College visits are an important part of choosing where your child is going to spend the next four years. Spring break and summer are the perfect time to be touring the college campus. With my two children, we visited both large and small colleges looking for the right fit.
College visits are time consuming and usually involve additional travel expenses but college itself is expensive. You want to give your children the opportunity to make the college choice that allows them to not only get a great education but to grow as a person.
Here are some quick tips to get you started:
- Take the Official Tour: All college campuses offer a free guided tour. It is a great way to get a feel for the campus. Most of the time you will also see a dorm room. This tour usually has be scheduled in advance through the college’s website.
- Use Your Connections : Do you know anyone who is attending the college? Having a personal tour with a regular student is a great addition to the official college tour.
- Special Days = Special Experience: Some colleges offer special tour days for specific set of students such as Honors Student day, Engineering day, or Liberal Arts day. The special days provide a better understanding of the opportunities available for those students.
- Take Notes: After multiple college visits, you are going to have trouble remembering the details of each college. Make sure to jot down the things that you like in addition to those things that you don’t care for.
- Extracurricular Activities: The classes offered are important but so are the opportunities outside the classroom. What do students do in their free time? Are there clubs that your child would want to join? Part of college is meeting new people and doing new things.
Hopefully the college visits will help make the college decision easier and more fun. Firsthand knowledge of the college will add to excitement of the transition to college life.