Video fair helps Middle East students learn about Ball State, Indiana universities

Topic: International Education

February 2, 2007

Middle East students who might not otherwise get a chance to see the advantages of attending Ball State or another Indiana university will have an opportunity this month - but without having to leave their countries.

Admissions officials from Ball State and five other Indiana colleges and universities will virtually connect with the students overseas to promote their programs at Destination Indiana's second annual Live Video College Fair Feb. 6 at various Ball State locations.

Ball State is coordinating the project through Destination Indiana and the U.S. Department of State. Each school will virtually connect with EducationUSA advising centers and their students in Tripoli, Libya; Cairo, Egypt; Amman, Jordan; Kuwait City, Kuwait; Dubai, United Arab Emirates; and Muscat, Oman.

"As part of the Destination Indiana consortium, Ball State has really opened doors in countries that in the past had been very difficult to open," said Martin Bennett, director of international services at Ball State. "We enrolled two students last fall as a direct result of last year's fair."

Middle Eastern students will be able to preview six schools in one day, while the universities and colleges benefit by conducting a number of face-to-face interviews with highly motivated and qualified students.

During the fair, the students will be able to ask questions of admission officials during the 40-minute interactive Web sessions with each school. Indiana University, Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis, the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, DePauw University and Valparaiso University will join Ball State at the video fair.

The fair will begin at 6 a.m. and finish at noon. During the event, the participating schools will conduct interviews with prospective students in real-time interactive video format and will present videos, PowerPoint presentations, Web site overviews and question-and-answer sessions.

A separate chat room will also be set up during the event to encourage additional interaction. For students who cannot participate in the fair, streaming video will be archived at their advising centers and at the participating Indiana schools.

Ball State will have at least two international students from the region at the session to answer questions from a student's perspective.

To follow up later, Bennett will visit each participating Middle Eastern center on college recruitment tours within the next 10 months.

For more information, contact Bennett at (765) 285-5422 or mabennett@bsu.edu.

By Kim Jackson

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