The call that changed it all

LaDonna, Sarah, and Brad Baldwin

Fall has arrived and as many of us are preparing for the cold weather, several students around the globe are dreaming of making WashU their academic home. At WashU, you are never alone in the admissions process and our family is living proof of how this unique operation initiated by APAP not only assisted our daughter during the application process but has never stopped providing us with resources and comfort as we have entered this unfamiliar territory of undergraduate education.

We will never forget the moment we were introduced to an APAP parent. As we sat in the parking lot of Trader Joe’s debating if we should answer an unfamiliar phone number or continue with our shopping, little did we know that with a one second decision to pick up the phone, our lives would experience a positive change. The parent on the other end was honest and open about their experiences at WashU. The candid conversation captured our attention so much we forgot about our shopping. Every question big or small was answered to the fullest. After we finished the call, we felt as if we just experienced a WashU bear hug. The parent left us with contact information for two other parents we could speak with. We have been volunteers in the educational and sports sectors since our daughter was in preschool. This parent and those she introduced us to recommended that we become further involved, and we had no hesitation.

After the children of the APAP members embraced our daughter as warmly as we were by their parents, we jumped right in to pay the kindness forward. During the first semester for our daughter, we hosted two meet and greets, immersed ourselves in the cheer community, made phone calls, hosted a Summer Send-Off, and helped students find jobs by being a part of the career fair. We pride ourselves in the continuity of the relationships we have formed through the APAP program. We hope to spread the collaboration, empathy, and excitement for WashU that we have experienced.

We would love everyone to be a part of this unique opportunity that was instrumental in our daughter’s college decision. We are proud parents of Sarah, Arts & Sciences Class of 2026, and honored to be a part of the APAP Executive Board.

Brad and LaDonna Baldwin

Chairs of APAP parent members