After a nationwide search in partnership with Napier Executive Search, Isthier Chaudhury will join Swarthmore College as the new director of admissions on June 26. The search committee for the position was led by Vice President and Dean of Admissions Jim Bock '90 and included Pam Borkowski-Valentin (Institutional Research), Varo Duffins (Financial Aid), Paula MacDonald (Human Resources), Taylor Miller (Admissions), and Rachel Semigran (Communications) along with many campus partners who participated in interviews.
Chaudhury has a decade of higher education experience including roles at the University of Rochester in New York and Trinity College in Connecticut, where he currently serves as the senior associate director of admissions and coordinator of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). He has managed operations systems; overseen international recruitment; and hired, trained, and managed staff with great success. Chaudhury has also implemented tools to increase efficiency of application review, including more supportive infrastructure, training, feedback surveys, and data tracking.
Chaudhury is also a global leader in international admissions and outreach, and he currently serves as vice president of diversity, equity, and inclusion for the International Association for College Admission Counseling.
“Throughout his career, Isthier has been an advocate for helping students navigate the barriers to a college education, particularly for individuals from underrepresented communities,” Bock said. “I’m excited to see how his expertise and experience strengthen our recruitment efforts and benefit both the College and future Swarthmore students.”
Chaudhury holds a B.A. in Chinese studies, a B.S. in chemical engineering from the University of Rochester, and an M.S. in materials science and engineering for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
“Being one of the few selective liberal arts colleges with an accredited engineering program, Isthier is uniquely suited for our community,” Bock added.
“I spent many years doing research in labs and learning about nanomaterials, biomedicine, and interfacial science,” Chaudhury said. “At first, it is hard to see the natural trajectory from engineering into admissions, but I bring the same skills I learned from research into my work — curiosity, collaboration, critical analysis, and communication.”
Jim continued, “As director of admissions, Isthier will help guide our response to the challenges facing higher education, including race-conscious admissions, test-optional policies, and the looming demographic decline."
On getting started at Swarthmore, Chaudhury shared, “I am most excited to learn the stories of my colleagues in the Admissions Office, along with the stories of our students and community members across campus. Storytelling is at the heart of how we build student communities. Understanding where our community members have been and where they are now is critical in guiding how we shape Swarthmore’s future classes.”
Outside of work, Chaudhury is an avid chess player, a curious cook, and devoted pet parent to his and wife Catherine’s cat, Cannoli — whom he is excited to take on walks in the Crum Woods.