April 1, 2022

The One about Campus Visits

Girl on College Visit

College tours are a wonderful way for students to get a feel for campus life. 

When should I tour a college?

Anytime! It’s never too early to visit a college. Our favorite time is during the fall or spring semester while classes are in session. This allows you to see the typical traffic, crowdedness of campus, talk to students, possibly sit in on a class, etc. The summers and off times often leave campus empty and maintenance is often performed. However, we know the school breaks are more convenient times to travel, so we would rather you go when you can than not at all. 

What should I do to prepare for the tour?
  • – Register for an official tour online
  • Class 101 Cypress Tip: See if the school offers any “add-on” tour options for your specific major/department
  • – Schedule an appointment with the financial aid or admissions office if needed. 
  • – Gather the questions you may have for admissions and/or the financial aid offices. 
  • – Plan your trip. Ask your parents if YOU can pick where you eat, visit, etc. 
  • – Pack comfortable shoes.

Class 101 Cypress Tip: Check the school website for recommendations or visit one of our favorite sites: Daytripper University

What should I do after the official tour BEFORE I leave campus? 

  • – Think about your non-academic college factors and start exploring campus through that lens. 
  • Is food important? Go eat in the cafeteria and seek out your favorite restaurants. 
  • Are dorms important? See if you can get a housing tour. 
  • – Is finding community important? Go check out the clubs or Greek houses. 
  • Is campus safety important? Explore the surrounding areas. 
  • Do you need health services? Visit the health center and inquire about services. 
  • – Is working out important? Visit the fitness center. 
  • – If you are really brave, go talk to students on campus. 
  • – Take pictures to help you remember the trip. 
  • – Take notes right after the tour while it’s fresh on your mind!  Give that feedback to us at your next meeting.  

What if we can’t travel to tour colleges?
  1. Visit schools online! 
  1. Take a local tour of Houston – area schools to get a feel for different college atmospheres.
  • – The University of Houston –  large public school in an urban environment.
  • – Houston Baptist University –  small private university with religious affiliation
  • – Texas Southern University – medium-sized, Historically Black College
  • – Rice University –  private, non-religious affiliated Ivy-like liberal arts college
  • – Texas A&M University – extra-large public university in a college town
  • – University of St. Thomas – small, private Catholic university
    • – The Art Institute of Houston – an arts-focused, for-profit entity

Our favorite virtual option is registering for an official virtual tour on the college website so that you are demonstrating interest in the school. 

Other virtual options:

Did you know?

Most schools give two excused absences per year to 11th and 12th graders for official college visits? You must pick up a form from your counselor or download it from the high school website and have a college official sign it while on tour. Ask us at Class 101 for help locating these forms.

Need additional help? Contact us!

Written by: Kathy Jones

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