Summer college visits

<p>Summer visits are not the best, but some colleges do them better then others. One program that I highly recommend is this one done by Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York. RIT</a> College & Careers Homepage Students stay overnight in a dorm and have two days of workshops focusing on different majors and information about possible careers.</p>

<p>Another good one is Penn State's - Penn</a> State Undergraduate Admissions We did one at the Main campus and the small workshop at the iSchool was excellent.</p>

<p>In general I found that small liberal arts colleges worked better with open houses in the summer then just plain tours. My kids found it impossible to visualize a campus without students and I can't think of any summer visits (not open houses) that resulted in them applying without re-visiting.</p>

<p>What good ones have you been to? Ones to avoid?</p>

<p>Two good summer visits that my S experienced: Johns Hopkins Preview Day and Dartmouth, the latter because the sophomores are on campus.</p>

<p>Caltech has good information sessions and tours during the summer. My son and I visited 3 years ago and we felt very welcomed. Besides giving good info about application process and financial aid, they also had snacks, refreshment, and ice-cream treat.</p>

<p>Tours</a> and Information Sessions - Caltech Caltech Undergraduate Admissions</p>

<p>At many large universities, information sessions and tours go on all year, and there are almost always people on campus, although they may not be the regular students.</p>

<p>Five years ago, my daughter and I toured Cornell on what was probably the only 100 degree day of the summer. I thought my daughter would end up being the only kid in history who would refuse to apply to Cornell because the weather was too hot. But as it turned out, she applied, was accepted, spent four good years there, and graduates in less than a week.</p>

<p>We did a visit specifically for rising seniors at Clarkson University in waaaay upstate NY last summer and it was also hot and sweaty. Perhaps it was the same day Marian! Unfortunately, they were not ready for the heat and there were no water bottles or drinks at the different spots.</p>

<p>Ds1 did a great overnight at Texas A&M called the Summer Honors Invitational Program. A&M , despite being diehard Longhorns fans, shot up the list after the visit. Came down to A&M and the school he ultimately chose.</p>

<p>What about any of these colleges for a summer visit? Would it be worthwhile?</p>


<p>Chicago used to have Friday summer showcases which sounded good; I don't know if they still schedule them. On the other hand, the only day we could get to Northwestern was a Saturday in August and there was no one around (even the bookstore was closed, because it was in the student union); needless to say, that visit was fairly useless, although my daughter and husband had already done an official tour a year earlier.</p>

<p>Is this what you are talking about Kathy? Summer</a> in Chicago | The University of Chicago College Admissions</p>

<p>Yes, Kathiep, I thought that program sounded like a great idea. The schedule didn't work for us, but I can definitely see its value.</p>

<p>In our experience, the two most important aspects of the campus visit were the student tour guide and our daughter's visit to two classes on each campus. At liberal arts colleges, the class visit is not possible in the summer and the tour guides may or may not be students. Class visits are a primary way of experiencing the ACADEMIC culture of a campus: are the students just putting in their time or are they passionate about learning? Is an engaged student a brown-noser or the norm? What rapport do students and professors have? Do the professors know the students' names? Do the students appear to be challenged? Are they enjoying the challenge? Does anyone look bored? Is anyone asleep? texting? My daughter made her decision based on a sense of "fit." The tour guide and the class visits were absolutely decisive. [For parents unfamiliar with the class visit, at one college we arranged the class visits ahead of time based on e-mail correspondence with Admissions; at the other two campuses, Admissions had a print and computer listings of sample classes and we picked ones that featured topics my daughter would be studying and which fit our schedule (one before and one after lunch)].</p>

<p>Sbjdorlo - Even in summer, the urban locations of WUSTL and Vandy should have some activity going on. I'd encourage you to visit Davidson whenever it works out for you - I love Davidson and have tried (in vain) to sell it to all three of our kids - but it's a small college in a small town, and I'd fear that it may seem sleepy in the summer. That would be a shame because Davidson is a beehive of activity in the academic year and one of the real gems nationally among LACs. The student center there is a marvel, serving not only as an activity center of its own but as the hub of a complex that connects the fitness center, the indoor pool, a world-class performance venue and the basketball arena. If you go there during the fall semester, there will be dozens of clusters of students hanging out, talking with faculty, playing a piano, etc. When we visited with D1, I liked it so much that I've stopped there twice on my own to eat during trips down I-77. :)</p>

<p>Vanderbilt offers an all day program in the summer called PreVU. My daughter and I found it useful. WashU also offers special programs in the summer. You can find out about these on their websites.</p>

<p>Anyone know if UMich or Notre Dame would be worth visiting in mid-June?</p>

<p>We visited lots of places in the summer simply because it's hard to schedule every place we wanted to visit during the school year. UMich was one where I thought we got a great sense of the place. It was full of energy--lots of students, visitors and activity.</p>

<p>Thanks, redshoes!</p>

<p>Yes - we visited U Mich last June. My son loved it and is enrolled starting this Fall. They have a good comprehensive tour, great guides and Ann Arbor was a great town to explore in the Summer.</p>

<p>Thanks, gadad and hawkbird. I'll share this with my son. He's just begun doing research at the local univ. but hopefully he'll be able to have a flex schedule so he can travel. Gadad, I had an admissions rep from Davidson call me and I got some pretty good info from her but it would be nice for my son to see the campus. Even in the summer, it probably would give him a feel for some of the things he wants to know.</p>

<p>By far the best college visiting experience we had was at Johns Hopkins for a summer preview day. It featured a panel of faculty, a panel of students, an admissions officer, and a tour led by a student. All took questions. Even though it was 107 degrees outside (the school was prepared with water bottles for us, and cut the tour a bit short), the presentation sold us on the school. Our daughter visited again in the fall and attended classes and stayed in a dorm just to confirm that she wanted to apply ED.</p>

<p>I agree with those who answered "It depends". Our experiences 4 years ago with DD:</p>

<p>URI: Plenty of action on campus as this is a state school with a busy summer session. This is a really pretty, traditional New England-style campus that showed well even though there's a bit of hillclimbing involved and it was extremely hot.</p>

<p>Northeastern: Likewise, a hub of activity. Northeastern's co-op program makes it truly a year-round school so dorms, dining halls, quads and the rest were full of students even the last week of June. </p>

<p>Clark: Small LAC --no one was around! The admissions folk could not have been nicer and gave DD and me a private tour when we showed up too late for the last official tour of the day. But you're seeing chairs stacked on tables in the dining hall, bed frames stacked in dorm hallways, and truly not a soul in sight. Needless to say, did not go over well with DD.</p>

<p>We will be taking DS to one of the special JHU days in July. Glad to hear that it's worth the trip; looking forward!</p>