Hi everyone. And welcome to this week's episode of the Online Road Map podcast sponsored by WVU Online. And this week we are meeting with the WVU Online admissions coaches. So we have with us today, Gary Phillips, Kelly Legg, and Ian Hippensteele. So welcome to the show guys. I wanted to get started today by introducing, if you guys could give me a little bit of information about who you are and your roles at the university.
So Kelly, would you want to kick us off? Sure. Thanks again, Amber. My name is Kelly Legg and I'm an admissions coach for WVU Online. Currently I work with the programs in the college of business and economics the college of creative arts and the college of physical activity and sports sciences. It's great.
Thank you so much, Kelly. So we'll move over to Gary. So Gary, if you could tell us a little bit about who you are and what colleges you work with. Yeah, for sure. My name is Gary Phillips. I've worked with the programs, college of education and human services, the Statler college of engineering and mineral resources and the Davis college of agricultural natural resources and design.
So I get to represent a pretty broad spectrum of programs, and it's really exciting for me because I am actually a graduate. I have my master's degree from the college of education and human services, and it's great to be working with them again. So I'm a strong ties back to the university, which is really good to hear as well.
And last, but certainly not least. If you could tell us a little bit about who you are in the colleges that you work with. Yeah. Hi everyone. Hi Amber. Thanks for having me on today. My name's Ian Hippensteele. I'm an admissions coach. I work specifically with the Eberly college of arts and sciences, as well as the school of nursing and the school of public health.
Very cool. So we have coaches from every WVU Online program with us today. So Gary, if you wouldn't mind, tell us a little bit about your role with WVU Online. What is the WVU Online admissions? Yeah, we're here to help you really from the very start of the process. Basically as soon as it occurs to you here at WVU Online. They offer a program that will help me meet my professional or educational goals. I want to know more or I want to know what to do next. Every program, a website has one of our pictures on it with contact information so that you can reach out to us immediately. We'll answer questions or help you navigate that process.
We're here to make it easy on you. Very cool. And can you tell us a little bit about the ways that WVU Online admissions coaches reach out to students? Like, do they call or email or how are you guys available to students? Yeah, definitely. Thanks. I would say that WVU Online admissions coaches are really flexible and adaptable and are basically up for a variety of communication styles, depending on how, depending on what the student depending on work on what works best with.
So we're available for instance, via a phone call. You know, we all have a direct line that students or prospective students can just, you know, pick up the phone and dial if that's what works best for them. We're also available via email. And then finally, finally we are available via Calendly which can help us basically schedule Zoom calls. So we're available video via video chat as well. That's great. So kind of really meeting our students where they need to be when they need to be, which is awesome. So, Kelly, can you tell us a little bit about information sessions? I know a lot of our programs offer info sessions. So can you tell us a little bit about how a student would go about registering for one of those and what it, what a general information session would kind of look like for a student?
Yeah, definitely. The info sessions are typically held by each college. Most of them are on a particular day of the month. You know, it may be the first Tuesday or like the second Thursday of each month. But as the admissions coach, I would be able to tell you know, the date based on the program that you're interested in.
Typically there's a registration page that I would send to you via email. It's also available on the web pages. You would just complete the registration and then you'll be given the information to log in on the particular day in time that the session has being offered. And the nice thing about this session is it gives you a chance to meet typically the program director.
We go through the program, talk about, you know, how you apply, what you're going to learn. You know, all the benefits by attending as a student. So they're really beneficial. You're going to get a ton of information and quite often it will help you decide, you know, if this is the route that you want to pursue.
So I always really recommend them to students. I just think it's another piece that's important. As part of the process of making the decision. And it's also a great opportunity to kind of know some of the other prospects that are interested. You know, they may ask some questions that you may not have thought of.
So again, overall, it's just a great piece of information again, to help you make that important decision. Very cool. What a great way to, to network too, with the different colleges and the different administration within the colleges. So meeting either faculty or, you know, even, even as high up as an assistant or associate Dean, I know are presenting during this info session.
