When weighing your college options this spring, one of the most effective ways to decide which school to attend is to pay them a visit. It may have been several months, or even a year, since you last visited any colleges. Visiting again will help refresh your memory, perceptions, and feelings about the schools you applied to.
With that in mind, you’ve probably received some invitations to events for admitted students this spring, which are a great way to spend some time on campus and learn more about a school. If you’re considering any admitted student events, here are some things you can expect.
Lots of Admitted Students – It might sound obvious, but one of the best reasons to go to an admitted student event is to meet other admitted students! If you’re going to college for four years, you’ll be spending a lot of time with your peers, in the library, the dormitory, the classroom, and the dining hall. Going to an admitted student event will give you a sense of who your future classmates might be and how you get along.
Panels – Colleges may schedule panels throughout the day on different topics such as academic advising, athletics, study abroad, and pre-professions. Current students will talk about their experiences, faculty and administrators will talk about their departments or responsibilities, and you’ll be able to ask questions about things that matter to you.
Tours – In addition to traditional campus tours, which you’ve probably been on before, colleges might also offer specialized tours to give you a fuller perspective on life at the college. These might include tours of the dormitories, science laboratories, art studios, athletic facilities, or even the neighborhood around campus.
Class Visits – You may be looking forward to sitting in on a class during your visit. This is a great way to experience the academic environment, see how class is conducted, or get a taste of a major you’re considering. However, it’s important to keep in mind that most colleges have dozens, or even hundreds of classes every semester. The one class you observe is not necessarily going to be representative of every classroom.
Overnight Visit – At many colleges, current students will host admitted students in their dorm rooms for the night. Hanging out in the dormitory with current students after all of the official events are over is one of the best ways to get a feel for the life of the college and how students spend their time.
If you have the time, we strongly recommend visiting colleges as an admitted student. Just remember, admitted student events are usually high energy and exciting, but also tightly scheduled and constructed. In order to get a more balanced perspective, try to make some time to do something off the official schedule, and talk to a student who is not a tour guide or admissions representative.