Admissions department gets new Director
Abby Epstein – Contributor
20 years of engaging with students, 12 days of engaging with Southern students. Nilvio Perez has been named the new admissions director.
“I know a lot of people that work here at Southern and a lot of alums who speak highly of the institution, of their experiences and I felt that I would like to be a part of that. That was one of the main reasons I applied,” said Perez.
Perez wants to learn from the students about ways to make the application process easier for them. He also wants to bring students in to see the renovations, all the academics available and make it affordable as possible for students.
“One of the things I am going to try to do is attract students from outside the region to come visit the campus,” said Perez. “Kind of have that entire experience students are looking for available for them.”
According to the press release sent out, Perez came from Central Connecticut State University (CCSU) where he was Associate Director of Recruitment and Admissions. He also worked at Albertus Magnus for 11 years, five of which were as director, so Perez is familiar with the New Haven area.
“I believe it’s the most vibrant college town this state has to offer, so being around college students having that energy in a city was something I wanted,” said Perez.
It did help during the hiring phase that Perez already worked in one of the Connecticut Schools and was familiar with New Haven. There were quite a few more boxes that had to be checked off to even be looked at for the position.
“We had a list of criteria that we asked for which included a master’s degree and certain number of years of experience and that narrowed the pool further,” said Colleen Bielitz, associate vice president.
The hiring pool was further narrowed down to eight and each had a virtual interview. The top four were brought to campus.
“It was a competitive pool with the finalists but what stood out with Nilvio is he had this broad range of experience,” said Bielitz. “He’s also very dynamic and knew about every question that was thrown his way.”
What he achieved at CCSU and Albertus Magnus were one of the differences which made Perez stand out from other candidates.
“He put in place different recruiting techniques that increased the number of applicants and enrollment at Central, so when he presented some of the ideas, he had done to capture a larger audience, it was like it would be great if he could bring those here and implement those other practices here as well,” said Bielitz.
Working at CCSU has helped with making the transition to Southern easier. Central uses the same systems Southern does so the training Perez has had to go through has not been at all difficult.
“Right now, I think I’m just learning, kinda of been understanding what the cultural is here,” said Perez, “so I do plan on going to student government association meetings, sporting events and if it’s open for theatre and music.”
Perez is big on getting feedback from students and understanding what students want. From the press release, Perez likes to get involved within the school; he has been the advisor for student clubs and organizations, he has participated in campus programs and supports the arts, athletics and more.
“Some of those things that students are doing and talking to students to get a real sense of why they choose Southern, why they stayed at Southern, and knowing why Southern is special to them,” said Perez, “will help me in my role as I am trying to get students to consider Southern.”