Roger as Recruiter
By Paul Steenis '85, Dean of Admission
It's a familiar scene.
"Hi, I'm Roger Taylor, a 1963 graduate of Knox. Do you have any questions you would like to ask an old alum?"
And with a firm handshake, Roger introduces himself to prospective students and their families as they tour the campus. He pops out of his office in Old Main, jovial and up to a little mischief. Some families ask questions, some relate how they have come to learn about Knox, and some just enjoy the chance meeting with this distinguished looking gentleman.
The punch line always follows. "I'm also president of this College."
Throughout the years, Roger has had his first encounter with thousands of students in this fashion. After each interaction, Roger jots down what he has learned from the student: name, hometown, date of visit, academic interest, and an anecdote, on an index card for Denise Bailey, his executive secretary, to file. Weeks, perhaps many months later, Roger pulls out those index cards to write personalized notes on congratulatory letters to those who have gained admission.
Bringing in the class has consistently been a top priority for Roger. He's also made it the #1 common goal among all faculty and staff. He has done this by leading by example, by making his engagement with students an important part of each day -- from that first meeting during a campus visit and continuing through their time as students and into their lives as alumni.
In the speeches he delivers as keynote at Admission Open Houses Roger talks with great verve about what Knox stands for. Vocalizing the present story of Knox through the many anecdotes he has meticulously collected -- by taking the time to witness to and absorb the stories and achievements of our students, faculty, and alumni. Knox College has changed Roger's life. In turn, Roger's kindness and enthusiasm has helped Knox continue to change lives.
Paul Steenis graduated from Knox in 1985 and joined the Admission office shortly after, ultimately becoming vice president for enrollment and dean of admission in 2004.