Are you thinking about college, wondering how to choose the one that’s best for you? Or maybe your parents are pushing you to schedule some college tours to get you acclimated to the atmosphere. Either way, knowing how to make the most of each tour is an essential part of choosing the college that is right for you. It will make starting out the next four years of your life on the right foot easier. Here are some ways we’ve found to be successful during college tours:
1. Get there a little early
Any concerns you have about the college itself or your ability to succeed there should be addressed before you start your tour. Take some time to talk to the people in charge before you go out and see the campus and the world you’ll soon be stepping into. Once you’re out on the tour you may forget some of the main concerns you had before.
2. Bring a pen and a notepad with you
Take notes on the pros and cons of the college, anything that interests you or that could be a potential disqualifier. These notes will come in handy when you are comparing choices for schools when you start applying, or even when you get your acceptance letters.
3. Ask questions
Don’t be afraid to speak up. Your guide is there to answer your questions, whatever they may be. Your questions make better tours for the next group of prospective students. While it may seem rude, don’t hesitate to ask how the school you are touring compares to another school you are interested in. It is important for your guide to explain what makes their school the one you should dream of getting accepted to.
4. Pay attention to everything
I’m sure you know those parts of any tour where you zone out for lack of anything better to do. Don’t! Even things that don’t pertain to your intended major or buildings you may not use, (i.e. the science lab) you should know about. Who knows, you may just end up changing majors and there may be some valuable information you might have missed.
5. Make friends with your tour-mates
It’s always odd going to a school where you have to make all new friends. If you have at least one friend from your tour it won’t be as frightening of a change. Don’t be afraid to speak up. Your tour-mates are probably just as apprehensive as you are. Even if you don’t end up going to that school, making a new friend is hardly ever a bad thing.
6. Don’t forget the contact information
What if you think of a question a few days after your tour? Having the contact information of the offices best suited to help incoming students is a valuable tool. It decreases the time you have to sit on hold, being transferred from one office to another in hopes of someone being able to answer your question.
7. Have Fun
College tours aren’t meant to be a boring experience. They are supposed to be a way for you to get even more excited about choosing the school of your dreams. Just relax and chime into the conversation every now and then. Your tour guide might even have a fun group game for you to play as you go around the campus.
What have we learned?
You are your own best resource toward success. Only you can decide which school is the best option for you. Making the most out of college tours is one of the easiest ways to gain the most information about a school in order to make the best possible decision for your future. Never forget that the best decision for you may not be the best decision for someone else.