It's that season ladies and gents. Touring different college campuses is terrifying. Whether it is with your overly excited parents, or a school group, you are on your own. Choosing a college can be stressful but exhilarating, mostly because it's the picture of yourself sitting in the bland beige chairs in the packed library, or eating the dining hall food. I'm here to tell you that the choice is all yours. Do not let just your friends, family, or location convince you to attend whatever school you're touring in this moment. Take all of that into consideration when you're choosing your next home.
While touring a school, there are some aspects you need to pay attention to. Obviously pay attention to the tour guide, but also to the people casually walking by. Look at the way they look, the look on their faces, and the people around them too. I saw so many people who just looked angry, or neutral when I was touring different colleges. And no, it wasn't RBF. I even sat in a Chipotle line and asked the sophomore behind me if she was happy there, and she aggressively shook her head no and said she wished she paid attention to the spirit of students around her while touring. Luckily, the school I chose is huge on team spirit, and we all seem to have the southern hospitality that you see on TV shows. Find a school where people will say "hi" no matter who you are, because that is where you will thrive socially the most.
The campus has to be home, whether you're commuting or not. If you don't feel comfortable walking/driving around, then it most likely it is not for you. I was so anxious touring every school, walking into every building, because I just was overwhelmed. Find out what you are comfortable with and what you're not regarding class size, school size and campus size. My school is a walkable, medium sized campus, with a lot of fountains and palm trees. I liked the scenic aspect of my school, especially because I am a few miles away from the beach.
This is your decision. Your family may want you to go to their college, or a college around you. If you have this opportunity to branch out, do it, because you will never regret it. There is always the back up of transferring or withdrawing to find yourself. There is no shame in doing that because these are the years meant for you. Take advantage of it, and make it the vision you have always wanted!
- Find Colleges - Campus Visits: Before You Go ›
- Smart College Visit - The Educated Way to Visit Campus ›
- College Campus Visit Guide - Campus Tours and Checklists ›
- College Visits ›
- Get the Most Out of Your College Visits | The Princeton Review ›
- 10 Tips for an Effective College Visit | Best Colleges | US News ›