With the holidays behind us, this is a great time for juniors to be planning college visits. For some, that will mean a plane trip over spring break, for others it will mean finding a day here or there to visit schools that are closer to home.
People often ask “what should we be looking for on a college campus?”
The answer, of course, depends on the student. Some students, who know for certain what they want to study, will want to meet with a professor or sit in on a particular class. Other students want to meet with an athletic coach or talk to students on the quad or in the dining hall.
If at all possible, try to visit college campuses when school is in session. A Saturday visit during the school year is better than a weekday visit in the summer months, when the campuses are deserted. There is a vibrancy that you see in the flyers announcing upcoming events, booths set up in the dining hall to promote a political or humanitarian cause and students playing Frisbee or juggling on the lawn that you miss during the summer. More than one student has visited a campus in the summer and has loved it, only to re-visit in the fall and subsequently take it completely off the list! And vice-versa, of course!
It is very likely that you will not be able to visit every school before applying, especially if your list includes out-of-state schools. But there are lots of ways to find out more information about a school, including asking me. I am continually visiting colleges, and will be seeing about a dozen of them in the next month or so.
Now that the bulk of the senior applications are in, I’m meeting with juniors to put together tentative college lists, plan upcoming visits, and do college and career surveys. Ideally, the juniors will have fully formed lists by the summer and will be ready to take advantage of my August application workshops. The more that can be done before September, the easier and less stressful the fall will be.
And, from a practical standpoint, the earlier you can get applications submitted, the more likely you are to receive scholarship money. The old adage, that the early bird gets the worm, is doubly true in the world of college scholarships.
Call or email if you are ready to set up an appointment!