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Why Shouldn’t All Students Have the Opportunity to Succeed?

I’ve just returned from a Counselor Fly-in to High Point University, which is legendary for its opulent campus. It did not disappoint, as I was treated to accommodations in the on-campus hotel (lobby below), delicious meals (including dinner in the Prime steakhouse, where students learn to dress appropriately, put their phones away, and exercise proper etiquette), and genuine hospitality by the admissions staff, faculty, and employees. I enjoyed the snacks (no minibar charges) in my suite, and the many fountains, firepits, and pools.

We toured and marveled at the cutting-edge facilities for business, the health sciences, media, and both visual and performing arts. After a Q & A with a fabulous student panel (mostly from NJ and NY), a counselor in my group said, “These kids are great! But what about the kids who weren’t such stars in high school, the ones with lower GPA’s? What are they doing?”

Of course, the student panel presented to talk to families and counselors at every college is composed of campus stars. This counselor was skeptical because HPU admits students who may not have been at the top of their classes. But the response from Dr. Kerr Ramsey, Senior Vice President for Undergraduate Admissions, was perfect (I’m paraphrasing here):

“Why shouldn’t the students who had lower GPA’s in high school be given every opportunity to succeed? Maybe they weren’t motivated to challenge themselves then. We provide every student with a student success coach, teach them the life skills they’ll need to be successful in the real world, help them get internships, and watch them blossom.”

High Point’s belief in its students’ ability to succeed impressed me more than all the fancy amenities. Every student, from those in the Learning Excellence program to those who will deliver the news on ABC after graduation, has the potential to flourish. It’s great to see a college with so much faith in its method and its students.


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