Approximately 1,000 high school students, career changers and residents of all ages attended Brookdale’s Fall Open House on Nov. 9, meeting with faculty and staff from every college division, department and Higher Education Center.
The day began with a keynote address from President Dr. Maureen Murphy, who welcomed the capacity crowd and explained Brookdale’s mission to help students exceed even their wildest expectations.
“Every single one of you here today is thinking about success, whether it is for yourself as a potential student or for a family member or friend,” Murphy said. “At Brookdale, we ask you to reimagine your possibilities. And through the help of our absolutely awesome faculty and staff, you are going to learn about things and achieve things that you never dreamed of.”
Financial Aid Director Stephanie Fitzsimmons and Transfer Resources Director Ann Tickner Jankowski also outlined the various programs, resources, transfer agreements and other services available to Brookdale students, including a recently announced tuition discount at Georgian Court University.
Communications Professor Chad Anderson then encouraged the attendees to enter the Collins Arena and “nerd out” with dozens of like-minded faculty, staff and student representatives.
“I think that everyone in the world is nerdy about something, whether it is filmmaking, biology, creative writing, sports – you name it,” said Anderson, a co-organizer of the Open House. “There is a roomful of people next door who want to talk nerdy stuff about what they love. Don’t be shy. Ask questions. Be excited about this. We are all here today just to talk to you.”
That excitement seemed to carry over to the open house, where faculty and staff reported a buzz of energy and enthusiasm running through the crowd.
“This is the busiest day we’ve had in a while,” said political science Professor Tom Cioppa. “I’m impressed. We’ve seen more people today that we probably have in my last three fall open houses.”
Others, like Director of Workforce Training Dominic Latorraca and Dean of Enrollment Development and Student Affairs Richard Pfeffer, said many attendees seemed more engaged and involved during this year’s event, asking detailed questions at a number of different booths.
Local high school senior Joe McKenna said he came to open house to learn more about Brookdale’s academic programs, specifically video editing, animation and graphic design. After meeting with faculty members and taking a campus tour with his family, McKenna signed up for a private tour of the Brookdale TV studio and the rest of the ATeC building.
“There are several different things that I think I can pursue, and I’m trying to see which one would work best with me,” McKenna said. “I’m pretty excited to see what Brookdale has.”
Check out more photos of the Open House here.