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Want a successful campus visit?
Do Your Homework and Count to Ten!

campus map - finding your way during a campus visit
Get acquainted with
the campus layout
before you head out...

You pack for a weekend away and take off to visit a prospective college with your soon to be graduating senior.

You and the pre-freshman that you've nurtured through the SATs and admissions essays are juggling stress.

The college that you and your child pick will change your lives. If it's far, there will be dorming. If it's too difficult - or easy - your new freshman will be bored or discourged. You have the stress of having your child moving away from the nest, the stress of deciding on a good school, the stress of deciding how to pay for it all.

The teenager by your side is putting a tentative toe into the icy waters of adulthood. The stress of leaving mom and dad is not much easier than it was at eight when the bus for summer camp pulled up. Everyone expected the eight year old to have a hard time leaving home for two weeks.

Why doesn't anyone expect the 18 year old to be terrified of leaving home forever?

This is the biggest decision yet in a young life. HIgh School seniors sincerely believe that the college they choose will make all the difference in their success in life. Flunk this one and your whole life is ruined!

College visits rank as a crucial factor in a prospective student's college choice, says Mary Beth Kurilko, Temple's campus visit coordinator, but many families arrive on campus with misguided expectations. With the stress level already high this can make the visit a nightmare for you and your child - and leave a negative feeling about the school.

“You should know exactly what's included in the campus tour before you come” ...

“You should know exactly what's included in the tour before you come,” says Kurilko, who will see approximately 4,500 students tour Temple's Main Campus each summer.

Preparation is the easiest way to ensure a successful visit, says Kurilko. If your football star is expecting to meet with the coach or your young journalist aspires to see the campus newspaper crew in action... work it out before you leave home.

Kurilko explains “Many people come with the expectation that they'll get to see everything, but certain things need to be prearranged -- especially on a large campus. You can't just assume that you'll get there and be able to meet with a biology professor, for instance.” The more pre-planning goes into the event, the easier the transition will be.

Kurilko also suggests that parents and students explore the campus independently for less partial feedback. Stop in at the campus coffee shop for a break and to absorb the atmosphere. She suggests, “If you have the time, walk around campus on your own. Talk to a student about the university to see what he or she likes and dislikes.”

Kurilko dislikes guidebooks that advise parents to ask preset questions that may have little relevance to them. “The worst question to ask is, ‘How do you compare to other schools?'” she says. “You need to do that research, because an admissions person will always bring that back to the school they represent.”

Preparing before you go and remembering just how hard this is for your nearly grownup child will go a long way towards making the trip fun for everyone. You'll know the choice of was college a sound and adult decisions based on the merits of the school... or the color of the dorm rooms and not on the tense time you had there.

Source: Temple University (Newswise)


More tips on choosing a college around the Web:


8 Tips for a Successful College Visit

Princeton Review - Get the Most Out of Your College Visit

 

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