Fletcher Features

Admitted Students Explore Fletcher at April Open House

If you thought you spotted a few new faces around campus this week, you weren’t mistaken. The Fletcher School welcomed over 150 admitted students from around the globe Sunday and Monday for a two-day open house. 

Monday featured a full day of programming, starting with breakfast and a welcome session. Individual degree program sessions ranging from MALD and MIB to LLM, MA and PhD were offered throughout the morning to give admitted students a glimpse of each program’s highlights. Both faculty and student representatives were on hand at each session to give a range of perspectives.

Admitted student Emily Feldman was excited by the caliber of faculty she encountered during the open house. “I’ve been impressed by the diversity and accomplishments of professors and how they’re so willing to help students succeed,” she said.  

There was a little bit of something for everybody at the event. If you wanted financial aid information, there were walk-in hours; if housing was a priority, there were sessions for that, too. Lunchtime discussions with faculty and student groups provided the perfect informal setting for accepted students to talk through their most pressing questions, and there were even roundtable discussions and campus tours.

The Office of Career Services (OCS) hosted two panels that gave students a glimpse of the various services available to them, such as employer info sessions, career courses and networking trips. “Networking is key, and we are constantly looking for ways to get you in front of employers,” Director of Career Services Elana Givens shared. 

Fletcher students also get to take advantage of one other key resource, Givens said. “One of the most valuable resources we have here is the Fletcher alumni. They will go above and beyond to help you, and there’s a culture of paying it forward,” she said. 

It’s this sense of community that admitted student Emma Friedheim is most excited about: “Community has been the number one marketing pitch, but I’m also very convinced of it by everyone that I’ve talked to. I work at the State Department and there are a million Fletcher alums and they won’t stop gushing about the school.” 

Guests got a firsthand glimpse of the Fletcher experience during two panels hosted by current students. First-year MALD Molly Haragan said she hoped the welcoming atmosphere at Open House made as much of an impact on admitted students as it had on her when she attended. 
“Attending the Fletcher Open House was what ultimately sold me on Fletcher. I vividly remember the high energy and level of excitement that filled the Hall of Flags. Current students as well as faculty and staff were so helpful and eager to share their Fletcher experience with me,” Haragan said. “Surprisingly, this was something that I did not experience at any other school visits. The connections with Fletcher students during the Open House made a world of difference to me, and that’s precisely why I want to give back to the prospective incoming class.”

Fellow panelist Rafael Loss echoed Haragan’s statement. “Talking to current students and professors was essential in my own decision-making when it came to deciding between grad schools. Between the final two — Fletcher and a peer school — it was the genuine enthusiasm that students at Fletcher talked about their school with. From Fletcher's programs, to community, to location, all seemed to excite people.”

Student panelists fielded questions about housing opportunities, cross-registration, academics and more. They emphasized the strong sense of community at Fletcher, revealing that rather than compete with each other, Fletcher students are incredibly supportive. “There are multiple people who are interested in the same internships as I am for the summer and we all email back and forth to share listings. It’s important to emphasize how not in competition we are with each other,” Mitch Leestma explained. 

Having community support on a day like Open House is crucial according to, Liz Wagoner, Associate Director of the Office of Admissions & Financial Aid.  “We are a big family here, and community is at the forefront of what makes us who we are,” she said.  “I appreciate how everyone helps with the day, and everyone is invested in ensuring we have a successful event. Our students, administrators and faculty are amazing. It’s wonderful to see the community in action!”