Vice President for Enrollment and Dean of Admissions Cornell LeSane discussed Allegheny’s admission statistics with Allegheny Student Government during its meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 17. With the inclusion of the Class of 2021, students from countries such as Pakistan, China and Ethiopia as well as students from every state except North Dakota are now represented at Allegheny, according to LeSane.
“We certainly have great representation from that standpoint. Good representation as we think about not just domestic diversity but global diversity,” LeSane said. “We’ve also received the most applications in the history of the college.”
This year, Allegheny was ranked the sixth most innovative liberal arts school in the nation, according to LeSane.
“Think about the juxtaposition of that,” LeSane said. “We are the sixth most innovative liberal arts school in the nation, yet we’re the 32nd oldest college in the nation, so what I like about that is we’re an institution that is not saying we’re going to stand back and live off of past accomplishments.”
Allegheny chose to offer test-optional applications over the past year so students can decide whether or not their SAT and ACT test scores are a true reflection of their ability, according to LeSane.
“This is how we’re telling students they’re more than just a test score,” LeSane said. “There’s certainly a lot more appreciation from families in that way.”
In addition to going test-optional, Allegheny has also been looking for students who may not have performed well in high school, but who are willing to work hard to prove they can raise their level of achievement, according to LeSane.
“We have the ability to find not only the diamonds, but also the diamonds in the rough,” LeSane said. “I enjoy saying yes more than I enjoy saying no, so I am truly enjoying this experience. We are finding students who have a love of learning and recognize that, yeah, you’re going to have to work hard here.”
Allegheny has also welcomed a substantial amount of first-generation college students, with 29 percent of the first-year class falling into that category, according to LeSane. He explained using the right approach was the key to finding first-generation students interested in Allegheny.
“When we approach it from the standpoint of saying we’re going to go test optional, it opens up to a whole new branch of students,” LeSane said. “We’re trying to take pressure away from students rather than add to it.”
LeSane finished his presentation by expressing his love for Allegheny and appreciation for the amount of work students do at the college.
“It is a true pleasure working here, and I very much have enjoyed working with the students,” LeSane said. “I think you guys do a great job, and I also understand you work really hard, which is okay because I think once you graduate, it shows. When I look at résumés from Allegheny … I’ve been really impressed from what I see from Allegheny grads.”
Following LeSane’s presentation, Seth Henriquez, ’20, and James Callahan, ’20, explained the wrestling club they are attempting to organize. Currently, there are about 15 students interested in the club, according to Callahan.
“We’re pretty much just trying to bring wrestling back to the school. We know it used to be an official sport … and we’d like to see it be something on campus again,” Henriquez said. “We want to try to get the culture back and have people know there’s a wrestling club before we start reaching out.”
The constitution was approved in the first round of voting. There will be a second round of voting next week. However, senators are less concerned about any potential problems with the club for the second round of voting. Instead, the next round focuses more on the people who have organized the club, according to Class of 2020 President Jason Ferrante.
“The major reason why we send clubs through two weeks of approval is that it gives them time to make any amendments to their constitution that came up in the first week,” Ferrante said.
At the meeting’s end, Class of 2020 Senator Elyse Cinquino was voted from her position as class vice-president to director of communications and press, a cabinet position left vacant by Medha Nag, ’20. In her new position, Cinquino will be responsible for ASG’s social media and website, as well as communicating events with the rest of campus. A few of her goals include bringing back an ASG biweekly newsletter which ran last year and bringing updates to ASG’s website, according to Cinquino.
“I think it’s going to be a nice way to get more involved with ASG and sit on cabinet,” Cinquino said. “I also really like the position because [Public Relations] is fun, and I think that it will be a good way to bring back things that were done in the past that people really liked and continue on things that people liked before.”
Carlos Sanchez, ’20, is moving into position of class vice-president, leaving a position open in the Class of 2020 senate. ASG will be taking applications for a new senator until Wednesday, Oct. 25 at 7 p.m. The new senator will be chosen Oct. 31 and will serve as a Public Relations committee member. A link to the application has been sent to every student through the MyAllegheny email service.