What should you do before visiting a college?
- Begin thinking about what type of college or university you might be interested in. Do you prefer a large school or a small school? Would you prefer to go to a 2 year or 4 year institution? Do an internet search for the type of school you are interested in. Also, go to www.collegeboard.com and check out their "Find a College" section to determine what colleges match your preferences.
- Create a list of colleges you are interested in to discuss with your high school counselor and your family.
- Make a comparison chart that lists the cost, entrance requirements, available majors, location, etc. of each of the colleges you are interested.
- Narrow your list down to three or four schools you would like to visit and schedule a time to take a tour of each campus. Most college campus visits can be scheduled online.
- If you will be missing school in order to tour a college, be sure to stop by the Counseling Center prior to your visit to pick up a College Visit Verification Form so that your absence can be excused as a college visit.
- Prepare a list of questions to ask while on your college visit and have the High School Counseling Center print off a copy of your transcript to take with you.
- Finally, get a notebook to carry with you during your campus visits. You will want to jot down notes so that you don’t forget the different information you learn from each school.
What should you do during a college visit?
- Take a campus tour and check out the school facilities. Leave yourself enough time to get a good feel of the campus.
- Speak with an admissions advisor about admission requirements, fees, deadline, etc.
- Speak with a professor in your field of interest or major. Be sure to ask questions regarding the program of study and to take a tour of the department.
- Stop by the financial aid office to speak with a counselor regarding the cost of attending the school, types of payment plans available, scholarships, work opportunities, etc.
- If possible, speak with current students. Ask them why they chose the school and what they like and dislike about it. Find out what students do on the weekends and what internships and jobs are available to students.
- Sit in on a class of a subject that interests you.
- Spend a night in a freshmen dorm. Check out the facilities including the bathrooms, laundry room, common area, etc. How new are the facilities? How many students use each facility on average? Also, be sure to check out the bulletin boards. Do they tell you anything about student life?
- Eat in the dining hall and ask about meal plans.
- Grab a copy of the student newspaper and campus map as well as any applications, programs of study for your major or other useful information you see.
- Walk or drive around the community surrounding the campus. Get a good sense of what it is like and what living in that community would be like.
- Bring a camera. It will help you remember all of the details of your visit that will make it easier to decide on a college later on.
- Click here for a College Vist Checklist to take with you on each visit.
What should you do after visiting a college?
- Write down your reactions to each college.
- Be sure to discuss your notes and reactions to each school with your parents and/or school counselor.
- For those schools you are definitely interested in, be sure to complete an admissions application as soon as possible and have the High School Counseling Center send each school a copy of your transcript.
- If you met with a professor during your visit, be sure to send him/her a thank you note.