

Richmond is excited to announce that we are offering Early Action (EA) for the 2017-18 admission cycle. This opens up a completely new timeline for you. Apply by November 1 under the Early Action plan and hear back by mid-January. It’s non-binding, so you will still have until May 1 to enroll.

August 15, 2016
Tips for Writing Supplemental Essays
Tom Nicholas

Ah, those pesky supplemental essays. Just when you think you’ve got your college application pretty much all together, you realize that several colleges where you’re applying want you to write another essay. How should you approach this additional task?

September 14, 2015
5 Tips for Getting Insider Insight from Students
Beth Anne Spacht

Along with the greatly anticipated return of college football and pumpkin-spice-everything to the East Coast, the arrival of September means one very important thing for the faculty and staff at Richmond: students are (finally!) back on campus. As excited as we are for the change of pace, it’s great news for prospective students, too.

June 22, 2015
The Right Approach to Writing Your College Essays
Tom Nicholas

Recently, I’ve given several presentations to rising high school seniors on writing your college essays. Each time I do this, I always ask students what makes them most anxious about essays, and two answers invariably come up more than any others: (1) "I know essays are really important," and (2) "I don’t really know what colleges are looking for."

May 19, 2015
Planning Your Senior Year Schedule
Beth Anne Spacht

This one’s for you, juniors.

September 5, 2014
Seven (More) Questions to Ask Colleges
Tom Nicholas

A little while back, we ran a post called Seven Questions to Ask Colleges, designed for high school juniors as they started to explore colleges and make their first college visits.

As we head into autumn, those questions are just as valid for high school seniors to ask. But with the application process and college itself so much closer, and with more in-depth visit options often available to seniors, there are also some deeper questions that you ought to be asking when you visit campuses now. Here are seven suggestions.

Tom NicholasTom Nicholas
Senior Assistant Director of Admission 


A Richmond alumnus (Class of 2007), Tom has been working and blogging for the Office of Admission since he graduated. He loves his alma mater and the city that shares its name.

Learn more about Tom


Beth Anne SpachtBeth Anne Spacht
Assistant Director of Admission


Beth Anne was a double major at Richmond (English and Latin American & Iberian Studies) and now enjoys helping prospective students discover the best of her alma mater.

Learn more about Beth Anne

The University of Richmond is a highly ranked liberal arts university offering an extraordinary combination of the liberal arts with law, business, leadership studies, and continuing education. The university is consistently named a best value in higher education by leading publications.

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