BY MacKenzie Rizzo
Sacred Heart University has recently hired a new Executive Director of Undergraduate Admissions, Pamela Pillo. An alumna of Sacred Heart, Pillo formerly served as the Executive Director of Graduate Admissions. As of Oct. 7, 2019, Pillo returned to Sacred Heart to assume the position.
“My goal as the new Executive Director of Undergraduate Admissions is to develop and maintain strong collaborative relationships with key university stakeholders in effort to grow our prospective student pipeline and yield qualified candidates,” said Pillo.
Pillo said her previous leave from her position as Executive Director of Graduate Admissions at Sacred Heart was due to “the opportunity to diversify my experience and serve as the Interim Assistant Dean for the Dolan School of Business at Fairfield University.”
Prior to her nine-month leave from Scared Heart, Pillo had been part of the Office of Graduate Admissions for ten years. She said the reason for her return to Sacred Heart was because of her pride for the school.
“I have a great sense of pride for SHU. I believe in our programs, faculty, staff and coaches and I have great admiration for the leadership team at the university,” said Pillo
Pillo said that there are many similarities between undergraduate and graduate admissions. The major difference between the two are the prospective students and their interests.
“Prospective graduate students are generally focused on obtaining information about a specific degree program, while prospective undergraduate students make their college choice not solely on program of study, but also the campus community, involvement and spirit. Each visitor must be provided with a comprehensive experience,” said Pillo.
“She [Pillo] makes herself very present in the ambassador program since we are the individuals that are in the office during the week giving tours and working events all semester long meeting all the prospective students,” said junior student ambassador, Kelly Doherty.
Doherty said that she feels privileged to work for the admissions office, for it plays a major role in the college decision of prospective students.
“The admissions staff, as well as the student ambassadors, are the first people our prospective students interact with when they step on our campus and the majority of the time that interaction we had with them made an impact and helped them realize they want Sacred Heart to be their home for the next four years,” said Doherty.
Pillo said that she maintains daily communication with prospective students, including prospective student athletes. She also regularly meets with the staff of undergraduate admissions to come up with new ways to build Sacred Heart undergraduate applicant pool.
“Change is very important, especially in an undergraduate admissions office. I personally think hiring a new executive director was a great choice for the university,” said Doherty.
“With hiring a new individual comes new ideas that are implemented which could then help in a variety of ways, potentially attracting even more visitors and even more future students,” said Doherty.
Pillo earned her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration & Sport Management from Sacred Heart in 2007. She has been a part of the Sacred Heart community since her freshman year in 2003.
“I’m so proud to see the growth and development on campus. The university has completely transformed since I was a student between 2003 and 2007. SHU illustrates the meaning of continuous improvement – not just in facilities, but also the development and enhancement of programming, both inside and outside the classroom,” said Pillo.