Confessions of an Out-Of-State Texas Rep

Many of the TACAC members reside in Texas as regional representatives; I do not. I am proud (especially as a native Texan) to have the entire state of Texas as one of my territories, though there are a few quirks that come with not living in or close to your own admissions backyard.

Map Apps are Bae
Even though I spent 18 years of my life living in the Dallas area, I’ve been residing in New York City for my entire adult life, and man, Texas has changed since I left. There are new highways and freeways (how did we ever live without the LBJ TEXpress?!), In-N-Out has infected the Lone Star State, and new secondary schools are opening everywhere!

This is an accurate picture of me driving between high school visits (the ghosts are traffic jams and every bad driver ever):


Bless the Holy Tech Trinity: Waze, Google Maps, Apple Maps. Without them, I’d be a crying heap in my Avis rental on the side of the road.

College Fairs Are a Throwback to High School...Not in a Good Way
As an out-of-state admissions rep, I have to plan my trips back to Texas very meticulously and try to visit every priority school in a short time frame. This means I don’t get the chance to hit every TACRAO fair, and when I do get the chance to fit a college night into my schedule, I feel like the oddball out. TBH, I dread the pre-fair dinners, not because of the food, but because the reps--who have been on the fair circuit together for days or weeks--have created their own admissions squads. So I usually sit alone at some corner of the library, enjoying my boxed Panera sandwich.


I Get Panel-FOMO
My recruitment travel relies heavily on air travel and rentals, and as much as I’d like to, I can’t fly back to Texas without weeks or months of advance notice. I’m disappointed when I’m not able to say yes to Junior College Panels or take part in Case Studies, as many happen during reading season or I receive the invite in too short a time to justify a $500+ Southwest flight for a less than 24 hour trip.


It’s Part of My Recruitment Story
That being said, my admissions spiel is telling students about my own college journey, from Texas to today. I love being able to connect with the students I meet on the road, and to say that I was in their literal seats many years ago. It’s a huge part of why I chose my alma mater and why I now work here, and what brings me joy is finding those select students in whom I see myself. At my visits, there’s almost always the kid who wants something different from Saturday Night Football and Greek letters, who yearns for the big, bad world outside of the Lone Star State. It gives me the feels to be a traveling Texan, in search of future Texan alumni for my institution.



Phoebe Kingsak is an Assistant Director of Admissions for New York University. 

Phoebe Kingsak

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