How to Get the Most Out of Your College Visits

As spring blossoms and the lure of outdoor activities entices you, it’s important to seize the opportunity to embark on college visits before summer arrives. These visits allow you to explore campuses and gain crucial insights before making your final decision.

In this article, we’ll delve into the various aspects of college visits, offering tips to help you get the most out of your experience.

Making the Most of Your First Visit

During your initial college visit, it’s essential to prioritize certain activities that shape your understanding of the institution.

Attending an Information Session

Most schools provide informative sessions tailored to prospective students. These sessions cover a range of topics, including academics, campus life, financial aid, and admissions statistics. It’s highly recommended to attend these sessions, as they offer vital information about the college’s offerings.

Exploring the Campus

Following the information session, you’ll typically participate in a campus tour. This immersive experience allows you to gauge the student population and envision yourself as part of the community. When on the tour, ensure you sign in at the admissions office, as it demonstrates your genuine interest in the school. The admissions office often keeps track of the number of visits, which can positively impact your application.

Personalizing Your Visit

To gain a deeper, personalized understanding of the college, consider arranging a meeting with a current student. You can reach out to alumni from your high school attending the college or connect with students who share similar interests. For example, if you’re a tennis or mock trial enthusiast, you can visit the respective team websites and contact officers for a meet-up. By engaging with current students, you’ll obtain valuable insights beyond the official tour and information session.

Enhancing Subsequent Visits

As you progress through the college selection process, subsequent visits provide an opportunity to delve deeper into specific aspects of the institution.

Academic Enthusiasm

During your second or third visit, it’s unnecessary to repeat the information session or tour. Instead, focus on tailor-made experiences. Consider sitting in on a class in your desired department to observe firsthand the academic environment. While you may not participate during the class, it’s advisable to introduce yourself to the professor afterwards. Make a connection by expressing your appreciation for the class and demonstrating your eagerness to contribute to the learning community.

Immersing Yourself in Student Life

To truly understand the vibrant campus culture, engage in activities that provide a glimpse into student life. Attend a theater performance, cheer at a sports game, or participate in a conference or music event. These experiences will help you gauge the kind of extracurricular opportunities available and whether they align with your interests. Many admissions offices can pair you with a campus buddy who can offer guidance and showcase the student experience during your visit.

Overnight Stays

For a comprehensive understanding of campus life, consider scheduling an overnight stay. You can arrange this through the admissions office or with the help of friends or acquaintances at the college. Plan for both weekday and weekend visits, allowing you to witness a typical day in the life of a student. An overnight stay provides valuable insights into the college’s academic rigors, social scene, and overall atmosphere. It’s an excellent opportunity to determine if the college’s nightlife aligns with your preferences.


As you embark on your college visits, remember to enjoy the process and stay open-minded. Embrace the fact that some schools may not resonate with you, and others may capture your heart. By actively participating in information sessions, campus tours, meetings with current students, class observations, and extracurricular experiences, you’ll gather the knowledge and perspective needed to finalize your college list.

Take comprehensive notes throughout your visits, as these will prove invaluable during discussions with your college counselor. Ultimately, college visits offer a unique chance to envision your future and make an informed decision that aligns with your aspirations and goals.

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