Summer College Campus Tours: 5 Things to Remember
If another word for summer seems to be “campus tours,” you aren’t alone!
This is a convenient time for many families to head out and visit potential colleges in person. My College Guide has tips to help you prepare for your campus tours.
Preparing for a Campus Tour
Although the campus isn’t hopping like usual, it’s a good opportunity to see the college in person. Swarming with students or not, you can still get a feel for a college and gauge whether it’s a good fit for you.
My College Guide has a few ideas to help keep you on track and focused on the task ahead: figuring out where you would be happy spending the next four years of college!
Don’t let the fancy extras fool you. Sure, the new football stadium looks great and yes, that new classroom wing is impressive, but what about the rest of campus? What about buildings and classrooms you’ll use for your intended major? Are they kept up and modern or lacking a certain something?
Rather than jumping in the car and going, make sure you call ahead to request a campus tour. Three weeks before when you want to visit is a good rule of thumb. Some schools set up group informational tours while others like to give students more personalized tours that focus on their intended college major. Either way, they want to know in advance that you are visiting, so make sure to plan ahead!
Narrow Your List
If you have twenty colleges you want to visit, we suggest paring down that list! Instead, focus on colleges that have a handful of college majors that interest you. It’s common to switch majors. If you always participated in theater in high school, make sure that the college theater lives up to your standards. The same goes for any extracurricular activities that were really important to you. Even if it doesn’t relate to your major, that doesn’t mean that you can’t be involved! Just make sure that your potential future school has the things that matter to you.
Are there a few colleges you’re considering and you know you’ll get into? Financial aid packages aside, you can always visit the college campus again during the school year. In fact, that way you’ll have a chance to see the college in action! How do students interact? Do people seem content? How’s the cafeteria? Those are questions that may be easier to figure out in the Fall.
After seeing a few college campuses, they all start to run together! Keep a small notebook in which you can jot down what you saw, what you liked, and what you didn’t like about each school you visited. Make sure you give yourself enough information to jog your memory later. Then, when college admissions time rolls around, you will have a handy way to remember which schools you were really into and see if you need to make a second visit.
Choosing a College
There’s a lot to remember while you are choosing a college. Just know that you can always go back and check a school out again later if you need to.
And relax! This is the fun part! Try to enjoy the experience.