So it's really a great way for our students to get to know the programs a little bit closer as well. Which is. Really, really great. So I like to act as a little bit of a travel guide during these podcasts. So I love to ask all of our guests, where are your favorite travel destination is or vacation spot or something that they like to do during the summer.
So, Ian, I'll go ahead and start with you. Do you have a favorite thing to do during the summer or a favorite place to visit that you would like to tell our audience about. Yeah. My, my wife and my two and a half year old golden doodle, and I typically in the summer, like to vacation anywhere where it's a little bit cooler, ideally by the water, you know?
Lakes oceans, what have you, anything, a water-based is, is definitely the name of the game over the summer. So this coming summer, we are thinking about taking a trip to the outer banks. We're kind of looking forward to that. Otherwise you know, definitely just my recommendation would be anywhere that you can stay as cool as possible and just see the sites.
That's awesome. I love the outer banks and I also love the Netflix show. The outer banks. If you haven't seen it, check it out. Moving on. Let's talk to Gary. Gary, why do you like to go? Or what do you like to do during the summer months? I love as often as I can to make it down to the Monongahela national forest.
I actually worked there as a wilderness ranger for a couple summers when I was an undergrad. So I feel really like personally attached to some of the places down there, like Seneca rocks, Dolly saw it. It's an Otter Creek and down in that general area. There are so many little like diners and pizza places.
I love doing a day of hiking getting really gross and disgusting and hot. So kind of the opposite of what Ian likes to do. And then stopping by someplace like that and grabbing a pizza place like that. So, yeah, my wife and my seven year old son don't share my enthusiasm for those kinds of activities.
So occasionally I'll do solo trips. Occasionally I'll be able to convince them to join me. But. Family-wise I think we do like into the beach and occasionally kitchen, some craft fairs and festivals that are close by to us right now. Very, very cool. It makes sense. And you are the Davis college guy, so this totally makes sense.
I love it. I love it. Thank you so much. Kelly, where do you like to go? What do you like to do during the summer? Well, you know how some people like to go to the same place every summer, you know, a lot of less Virginia and they like to go to Myrtle beach every summer. Well, bill and I are kind of the opposite.
We like to go to a different place every time that we can travel. So our goal is to go to all the 50 States in the United States. We don't have like a particular favorite yet, but we kind of need to get into the Northwest section. So like Oregon and Washington are still on our list. And I've kind of investigated, like maybe trying to go to Seattle this summer, but still with COVID happening.
I don't know, you know, how much we can actually see and do, but if I do have like one place that I would travel to on a regular basis, it would be to see family. And most of them are in Northern Iowa and there's a Lake there called Lake Okoboji. So that would be like my favorite place. To travel on a regular basis, but yeah, I'm all about exploring and I still want to get to, there's still a lot of countries in Europe.
I'd love to see. So yeah. I have a long bucket list that I love to travel. Quite fun. Awesome. How many States have you been to so far Kelly? I think it's 41. I'd have to sit down and actually Mark them off. But I know I still have Washington, Oregon, Montana, Idaho, for sure. And then I have for months. Well, North Dakota.
So, you know, it's kind of the ones that aren't heavily populated in are hard to get to. Yeah. It makes it a little more difficult. Yeah. I've heard I've heard really good things about Idaho. I heard that it's beautiful. Just picturesque. So that's definitely on my bucket list as well. So maybe, maybe girls' trip.
I love it. So that's awesome. Thank you guys so much for giving us a little piece of some, some new places to go to check them out. Or just some of your favorites. It's awesome to hear about. So in terms of summer classes, summer is right around the corner. Hard to believe. Although the weather is starting to look up in the great state of West Virginia, so that's all good.
What advice would you guys give our students? And Kelly, we'll go ahead and start with you. What advice would you give our students about taking a class during the summer? I think summer's the perfect opportunity. If there's one particular course that you really need to devote a lot of time and focus on because then you can take just that one class and do well in it.
And you know, it may lessen your load to the following semester. So I think that's one of the key things with the summer course. It's a great piece of advice. Thank you, Gary. Anything that you would add to that? Yeah, just that I think summer's a great opportunity to keep making progress on your decree all year long.
