There is no better way to find a perfect college fit than to spend some time on a college campus. Campus visits come in many shapes and sizes and most campuses offer variety of options when visiting a school.

The traditional visit typically consists of a tour and a presentation. This is usually a good “first look” at any school. Obviously, if you are traveling substantially long distances, you may want to include sitting in on a class or meeting with a faculty member. During a typical visit, the college will want to highlight important information about their programs, admission policies and show off their beautiful campus.
While figuring out the best academic fit should be first and foremost on your list, finding the right environment doesn’t fall too far behind. When determining the right fit, keep the following in mind:

  1. Distance: How far away from home do you want to be?
  2. Campus size: Do you want a big campus or a small campus?
  3. Location (rural, suburban or urban): What kind of environment do you want surrounding your campus?
  4. Classroom size: This is often overlooked. Would you prefer a small class with 50 students (or less) or a large lecture hall with 500 students?
  5. Climate: Do you have preference regarding the weather? Hoosiers are typically used to any kind of weather, but many students have a preference regarding warm and cold.

Start your college visit right in your high school
Each fall, many colleges travel to meet with prospective students at high schools throughout the country, especially those at private college-prep high schools. This is an easy way for juniors and seniors to get information about specific colleges without ever leaving their own campus.

Regional Information Nights
Many schools host evening or weekend programs in the area to highlight their school. It could be a program for an individual school or a group of schools. These programs can be a great way to get general information about a school, ask questions and show them that you are interested in them. Make sure you are on a schools mailing list so that you receive notification of these visits. Note: not all schools will use “perceived interest” as part of the application review.

Xavier at College Fair
One of the most comprehensive resources is the College Visit Guide by Casey Near. Casey is a Collegewise counselor and the guide can be found here.