06 Aug Part 1 ‘The Benefits of a College Visit’
The following post is the first in a series that, over the next six weeks, will address the nuts and bolts of planning college visits. Each week will feature a different aspect of college visit planning.
The topics will include setting goals for your trip, how to go about making customized arrangements on campus, how to determine the best travel route, and how to keep track and manage all of the logistics for your college tours. We will also share with you how to help your teen prepare for her time on campus. We hope you will find this information helpful and welcome any feedback you might have.
What are the Benefits of College Visits?
You may think of visiting colleges as merely an opportunity to see the places where your child is considering beginning their adult life, but college visits are much more than that!
These visits can, in fact, have a strong impact on the life path that your teen will choose. Research shows that they are the single most influential aspect of introducing students to college life, and the absolute best way to get a feel for each college that they are interested in. Visiting colleges should be considered a vital part in your childs college selection process.
During these college visits, your child can decide if they would fit in and enjoy an urban college or a rural one. They might also discover during these visits that while they thought they would be happiest in a large school, they actually prefer a small one.
After all, making a decision based on information from a college website and experiencing the campus firsthand are two very different things. The feel of the student and faculty interaction, the dorm facilities, the tastiness of the food and the choices available, and the importance that the university places on your childs favorite sports or activities can all be much better assessed while being present on campus.
There are also peripheral perks to college visits. For example, some admissions officers might take into account interest shown by having visited campus, when making their final acceptance decisions. This truth demonstrates how powerful visits to prospective colleges can be. You may also find that the visits inspire your teen when it comes time for them to write their personal essays. Having been on campus and having gotten a feel for the community can assist in pinpointing aspects of how they could benefit from and be a benefit to the college collective.
Here’s a perk that most people don’t realize until after they return home from a series of college visits: while college tours are not what most of us think of as a typical vacation, it’s a chance for you and your teen to do things together, either one-on-one, or with the whole family. Getting away from the everyday routine and experiencing something out of the ordinary will undoubtedly bring about great conversations and wonderful memories.
Visiting Prospective Colleges is Time Well Spent
No matter how varied the college search and options, it is important to visit as many of the campuses that you child is considering calling home away from home for several years. Even if the campus is close, and they feel as though they already know it because of proximity, they are probably not familiar with it it as a student who would be living and working there. Taking the time to visit prospective colleges is time well spent!
Need Assistance planning a College Visit Road Trip? Please contact us.
Have you read Parts 2, 3, 4 and 5 of our series?