One of the things that we want to try and be for our students is flexible online program. What we're all about. So a lot of our students are taking. Courses part-time while they're working or have families or any number of things that might be going on with them. So being able to continue to do that during the summer it adds that much more flexibility cause you can use utilize the whole year that way even going part-time you could still finish a full master's degree in two years.
Just taking advantage of summer courses that way. Very, very true. Very, very true. Thank you, Ian. Anything additional that you would add? Yeah, I think I definitely agree with everything Gary and Kelly mentioned. And really summer's just a great opportunity to you know, keep the momentum going, keep focused and as well, just basically get a head start, I would think on the year ahead.
So, you know, we kind of Think about the academic year as you know, from fall to spring, but it really doesn't have to be so summer can be either a continuation of like the previous academic year or basically a head start on the upcoming academic year. And you can definitely take a full, you know, range of credits over the summer and just really make some significant progress towards your goals.
Yeah, definitely. Summer's a great, a great way for students to, you know, catch up, get ahead or just work on something that they, they really enjoy. So this is all really great pieces of advice. I did have one final question and I'll ask each one of you, but what's one piece of advice that you would like to leave our students with about applying to WVU.
And Ian, I'll go ahead and kick it back to you. What's one piece of advice you would offer our students about applying to, to WVU. Yeah. Thanks. Great question. I would really say that it is a lot. Easier and less daunting than folks may think. You know, I work with a variety of programs and a variety of students.
And I think the common thread across all of them is that the application process itself is I think a lot less daunting than one may assume, you know, it's really just In keeping with, you know, we are WVU Online, right? So the application is entirely online. And I would say that just in general, it takes less time than folks might think.
So it's just a lot more it's, it's very attainable, you know, it's a lot the, the possibility is there and I think it's a lot more it's a lot more doable than you know, some folks might think. That's a great piece of advice. I know sometimes when you think about applying to places, it's like, Oh, I have to do all of this stuff, but it's so streamlined.
Right. And so it's just, it's a lot easier than what we might anticipate. That's great. Thank you, Kelly. Anything you would add to that or any piece of advice that you would like to offer to our students about applying. Sure. I totally agree. I agree with everything. Ian said, it is quite simple. I would also encourage students to go ahead and, and submit the application.
You know, quite often some students are hesitant and you know, they're like, what if I don't get in? But I mean, the only way you'll really know is to go ahead and apply. And, you know, we're available to answer any questions that you have about the application process. You know, if you need ideas and writing your statement of purpose, you know, I can tell you the things to focus on.
So again, we're available for any assistance. We want you to feel comfortable and confident that yes, you can do it. And, you know, you have nothing to lose. It's just a great opportunity for you to pursue you know, a degree at a great institution. So awesome. And definitely having the support of you guys kind of eases the mind right.
Of some of our students. So I know that's, that's good for our students to know as well. And Gary, what is your piece of advice? As far as students who want to apply to the university? I think Ian and Kelly both really hit the nail on the head right away. Just with the idea that it's easier than you think it is.
The hardest part by far is just getting started. And if you don't know how to do that, Give us a call, reach out to us. We can help you with that. We don't assume anybody is going to be an expert with the process because no one really applies to school, all that often in the grand scheme of things enough to be real familiar with the process, but that's what we're here to help you with.
That's what we work with, but we know the process and we can help you out with that. No matter what your familiarity may be as well. I had an individual call me awhile back and really say, Hey, I'm at square one. I'm a first-generation college student. What is graduate school? Explain it to me. I know that I need to have this credential to move forward in a career that I've chosen, but I really don't know the first thing about how it's structured, how it works, what the expectations are.
Can you help me with that? And I had a really long, great conversation with him and sharing everything that I could about what he might expect. And it just, it was a fun experience for one thing. And we got to set up ready to go. He's applying, he's going into a program. That's awesome. It's so good to know that you guys are here to support the students.
And I'm sure as students appreciate hearing a little bit more about who you guys are and where you like to go, what you like to do. That's always fun. It's even fun for me. So I really appreciate you guys taking some time out to meet with us today on the Online Road Map podcast. And until next time guys have a good day and we will talk to y'all soon.