How to Make the Most of College Campus Visits

Are you planning to spend your spring break making college campus visits? Spring of junior year is a good time to check out the campuses on your short list, especially if you are considering applying for early decision. To avoid wasting time and money visiting every school on your list, do your homework first. Narrow your list to include the schools that fit your budget, offer programs you are interested in and offer a realistic chance of acceptance.

Once you arrive on campus, make the most of your time there. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you’re visiting college campuses:

  • Check the college’s calendar to make sure school will be in session at the time of your visit. You can only get a true sense of a school if you visit while everyone is on campus.
  • Take notes and photos! If you visit a number of college campuses, you’ll soon have trouble remembering which one had the best food and which had the nicest dorms.
  • Find out when tours are scheduled and ask whether you have to sign up in advance. Bring a list of questions to ask the tour guide.
  • Eat at the dining hall and check out the dorms. Spend time with other students to get a sense of the school’s culture.
  • Schedule an interview with an admissions officer. Note that the admissions offices are often quite busy in April, so call well in advance of your visit.
  • Make an appointment with a financial aid officer. You’ll learn what your options are at each specific school so you can make an educated choice at application time.
  • If you’re interested in joining a club or sport, arrange to attend a meeting or practice.
  • Visit a class in your major. While one class can’t define the whole college, it is important to get a sense of the size and makeup of the classes you expect to enroll in.

It’s helpful to take a checklist along on your visit, so you don’t forget anything, and an extra set of eyes is always helpful. While some students might think it is fun to visit on their own, a parent is likely to notice things a student might not pick up on and ask questions students might not think of. Contact us to learn more about making the most of your campus visits.

Photo Credit: NCinDC

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