Why You Should Visit Colleges Again Before Accepting
Once you’ve received a formal acceptance notice from the colleges you applied to (congratulations, YOU DID IT!), you may want to consider visiting the schools for a second time. Perhaps you feel like you have a pretty clear picture of where you want to go without giving them a second look. That’s great! But, if you can work it into your schedule and finances, another visit would be worthwhile.
Even if you’re certain of your choice and are ready to make a formal enrollment decision, wait! We understand you’re excited—and you should be! In the midst of your celebration, take a step back to consider your options again. Choosing where to spend the next four (or more) years of your life is a big decision that requires as much certainty as you can muster. If you have time before the deadline, you can get an entirely new, fresh perspective when you revisit your top few choices as an accepted student.
Maybe you didn’t get to check everything off your to-do list the first time you went, or maybe you could benefit from deeper research into the campus, classes, surrounding area, etc. Either way, a second visit to each of the colleges you have been accepted to would be helpful. Because you hopefully already have a sense of what each college has to offer, you might want to take some time to truly immerse yourself in each specific college experience. You could visit a class if you haven’t done so, attend a sporting event, meet with a financial aid officer, or sit in a meeting of an extracurricular that you might be interested in.
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Instead of the basics brushed over on a standard guided tour, you can now explore more thoroughly the campus and surrounding area. Allow yourself to compare each environment and determine whether you could truly picture yourself there. This is the campus you will not only live on (or near) and receive your education, but it is also where you’ll make lifelong friends and important career connections. It is important to pick the best fit for you!
Many colleges offer students who have been accepted an “open house” or other special opportunity to dig deeper and learn more details about the school. Feel free to contact each college you are considering and find out if there is a similar scheduled opportunity available to you. You might learn more detailed information about a specific program that interests you or gain insight into which scholarships you may qualify for. Now that you have been accepted, you can focus more on these details without having to worry about whether you even have the opportunity to attend. This will allow you to make more objective observations and take some unpredictable emotion out of the decision.
You may not have time to carve out for a second visit to multiple colleges, and you need not worry if that is the case—just make the best decision you can based on the information you have gathered from the first visit and any subsequent conversations with current students or administration. But if you do have the capabilities, a second visit as an accepted student could provide more clarity or new insight as you decide.
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