Instant Success for NHS Seniors
On November 21, 2019, representatives from 12 colleges and universities came to Nutley High School for Instant Decision Day. Instant Decision Day gives students the opportunity to meet with college admission representatives who hold a short interview with them. Once the student’s application was reviewed, they received an instant admission decision. NHS students came to school dressed professionally, ready for their interviews. Representatives from Bloomfield College, Caldwell College, Eastwick College, Fairleigh Dickinson University, Felician College, Johnson and Wales University, Kean University, New Jersey Institute of Technology, New Jersey City University, Seton Hall University, Stockton University, and William Paterson University visited NHS this day.
Nutley High School has been holding Instant Decision Day for over eight years. This benefits NHS students in all different ways. Mrs. Meredith Gerckens, head of the NHS counseling department, explains, “They are able to do live interviews with college admission representatives so they get to talk to them about the school, ask their questions, practice interview skills, and they get a decision right on the spot.” She believes that live interviews also prepare students for future interviews during or after college.
A representative from FDU says that the students "don’t have to go through a waiting period and they get to have a face to face interaction with an admissions counselor so they can talk through why they want to attend the university, why there are interested in a certain major and things like that.” Not all high schools participate in Instant Decision Day so it was recommended that NHS students took advantage of this opportunity.
Mrs. Gerckens and the rest of the school counseling department offered NHS students lots of help while they prepared for the big day. Counselors waived the fees, coordinated their documents, and met individually with each student that was participating to help them prepare. Mrs. Gerckens explains, “we held an interview skills workshop that was open to all students but specifically instant decision day students so they could practice their live interview skills.” Since this can be a nervous and stressful day for students, the counselors did their best to relieve some of it.
Jayden Tolentino interviewed with William Paterson, Stockton, Seton Hall, and Kean and he explained that he prepared by “looking at the interview questions that the school provided for us and practiced them with my parents and classmates.”
Instant Decision Day began at 9 a.m. and lasted the remainder of the school day. Students filed in and out of the guidance room getting accepted to some of their top schools. A couple days before Instant Decision Day, students received a paper with their interview times, which were spread out throughout their day.
Some students were nervous going into their interviews, but as their interviews went on it got better for them. Alexa McNutly explained, “I was a little nervous, but I was confident in what I was saying.” Raj Paghdal said, “By getting into these schools, it definitely boosted my confidence.” Overall, Instant Decision Day was a success and the guidance room was filled with flags with students that got accepted to each school.