Why Visit Colleges in High School?
A key part of deciding which college to go to is finding a good fit. And a great way to get more information is to visit the colleges in person.
Of course, visiting colleges may not be possible for everyone, but it’s a good idea to make the trips, if you can. It can help you determine whether a college is the right place for you.
Get a Firsthand View
A campus visit is your opportunity to get a firsthand view of a college. A college catalog, brochure or website can only show you so much. To really get a feel for the college, you need to walk around the quad, sit in on a class and visit the dorms.
Get Answers to Your Questions
A visit also gives you the chance to talk to students, faculty, and financial aid and admission officers. You can get answers to important questions, including:
- What is the average class size and the student-to-faculty ratio? Are most classes taught by professors or by teaching assistants?
- What is the campus meal plan like? How is the food? What are the options?
- What is the makeup of the current freshman class? Is the campus fairly diverse?
- What’s the social scene like? What kinds of activities are available?
- Is there plenty of dorm space or is there a housing crunch?
- How many students are commuters and how many are campus residents?Use this a check list to remind yourself of everything you want to do once you get to campus.
Your family members can also participate in the visit and any information sessions. They can help you think through your decision about which colleges to apply to, and ultimately, which college to attend.
Get Valuable Information
Pick up any official college material you see, such as brochures and financial aid forms. Don’t forget to get business cards, too, so you’ll have a real, live contact if you have a question about admission or financial aid.
Student newspapers and activity calendars give you a sense of what campus life is really like. Check out bulletin boards to see what bands are coming to the campus, what parties are advertised, what internships are posted and generally what the day-to-day energy of the place is.
Get Ready to Decide
Ultimately, it’s your decision. Listen to your gut. Do you feel comfortable walking around campus? Do you feel at home? Do you click with the students and faculty? Is this what you imagined college to be like? Spending time on a campus helps you determine whether a college is a good fit.
(Information provided by BigFuture)