Today, I am going to be talking about your first and second visit to a college how you should approach each differently. This will help you make your decision to apply to the university, as well as, help you decide where you ultimately want to go!
- This is when you want to get the overall impression of the college. Find out its culture, what the students are passionate about, what types of programs they have, how their campus is ... etc.
- You can do your Admissions Interview at this point if you want. Mostly this is an opportunity for the college to get to know you and for you to get to know the finer aspects of the college and how they apply to you. **It was in my first visit and specifically the interview that I realized I didn't want to apply to a specific university anymore. If I hadn't visited, I wouldn't have known that it wasn't the right fit for me.
- Attend during an Open House or a Junior Visit Day. These days are designed for students new in the search process to get more general information about the university. There are a lot of great presentations to give you an inside look at the university, too.
- This is best during a one-on-one visit, an overnight visit, or during an Accepted Student Day. They can be designed towards your needs and the needs of an accepted student that wants to make their decision. (Check out my post on Overnight Visits here!)
- Insider Tip: If you visit close to May 1st (the National Enrollment Deadline) chances are the university will do anything to make you happy, as long as you give them timely notice to prepare. Use this to your advantage to get to know exactly what you want and need to make your final decision!
- Visit the places that you want to see. Use this one-on-one time to visit the chemistry lab, the video production studio, the squash courts, and the row house across town. If there is a place that is vital to your major, you will want to look at that place at every college in order to compare them when you make your final decision.
- Ask all of your questions on this final visit. You should leave the campus knowing everything you want to know and everything you need to know. Also, if an Admissions Counselor says that they need to ask someone specific about your questions, follow up with them! They know how important it is for you to get answers, so be sure to follow up with them if you haven't heard back in a week to two weeks.
I hope this comparison between your visits helps you, once you get to that stage! For myself, visiting both of the colleges I applied to really solidified exactly why I wanted to apply there. I knew that each university's culture fit my personality, I liked their academic programs, and their campus feel. If it weren't for both of my visits to each university, I wouldn't have known!
enjoy the chase,