Revealing the many paths

College recruiters show students why their college is best


Kaitlyn Rogers

At the college fair, Senior Autumn Golden speaks with a college recruiter. The event garnered many students and college recruiters to discuss future endeavors.

Story by Grey Johnson, culture editor

One of the most important decisions a high school student can make is what they’re going to do after high school. Some decide to go to college but don’t know which one is best. That’s where college recruiters come in. At the college fair held in the Dan Haskins student center, many college recruiters from the Texas area made an appearance to talk to students.

“[For] most of us, this is our full-time job – to come out, come to schools and talk to students,” said Kristen Cash, University of Texas at Dallas college recruiter. “It’s done differently at lots of different institutions, but at least at UT Dallas about 70 percent of my job is recruiting, and then 30 percent is actually doing admissions and walking through how to get to UT Dallas and actually doing admits with students.”

Many schools in Texas participate by organizing college fairs. Recruiters who visit these fairs travel in groups and go from school to school to represent their colleges.

This is something that I find very rewarding when it comes time, working with students, pointing them in the right direction.

— Jerry Peralta

“We’re all split up into territories and basically this is a big season for all of us, it’s [when] TACRAO and most schools in Texas participate,” Cash said. “Basically, we just travel in little groups for a full week. So, like right now, this is the East Texas week and also the Gulf Coast week.”

TACRAO, Texas Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, was founded in 1916 to help promote and contribute to higher education, and accomplished this by advancing the work and positions in functions with higher education. TACRAO organizes college fairs all over Texas similar to the one held annually at Texas High.

“So this is TACRAO, and this is a little bit different than how we normally do recruiting. During this three months span, we all go out to these certain areas of the state, but normally we all have our own territory,” Cash said. “My territory is Dallas county and kind of a southern swoop from East Texas to Waco. It is my responsibility to go out to my 153 different schools throughout the year and visit them and communicate with them. So that’s our means of recruiting and chatting with students; it’s really building relationships with people.”

The main season for TACRAO’s college fairs has just ended. Their fairs start around when fall starts, and ends around two months later. Within this time span are separate week sessions for different locations in Texas.

“TACRAO is just the season that starts mid-September and this is the last week, the second week of November,” Cash said. “For TACRO, I’ve done Coastal bend, I’ve done Fort Worth, Dallas, El Paso and now East Texas. So, I’ve done five different TACRO weeks. It’s usually three fairs a day for five days a week.”

There are many ways to approach the job of a recruiter, whether it be strictly a job for income, or to put the recruiter in the position to talk to students about things they didn’t have when they were high school. The latter describes Jerry Peralta who represents Texas A&M.

“I went to Texas A&M from 2003 to 2007 and this is something that goes along with my major,” Peralta said.  “This is something that I find very rewarding when it comes time, working with students, pointing them in the right direction, telling them about opportunities, showing them opportunities and all the things I wish I had back in the day, today.”