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Peabody is the building, Jack is the dog, and I'm Dean J (she/her, btw).

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Welcome to the blog and thanks for reading!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Happy Birthday, CavDog (and a note for Instagram users)

It's almost a shame that CavDog's birthday comes at the time of year when students aren't around. His most favorite days are ones that include lots of hanging out with students. I guess that's to be expected when he's been to 39 Days on the Lawn!




The only thing that would get him more excited: crashing a breakfast party in a Lawn room and being welcomed with cream cheese.


CavDog celebrated his birthday without much fanfare yesterday. He's now seven years old!


By the way, if you are on Instagram, take a look at the @UVa_Summer account and the #uvasummer tag. The @UVa_Summer account is the work of a team of students who are working here over the summer. People all over Grounds are using the #uvasummer hashtag to show you what lives is like here when most of the students are away. It's a fun look into a part of UVa that many people don't experience!

Of course, I hope you'll also follow me, @UVaDeanJ.




Friday, June 13, 2014

Are You Reading Hoo Stories, the Student Blog?

A good number of UVa students stay in Charlottesville each summer to do various things. Some take classes to open up space in their schedules, some work, some do research, and some do a combination of those things. We're lucky that fantastic students opt to stay in town to work in our office every year. And while I love every season of our cycle, summer might be my favorite time because we get to see the summer student staff every single day.

For the last several years, the summer interns have taken over the HooStories blog. The blog passes from one group of students to the next, so the archive goes back several years. This year's group has hit the ground running and filled the blog with posts in a very short period of time. I think they've written more this month than almost any other group of students that has take over the blog!

If you aren't reading, you have to go check HooStories out!

http://hoostories.blogspot.com/

Monday, June 09, 2014

2014-2015 First-Year Essay Questions

I've been posting our essay questions every June since 2007. It's always a nice way to mark the end of an application season and the beginning of a new one.

Towards the end of every reading season, we gather to talk about which essay questions elicited great responses, which ones could be tweaked to be better, and which essays we'd like to retire. We often pull students into our discussions to get their perspectives. Some of the specialty schools provide feedback and direction, too.

There are some questions on our application that prompt students to write interesting essays year after year, so we don't feel the need to change them. They've almost become traditions here, though the applicants rarely know this since few have looked at the application before.


You'll write one essay for the general Common Application and then you'll answer our essay prompts on the our "Member Screen" along with other questions that are specific to UVa. The Common App folks posted the main essay questions back in February. Here are ours:


2014-2015 First-Year Application Essay Questions


1.    We are looking for passionate students to join our diverse community of scholars, researchers, and artists.  Answer the question that corresponds to the school/program to which you are applying in a half page or roughly 250 words. 
  • College of Arts and Sciences - What work of art, music, science, mathematics, or literature has surprised, unsettled, or challenged you, and in what way?
  • School of Engineering and Applied Sciences - U.Va. engineers are working to solve problems that affect people around the world, from our long-term water purification project in South Africa to continuing to research more efficient applications of solar power. However, most students start small, by using engineering to make a difference in daily life. If you were given funding for a small engineering project that would make your everyday life better, what would you do?
  • School of Architecture - Describe an instance or place where you have been inspired by architecture or design.
  • School of Nursing - Discuss experiences that led you to choose the School of Nursing.
  • Kinesiology Program - Discuss experiences that led you to choose the kinesiology major.


2. Answer one of the following questions in a half page or roughly 250 words.
  • What’s your favorite word and why?
  • We are a community with quirks, both in language (we’ll welcome you to Grounds, not campus) and in traditions. Describe one of your quirks and why it is part of who you are.
  • Student self-governance, which encourages student investment and initiative, is a hallmark of the U.Va. culture. In her fourth year at U.Va., Laura Nelson was inspired to create Flash Seminars, one-time classes which facilitate high-energy discussion about thought-provoking topics outside of traditional coursework. If you created a Flash Seminar, what idea would you explore and why?
  • While a student at U.Va., Fulbright Scholar Rowan Sprague conducted groundbreaking research aimed at protecting the complex structure of honeybee hives. We know that colonies include bees acting in a diverse range of roles, all equally important to the success of the hive. What role will you play in the U.Va. hive?
  • To tweet or not to tweet?     

A note about word limits:
We aren't counting words on these. The word limits are there tell you what is expected. The forms where you paste in your essay will cut you off at some point, but there is a little bit of leeway. Generally, the main essay is in the vicinity of a page and the UVa questions should be about half of a page. You aren't writing a term paper, but a concise, thoughtful statement that conveys your voice and personality.

Friday, June 06, 2014

The Class of 2018 is full

This afternoon, we'll email first-year students on the waiting list to let them know that the Class of 2018 is now full. Their SIS pages will also update with the same message.

After considering the size of the first-year class and the spaces available in the student body, I regret to inform you that we will not be able to offer you admission this year. Our first-year class is full and I believe it would be unfair to keep your name on the waiting list any longer.

We sincerely appreciate your interest in the University of Virginia and wish you the best of luck in all of your future endeavors. If you are interested in pursuing the possibility of transferring to the University after one or two years in another college or university, please visit our transfer page to learn more about this process.

Sincerely,

Greg W. Roberts
Dean of Admission
University of Virginia

I know it was a long wait and this is disappointing news. I hope you can look at your chosen school and move forward with you plans to go there with excitement.

Thank you so much for being part of this blog.  Best wishes for a wonderful summer and exciting start to your college career!