Guest Blog: Working in Admissions – 7 Quick Lessons

Daniel Gomez-Ortega is a 4th year English student, working as a Student Ambassador in Client Services for Undergraduate Admissions and Recruitment.  

Starting university can be exciting for many reasons, one of them being the possibility for a new job. I’ve had the opportunity to work on campus as part of the Undergraduate Admissions and Recruitment team helping students, parents and visitors with their inquiries about the university and application process. There are many lessons that I have taken away from my last three years in the department, but below are the top 7 which might help you get a better idea of what working at Ryerson is like:

Work-Study is Your “In”

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The Work-Study program is an initiative that allows students in financial need to work in the university, while still keeping their studies as their priorities. Each job available has a unique set of characteristics and tasks that will help you develop skills that will be useful after graduation. The contract itself usually last two semesters, giving you the chance to apply to jobs in different departments during your Ryerson stay. There is a vast variety of jobs available under this program, from working in the President’s Office as an Event Assistance, to working in our pride and joy: the Mattamy Athletic Center.

Don’t Panic!

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International student policies, transcript procedures, and reach-back programs, oh my! Starting work in a department like Undergraduate Admissions and Recruitment at Ryerson can be overwhelming due to the amount of information that there is but there is one thing that I have learned that has saved my sanity: it is okay not to know. It will be impossible to learn everything in your first day, month, or even year ( I have been here for 3!), so the best tool that you have are the questions you ask your more experienced co-workers. Even if they don’t have the answers, they will do the best to point you the right way. In fact, they are happy to lend you a helping hand with any situations you face.

From Me to Team 

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Studying at university can easily become a one-person job, but working at Ryerson will really give you a chance to be part of the Ryerson family. You have the opportunity to learn exactly what it means to be part of Ryerson in every way; whether it is through simply waving “hello” to other workers across your desk, or working with them helping other students every day. Together, as one, we work towards the same goal: giving students, visitors and parents, the best Ryerson experience we possibly can.

The Boss…

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There is a perception that managers in “the real world”  are supposed to be intimidating, inaccessible, and hard to communicate with…working for Undergraduate Admissions and Recruitment thankfully proved this wrong. Managers at Ryerson are not only concerned about your productivity, but also your development and growth as a professional. With your hard work and feedback, they will do everything they can to help you achieve your full potential as they hope that your experience working with them will be one that will give you the tools to use upon your graduation.

Casual Fridays

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On Fridays, we wear jeans.

Every Student Matters

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When I came to Ryerson, I came with the promise that no student at Ryerson is just a number, and this is incredibly true behind the scenes.  Even though we may help upwards of one hundred students every day, we make sure that every student is given the attention they need. Many times we recognize that what the student or visitors need the most is a listening ear, so we truly do our best to listen and help them in any way that we can. Empathy is what can bring many of the student’s experience with our department from good to great, so we put ourselves in the students position to fully determine what the best way to help the student or visitors might be.

Smiles are Contagious

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I have learned that this is what can make the biggest impression with the student or visitor that we assist. When others sense that you are happy to help them, it also makes them happy to be talking to you. Smiling can break down a wall and make the individual feel welcome at our help desk.

Whatever your interest, don’t hesitate to take every opportunity you can at Ryerson with the Work-Study Program!

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