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A parent embraces her daughter and kisses her on the check during new student orientation at Knox in September 2019

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Knox Signs “Care Counts” Statement, Affirming Importance of Service in Admission and Financial Aid Decisions

A parent embraces her daughter and kisses her on the check during new student orientation at Knox in September 2019

Knox College is among more than 315 colleges to sign the collective statement “Care Counts in Crisis: College Admissions Deans Respond to COVID-19” affirming what colleges value in student applicants during this time of unprecedented challenges and uncertainty. Among the values outlined in the statement are self-care, balance, meaningful learning, and care for others, along with a commitment to equity. Paul Steenis, vice president for enrollment and dean of admission, signed on behalf of the College. 

“We recognize that this has been an especially challenging year with students and their families experiencing many uncertainties,” said Steenis. “The values described in the ‘Care Counts’ document align with Knox’s mission of access, and we especially appreciate the focus of the statement on encouraging students to take care of themselves and others around them and on serving their communities during these unusual times.”

The statement recognizes the stresses that students are experiencing and encourages them to be gentle with themselves. It encourages admission offices to base their assessment of a student’s academic achievements on their performance before and after the pandemic. Service, often highly regarded by admission counselors, is defined as especially authentic and meaningful in these times, with a special focus on substantial service to one’s own family, such as supervising younger siblings, caring for sick relatives, or working to provide family income. 

“We want our current and prospective students to know that we understand the unprecedented challenges that they are facing,” said Steenis, “and that we are committed to help them achieve success, both while they are at Knox and as Knox graduates. To that end, we are allocating funds for additional financial aid to make Knox more affordable to families who have suffered economic setbacks as a result of COVID-19.”

The Care Counts statement was created by the Making Caring Common Project at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education. Read the complete statement.

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Printed on Sunday, September 20, 2020