From the Admissions Desk: Think smaller. Listen more. Plan for now.

Nora Meah, Director of Admissions

This blog is the first of several for the parents, guardians and educators that we speak with every day. We know you are listening to the recent high school graduates in your lives. They have questions and concerns unique to this time in their life and unique to this time in our national history. We are listening to all of you. Each day we hear stories of what is next, how to plan, and what choices make the most sense now. Making big decisions may feel overwhelming. Thinking small may be just right!

The conversation exploring options for young people during these vigilant times is an important one. As post-secondary admissions professionals we know firsthand the travails families experience making smart investments for the future. For some, the path is clear, but the finances are challenging. For others, the path is unknown and resources are unstable. And for others yet, factors well beyond our control make any long-term decision difficult.

At IYRS, we see the big shift families and young people are experiencing. We are feeling it too, making adjustments, and making decisions with the best information we have on hand now. For instance, IYRS, a non-profit post-secondary school on the harbor in Newport, Rhode Island, closed campus on March 16, 2020 for the safety of our community. On June 8, 2020 we are thrilled to welcome our students back to campus to complete their academic year in the Boatbuilding & Restoration certificate program. We couldn’t be happier unless all of our students from the Spring 2020 term were returning, too. 

Spring 2020 shifted the focus from celebration to loss. Hope for the future to concern. Cancellations began surfacing in early March when spring sports season and SATs were cancelled. Then it was extracurriculars, community service, and - finally - school. Then it was graduation. Seniors are especially worried. 

Our team heard these worries and adjusted. We have admitted high school seniors by using a letter of attestation in place of waiting for official transcripts. Plus, IYRS has never required standardized test scores for admission. In communicating with educators and guidance counselors we know they are working from home, have limited access to their offices and voicemail and need to prioritize their seniors who are finalizing plans. 

In an unprecedented and uncertain moment, we see so many of you trying your hardest to do what is best. Exploring new post-secondary plans with the young people in your life may be far easier than persuading them to make a big life decision. Considering a small school with lightweight admissions processes, lower costs and a shorter commitment that yields in-demand technical skills could be the way to go. 

Interested in the topic? Join us for an event or connect for an informational call anytime to learn more.