LIFE Ambassadors Programs Allows Prospective Students
to Take a Look Inside Feinberg Experiences
|Feinberg’s Look Inside Feinberg Experiences (LIFE) Ambassadors Program uses social media to connect prospective students with current students who share similarities ranging from home region and faith to sexual orientation and race and ethnicity.|
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine recently launched a social media driven initiative to connect prospective students with a diverse group of current students who share similarities such as age, personal interests, career goals, or religious beliefs. Developed by the Office of Admissions and the Office of Diversity, the Look Inside Feinberg Experiences (LIFE) Ambassadors Program allows prospects to engage with students who are like them by viewing their profiles and asking them questions via Facebook, Twitter, or e-mail.
“We’ve seen changes in the way prospective students want to interact and responded by integrating contemporary media into our communication,” says Annalisa David, special projects coordinator in admissions. “These connections will aid prospective students in their decision to apply and ultimately decide if Feinberg is the right fit for their medical education.”
|Samantha Coffino, a third-year medical student, serves as a LIFE Ambassador — talking with prospects about her experiences as a married, non-traditional student.|
Thirty-six students from four classes and varying backgrounds serve as LIFE Ambassadors. Their profiles feature information ranging from home region and faith to sexual orientation and race and ethnicity, as well as links to their preferred method of communication.
“Our student body is very diverse as evidenced by the entering class profile. There is a richness and breadth that is difficult to appreciate unless you’re on campus,” says Sunny Gibson, MSW, director of the diversity office. “It was really encouraging to see that so many of our students were interested in sharing a behind-the-scenes look with prospective students.”
One of those students, Samantha Coffino, 27, a third-year, joined the program as an ambassador to offer prospects guidance to questions she had prior to becoming a non-traditional applicant: Were any of her future classmates also married? Had anyone else taken a few years off before starting medical school?
“I wanted to know how these people adjusted to becoming a student again,” Coffino says. “I was also curious about how they handled a long distance relationship, or how they dealt with having their significant other move to a different city just for them.”
Now Coffino serves as a point of contact for students with these important questions, giving them someone to talk to about the transition.
“Students like Samantha truly offer prospects a sneak peek inside Feinberg experiences,” Gibson says. “Who better to answer these questions than our current students, who are truly the experts?”