Office of Admission Senior Interns and Ambassadors: Meet the Students Behind Colgate’s First Impression

When prospective students are touring and applying to Colgate University, first impressions are paramount. That’s why student interns in the Office of Admission hold such a coveted role on campus: they are often the first point of contact and the first face they see upon arrival. Student employment within the Office of Admission primarily includes Ambassadors who lead about three hour-long tours a week for prospective students and their guests. However, students can serve as a senior intern in the Office of Admission in their final year, which allows them to work more with the administrative side of the Office, which includes reading student applications, participating in student recruitment operations, and helping to tailor the on-campus experiences of visiting and prospective students. 

Senior Office of Admission intern Natalie Ringel initially decided to work there because of how much she’s enjoyed her time as a Colgate student.

“I have had such a positive experience at Colgate,” Ringel said. “I wanted [to find] a way to share my love of the school with others. Working at the [Office of Admission] seemed like a great way to get involved on campus, and help give prospective students an honest, authentic and transparent look at Colgate to see if it is the right for them!”

For any students interested in becoming Ambassadors, the application can be found in the student employment section of the student portal or by reaching out to the Office via email. According to senior tour guide Peter Barry, the short-answer application questions are designed to find the most dedicated and enthusiastic students possible.

“[The application] has very broad questions,” Barry explained. “So, only the people who really want to do it are going to put their best foot forward and try to write a lot and talk about why they want to be there. It weeds out people who are just doing it for the sake of money or whatever and finds the people that are really passionate about the school.”

Once an application is submitted, student applicants are invited to an interview so the Office of Admission staff can see how they would fit in with the rest of the office. If offered the job, employees undergo a short training process, shadow a few tours given by a more seasoned guide and then can become full-fledged Ambassadors. 

Though many on-campus jobs can be time-consuming and demanding for students with full class schedules, senior Office of Admission intern Kelsey Beausoleil explained that she has no trouble staying on top of her work. 

“[The job is] super manageable,” Beausoleil said. “When I’m at the desk, I can do my homework and still complete other projects. It’s very balanced and my bosses are also so open. They will ask me if I’m sitting at the desk, ‘oh, do you have time for a project to help me out or are you working on something?’ They know it’s tough at Colgate.”

Barry also expressed his admiration for not only the full-time staff at the Office, but also the general atmosphere while working. 

“I really enjoy working there — it’s a great group of people,” Barry said. “The professionals, or the people that work there full time, are awesome. They’re all super nice, super helpful and great people. I look forward to working and hanging out and talking to the people and catching up and then giving tours.”

Beausoleil described deriving a similar enjoyment from her experience working as a senior intern. 

“Every single time when I end a tour and we get back into [James B. Colgate Hall], I’m just in the best mood from talking to students,” Beausoleil said. “They’re so excited about Colgate, and I’m so excited to talk about Colgate. It really just completely turns around my mood being able to speak with them.”

Ringel also said she believes that she has gained valuable life and career skills from serving in her position.

“I have learned how to talk to and connect with a variety of people,” Ringel explained. “You meet a ton of new people every day on the job so working in the office has definitely helped me to feel comfortable speaking with anyone I meet. The job also involves a lot of public speaking, so I now feel more confident in my ability to address and guide large groups.”