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The Admissions Office: College Admissions Process Behind-the-Scenes

Is your family gearing up for the college admissions process? Are you wondering what to expect? Rick Bischoff, vice president of enrollment at Case Western Reserve University, offers a behind-the-scenes peek at how admissions offices do their work. We think you’ll agree it’s an invaluable, 25-minute introduction to the admissions process.


This presentation was part of Your Teen Magazine‘s College Event Cleveland in January 2015. To see all the presentations from the College Event Cleveland, click here.

Advice From The Admissions Offices


My name is Rick Bischoff. I am the vice president of enrollment at Case Western Reserve University. Case Western Reserve is the fourth stop on my admissions career so far. I like to be at a place a little while and get out of town before they realize I don’t know what I’m doing.

I started at my alma mater, Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. It’s a very traditional small liberal arts college. I went to the University of Chicago from there, where I spent seven years. University of Chicago is a big liberal arts college in a bit of a large research university setting. From there I then spent five years in Pasadena, California. I was the director of admissions at CalTech.

Spent five years there, and then my family got the opportunity to move to Cleveland, Ohio, and we may have been the only family in Pasadena who were excited about the move and I have now been here for about five years. And if you don’t know CalTech it is a very small, and even if you think you know small, it’s probably smaller than you think it is, nine hundred undergraduates in an incredibly powerful science and engineering research institution. It was the easiest job in America, entering class at 225 students every year. And now I’m at Case Western Reserve.

What I’ve been asked to talk about in this session is kind of what happens after students submit their applications, you know, what goes on the college side. These days mostly applications are digital, you click submit, and then for students and parents, well often, there’s a great mystery as to what goes on. How many of you have high school seniors who are in the midst of this?

(For the rest of the presentation, please view our attached video)

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