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

There are fifteen years of posts here. The search box works well, but please consider the age of the posts when you find them. The college admission process changes over time!

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Welcome to the blog and thanks for reading!

Wednesday, April 30, 2008


Every school has its traditions and this morning, the Office of Admission took part in one.

The Beta Bridge is a prime location for publicizing activities and sending messages. Students show up in the middle of the night to paint the bridge and hope that no one shows up behind them to paint over their message. All the paint added to the bridge makes it appear to be about a foot thicker than it is (until the paint cracks, which happens every now and then).

Very early this morning, we added another layer with a message for our wonderful Dean of Admission, Jack Blackburn.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Most transfers should see their status

See the transfer blog for the whole story.

Heads up transfers

If any transfers are reading, keep an eye on the transfer blog today. There might be an exciting announcement for you!

By the way, I am not "Transfermer", the blogger on the transfer admission blog. Transfermer is the expert on these matters. I am not.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Reading tea leaves

One of my favorite Deans used to describe the speculation that happens in admission offices during the month of April as "reading tea leaves". We've made our offers and eagerly wait for responses to see how the first year class will turn out. Every bit of information is scrutinized (some of it seriously, some of it just to pass the time during an anxious month): the number of phone calls received, the size of tours, the daily mail counts (yes, many offices actually count the pieces of mail each day).

This being an odd year for UVa, we're reading the tea leaves quite a bit these days. Today's bit of data: even though most deposits arrive in the few days before and after May 1st, we've processed 1598 deposits as of this morning. There are probably a few that have arrived in the mail that haven't been processed yet, so I'm confident saying that's a solid 1600. The overall sense is that this isn't high or low.

What does this all mean? Not much until May 1st arrives and all the mail is counted.

Hang in there, waitlisted students. We don't know anything about how the waitlist will be used at this time.

Days on The Lawn, vol. 5

Our run of great weather for DOTL is over. We'll be in our rain location, the Newcomb Hall Ballroom, for the start of DOTL this morning. It'll be crowded, but at least we'll all be dry!

Update: The crowd was the biggest we've had for a final DOTL. The last session is usually nice and small. We were really surprised!

I met many nice families and CavDog enjoyed all the pets and praise he received. One funny moment came when a family asked why a dog was at DOTL. At that very instant, a crowd of students appeared and said something along the lines of "Oh my gosh, it's CavDog!!! Are you Dean J?". Perfect timing, all!

I thought the speakers, Larry Sabato and Maryann Li (4th year, Commerce student from Virginia Beach) were some of the best speakers we've had this year. Even though we were packed into the ballroom, I really enjoyed the morning session. CavDog was a little scared of the stage, so he was a little afraid during his portion of the program, but he did most of what we expected him to do!

Hope you all enjoyed your visit!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Days on The Lawn, vol. 3

As usual, DOTL crowds were much smaller on Monday. Typically, people are eager to visit, so they come to the first DOTL they can. It's a bit overwhelming, but it also makes later DOTL events very pleasurable.

CavDog seemed to enjoy the smaller crowd on Monday, too. He wasn't as nervous weaving through the crowd or giving some kisses to people who came by to say hello. Here's a picture that a nice mother sent me:

Those coming to DOTL on Friday can expect some gorgeous weather. We're currently expecting it to hit 80 degrees!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Happy Birthday, Mr. Jefferson!

Jefferson's birthday was absolutely gorgeous! Unfortunately, the weather isn't going to hold for Scholar's Day tomorrow. Be sure to bundle up!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Days on The Lawn, vol. 2

The second Days on The Lawn brought large crowds and gorgeous weather to UVa (it hit 82 degrees yesterday!). Many of you came by to say hello, which made my day! It was so good to finally meet some of the people on the other "end" of this blog.

I hope everyone who attended enjoyed their visit!

CavDog was exhausted by the time he got home from DOTL.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Status pages deactivated starting today

The status pages are being deactivated today. First year applicants will no longer see their decisions posted. This is so we can move forward with the transfer process.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Days on The Lawn, vol. 1

The first Days on The Lawn of the year is in full swing...actually, it's more than half over at this point! The day started off a little wet and the rain site was prepared, but we decided to start the day on The Lawn in accordance with tradition. CavDog greeted guests, walked on marble for the first time (he did not like it), and happily accepted petting and praise from prospective students and their parents, though my sense is that many recognized him and opted not to say hello.

After the morning welcome, everyone was able to visit a specific school presentation and after that, students were sent off to visit classes and parents went to Newcomb Hall, the student union, for special sessions.

Of course, schools from one of the most populous areas of the state are on spring break right now, so our office is literally mobbed with prospective students of all ages, making it a pretty busy day. I hope that those of you who didn't get a chance to ask questions or to say hello with feel free to call to speak with a dean or post a question here.

The next DOTL is Friday...hope to meet a few more of you then! Please be sure to say hello if you see me and CavDog!

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Prospective students are here!

Imagine CavDog's surprise at visiting his favorite dog boutique on the Downtown Mall and being told that a "tourist" was there asking about him earlier! Looks like prospective students and their families are already in Charlottesville. Enjoy yourselves this weekend! See you on Monday!

Friday, April 04, 2008

The people of Peabody

I showed you some of the pets of Peabody and I'd like to tell you a little bit about the people of Peabody. I think that it helps to know the people behind your decisions before you show up for Days on The Lawn (DOTL). When you visit, don't be bashful! Step up and say hello to the admission officers at the morning reception! We know you're probably more interested in talking with students, but hope you'll say hello.

We are five parents (and one grandparent). Two of the parents have children in high school and have probably seen as many info sessions and tours as you have this year. We come from Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Georgia, New Jersey, and Columbia (as in the country). One of us is a former army brat who can't really pick a home state and another grew up in Turkey, Kenya, England, Austria, and Virginia.

Our favorite places to meet prospective students include New York City, Boston, San Diego, Portland, Atlanta, Nashville, San Antonio, Salt Lake City, London, Bangkok, Sarasota, Concord (NH), Bozeman (MT), Stuart (VA), and Abingdon (VA).

We like to hike, golf, rock climb, play tennis and basketball, ride horses, and walk our many dogs.

We eat a lot of ethnic food and have strong opinions about the best places to eat sushi and Mexican food in Charlottesville. You may interpret our passion for coffee, chocolate, and locally made cheese as addiction.

We listen to classic rock, funk, opera, and classical music that was created well before you were born. We throw in some contemporary stuff (mostly rock and country) to keep current, of course. We have worn clothes that you would only consider wearing on Halloween.

Do we seem like a scary bunch? "The Committee on Admission" is made of people who love working with students. Meeting you at Days on The Lawn is the pay off for all the work we do. We can't wait to see you!
CavDog wasn't born in time for DOTL last year...this is from Halloween

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Rodman Scholars Update!

Rodman Scholars Program invitations went in the mail yesterday. I imagine that some of the Virginians might receive them as soon as today or tomorrow.