Friday, November 7, 2008
Benedictine College Visit
Thankfully our time in KS was MUCH better than the journey getting here. We were chauffeured to the campus. Madeleine was dropped off with Tabi (a freshman who is a friend of a friend's daughter) and I was dropped off at the Abbey guest house. Madeleine and I both dumped our stuff and then met at the cafeteria for dinner. It was hopping but students were very friendly as was the staff that let me in for free despite not having a free meal ticket. After dinner, Tabi and two friends took us on a nighttime campus tour. They showed us Memorial (freshman female dorm) complete with chapel in basement, the Abbey Church (as well as the chapels in the basement), the library (complete with some great study cubbies) and Lookout Point overlooking the river. Then the girls went off to do their thing and I had a quiet evening at the Abbey.
Friday morning was not my favorite weather - it was cold, dreary and windy (reminded me of Garmisch in the winter when it wasn't snowing). I ate breakfast at the cafeteria after getting a white mocha latte at Holy Grounds (Madeleine slept in eating a poptart and ice tea - she's already a true college student). We started our day at the Admissions Office; everyone there was bright bubbly and friendly. Annica, our tour guide, was fabulous; she really knew about her school and campus. She did more than point out the locations of buildings; she talked about the mission and focus of the school. While I don't care for the stairs and hills of the campus, it does keep many of the students from gaining the freshman fifteen.
Then it was time for Madeleine to go to class; I went back to my room to read my book. She sat in on Ed 220 Psychoeducational Development [Basic introduction to the psychological foundations of education with a focus on the major issues of child and adolescent development, learning theories including constructivism, and the importance of self-concept and mental health to the professional helper. Units on multicultural education, students of diversity, and assessment in K–12 schools are included.]. Madeleine said that the professor was interesting, the students were prepared for class and participated (something we had not seen at another college) and she enjoyed the lecture.
We then headed to the cafeteria for lunch where there were a number of meatless options - veggieburgers, grilled cheese, soup, salad, omelets made to order. We sat with our tour guide and another student. We enjoyed our lunch conversation learning more about Benedictine. I was also able to meet Emily - daughter of my dear online friend Carrie.
From there it was off to meet with a professor - same one that had taught the class earlier in the day. Turns out he's not just a professor but also the head of the Ed Dept. Benedictine has an exemplary rating (I think that's the right word) from NACTE.
Then we met with JP - the admissions counselor for the south. He gave us information about the scholarship competition. There were 200 participants last year; 10 scholarships are awarded (five 100% tuition, five 75% tuition). Many students meet their roommates there as well. The competition is an hour essay and 20-30 minute interview with two faculty members. Madeleine wants to give it a shot; if we get her plane ticket in advance it shouldn't cost too much.
Then we were able to see the other freshman female dorm. It's newer (which means it costs a few $100 more per semester) but doesn't have a chapel. Each girl has a 6 drawer dresser (instead of 3) but not a walk-in closet. The room doors close automatically so not as many girls leave their doors open to encourage community.
Then we got our chauffeured ride to the Radisson near the airport and Madeleine is trying to figure out how to convince her father that it's the best school for her.
(I have a great pic of the tallest point on campus that I'll post after I get home)