The Truth Behind the College Visit Process

Tucker Dunn, Staff Writer

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Nowadays, the college process for high schoolers begins as early as first semester or second semester of junior year. The above sentence describes exactly what I have done. I have been on two college trips visiting eight colleges in total. I thoroughly believe that it’s great to get a feel of the different schools you’re considering and going on visits is a great way of doing that.

On our four day weekend for Presidents’ Day my parents and I headed west to Ohio. Our first stop was Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. We arrived on Thursday night and stayed the night in Oxford. We woke up Friday and walked to Williams Hall, where the Communications school is located. We met with Dr. Howard Kleiman, who is a professor of Media and Culture at Miami of Ohio. He explained all the different opportunities that are offered in the School of Communications. He also gave us a brief tour of Williams Hall and some of the features including the TV station. I am interested in the sports side of Communications so he referred us to the Sports Leadership and Management program (SLAM). We walked over to Phillips Hall which is where the SLAM program is located. We spoke with a professor there in the SLAM program. One tip for college visits is always walk and don’t drive in a car when you are on campus so you can get the full experience of the college. We then, went to the Farmer School of Business, which is one of the best business schools in the entire country, for an information session. During the information session, my parents and I then realized that getting into the Farmer School might be a little challenging. We absolutely loved the tour because you get the taste of the campus from a student’s point of view because the students are the tour guides. Some of the attractions on the tour were the Goggin Ice Center, the Armstrong Student Center which had rooms for studying and great places to eat, and we also were shown the different dorms at the different residence halls.

Our next stop was at the University of Dayton in Dayton, Ohio, which is where my mom went to college. We did the same thing as we did at Miami: we met with representatives from the Business School and the School of Communications. We also went on a general admissions tour. I was very impressed with the campus. The residence halls were very nice and the rooms were not too small. The classrooms are good sized and are absolutely state of the art. We also did some extra activities. We went to a basketball game at UD Arena, which was a great experience because you get a great sense of the fantastic school spirit at UD. Dayton is a Catholic University and have a beautiful chapel and we went to Sunday mass and it was a good way to experience the faith on campus my absolute favorite part of Dayton was this program called Dayton Enterprise which are student run businesses such as coffee shops and other small stores.

Two months later, my parents and I again embarked on a college trip. This time, we were headed south to the states of Virginia and North Carolina. Our first stop was James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. We met with a professor of Journalism at James Madison. He gave us a tour of the School of Communications including the absolutely beautiful TV station. We then went to the student center and were given a tour of the entire campus. My family and I were blown away by the great views and scenery of the campus. For me, personally I was so impressed by the camaraderie of all the students at JMU.

Our last stop on our southern college trip was to Elon University in Elon, North Carolina. I stepped on campus and I immediately knew that this was home. The campus was beautiful and I could see myself spending 4 years there without a doubt. My first activity of the day was to sit in on a sports management class. I loved the class. It gave me a great sense of what a college class is and what to expect. I suggest sitting in on a class if you get a chance during your college visits. My favorite part of my Elon visit was the tour we were given of the School of Communications. There were so many different opportunities in the school such as the TV station, the radio station, and the audio suites. The campus tour of Elon was absolutely fantastic. The elaborate design of the academic buildings and the residence halls really shows you how much the administration cares about the learning environment. Elon University is absolutely one of the most underrated universities in the United States.