Life for prospective college students is anything but easy right now, especially if you dream of attending an out-of-state college.
It’s more difficult than ever to get a grasp of the school you want to attend without college visits.
If you still have time to plan future college visits before you need to make a final decision, take the time to learn how to prepare for an out-of-state college visit as you and your family plan for the college road trip.
Aim for an Overnight
If you’re going a far distance to visit a college, you’ll need to stay the night before going home. Make the experience a time to remember by organizing an overnight stay on the college campus.
Consult with the college of choice to organize the overnight stay far ahead of time. If the college doesn’t offer overnight visits, or only offers overnight visits on dates that don’t fit into your schedule, you can still give yourself a similar experience by staying in a nearby hotel.
Make a Trip Out of the Visit
Make an authentic mini-vacation out of your out-of-state college visit! Learn everything there is to know about the campus and the surrounding area by planning visits to local hotspots and landmarks.
You may even take the opportunity to visit multiple colleges on one long family road trip. If you do visit multiple campuses, try to pick one to spend two days at.
When planning the vacation, make sure to make all the usual vacation preparations. Ensure your family finds a pet sitter or boarding service for your family dog, put your mail on hold, and unplug all non-essential electronics. Get the car road-trip-ready by checking the tires and oil, and don’t forget to bring something to entertain you during the ride.
Keep in Contact With the College
The college you want to visit may have its own procedure for prospective students and visit days. Plan ahead for your visit by looking at their available visit days or sending an email to the admissions office. There may be benefits to visiting the college outside of getting to see the campus, such as waiving an application fee or gaining the ability to apply without an essay.
Bring a Backpack
During a campus visit, the college will load you up with plenty of documents, information pamphlets, and school-branded gear. You may also need to take notes of the campus’s pros and cons to help you make a final college decision.
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Make it easy on yourself by bringing your usual school backpack and loading it with a notebook, pens, and folders. The school may supply you with a bag, but it may get heavy after a while.
The most important thing to remember when piecing together how to prepare for an out-of-state college visit is to have fun. Do your best to picture yourself on campus, walking to and from classes and meeting new friends.
Wherever you go will offer you a unique and exciting experience, so avoid getting too picky with your decision.
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