Recruitment and Transition

Bates is increasing efforts to recruit the kinds of students — from underrepresented minorities and members of the white majority — who are prepared to take up the dual challenges of intellectual achievement and learning through diversity and who will be able to embrace a campus culture which places diversity at its core.

Multicultural recruitment

In 2006, Bates hired an experienced director of multicultural recruitment, Marylyn Scott, to provide leadership and expertise on multicultural enrollment, working closely with the admissions and financial aid staff, and other College staff, faculty, students, families, and alumni, as well as an extensive network of secondary schools, agencies and organizations. The first focus has been on ALANA students: from African American, Latino/a, Asian American, and Native American backgrounds.

In the first year of this initiative, the College saw significant increases in U.S. students from underrepresented minority groups, international students and first-generation-to-college students. New students had residences in 39 states and 30 foreign countries, from Bangladesh to Zimbabwe.

Class of 2010 Class of 2011 Percent increase
U.S. students from underrepresented minority groups 10% 17% 70%
First-generation-to- college students 8% 10% 25%
International students 5% 6% 20%

Prologue to Bates

Prologue to Bates is a three-day program held twice each fall to which qualified seniors from underrepresented groups and their parents are invited to come to Bates to explore the opportunities the College has to offer.

The program offers participants opportunities to sit in on classes, attend presentations on such topics as life at Bates and studying in the liberal arts, and join faculty, students, and staff members in special dinners and other social events.

Transition support

Once students from underrepresented minority groups are on campus, Bates is working to increase student success, retention, and graduation.

The first of two deans — with shared responsibilities in admissions and student life — is mentoring and supporting a class from admission through the transition to Bates and into the critical first year.

The current focus of this initiative is on students of color, first-generation college bound students, and rural Maine residents. When both deans are in place, they will be rotating their positions annually.