Tour in February or wait for Accepted Students Days?

<p>I've applied to 8 schools, though I'm mostly interested in my 4 DC schools (Georgetown, GW, American, UMD) because that's my dream location. Because of this, I'm thinking about spending much of my February vacation looking at these schools again to get a better sense of them. I'm just a little conflicted on it so I'd love some advice:</p>

<p>On one hand, I live in MA and can only fly down to DC a limited amount of times, so I'm wondering if it would be a better idea to wait for the accepted students days at these schools (already got into Georgetown and UMD, and I'm going to Georgetown's weekend in March either way, but this visit would allow me to visit classes there) because those might give me a better sense of the incoming class that I would be a part of.</p>

<p>On the other hand, the accepted students days would require multiple visits since they're not all within the same few days, and going would require me to miss a lot of school in April. I also think this could be the best time for me to visit because I can see and compare all my colleges without missing any school. It could also give me more time in April to potentially visit the colleges outside of DC if I'm still considering them at that point.</p>

<p>I can provide any other information if you need it, but I'd love some advice on whether I should take the February trip or whether it's a better idea for me to wait.
Thanks for sharing any opinions you have! :)</p>

<p>Take the Feb. trip. You may run out of time later, plus visiting on regular days helps you get a more realistic view of the schools.</p>

<p>Thanks toledo, that's what I'm leaning towards right now. Does anyone think I should wait?</p>

<p>Really? You are asking us when you should visit? You are smart enough to get into Georgetown and you can't decide this? I'm sorry....I think this is more about you telling us where you got into school.</p>

<p>You have until May1 to decide. Take the time you need and visit when you want and as often as you want and can afford. At this point its up to you to decide where you WANT to attend. But I really think you've already decided: Georgetown.</p>

<p>Fine. Congrats. Move along.</p>

<p>Wow, you don't have to be so obnoxious about this...I have a limited amount of time and money for visits, so yes, I'm asking for some help prioritizing from people who've been through this before since that's kind of what this site is for. Obviously I want to go to Georgetown, but they give sucky financial aid so I'm trying to consider all my options, which is what makes this so hard because I want to get a sense of all these schools but I can only go visit so many times. Once I have decisions I'll only have a few weeks to decide where I'm spending the next 4 years of my life, so sorry that it's stressing me out and I want advice about how I should go about making this decision, but I think it's perfectly reasonable for me to be confused about this. Normally this site is really great for helping people with their problems but it always gets almost ruined by people like you who criticize people just for asking for help.</p>

<p>No need to be harsh, the OP is likely 17/18 and looking for advice....</p>

<p>If you have the chance to visit all of the schools in one trip in Feb.and that is your best option, go ahead as long as you feel that you will be able to get the information you need from these visits. In general, accepted students day won't tell you a whole lot more than you likely already know (except maybe a more comprehensive tour of the freshman dorms or a student panel or something) so if you can only make a limited number of trips, do it. Remember, any student who applied ED made a choice well before accepted students day so you can at least use the Feb. trip to narrow down your final options.</p>

<p>Before you go, take the time to think about line up what you want to see (to the extent possible) at each school. Some schools can arrange for you to sit in on a class, shadow a student or something. Work hard to make the most of each visit. Also, make sure each school is in session when you visit (some have Presidents weekend off) so you can get a sense of the campus, the students, the overall vibe etc.</p>

<p>Georgetown is a great school, but you have to consider finances as part of the equation as well.</p>

<p>Its not being harsh...its just CC has a long history of kids (who are rightfully proud of their accomplishments) coming on here to start threads about choosing between Harvard and Georgetown (just a rhetorical example). </p>

<p>I fully understand that it is vexing to all students, even at the end of the line when comparing offers, on what to do. We went through it as well many moons ago. And it was quite stressful and brought tears etc. But its part of life and having to learn how to make decisions for yourself as a young adult and living with the consequences.</p>

<p>The original post did not really explain the extent of the financial burden or really even the time constraints. The somewhat defensive response he/she gave to me then included some explanation. So some of this is on their shoulders. </p>

<p>I didnt mean to insult anyone, but I do get very tired of the "help me, I got into Harvard" and dont know what to do, kind of threads. Sigh.</p>

<p>yes, I also know that financial aid is a HUGE factor for MOST students. So the OP should have clearly stated that so we could then be of more assistance and it does not appear as another one of "those threads" we all dread. </p>

<p>Now on the merits, I will say that prestige is a factor for all kids...but they need to really focus on the finances, the programs and the soft factors like geography, weather, travel, homesickness or being too close to home etc.</p>

<p>We can't decide for them and can only share our perspectives and experiences. Glad to do that. </p>

<p>We also need to get a complete picture of what schools have offered. I wish the OP nothing but greatness. :-)</p>

<p>I certainly do not want to get into it with you sovreigndebt, but my view is that I don't have anything positive to add, or if I think the OP is bragging or being lazy, I simply skip the post and move it. It is not up to the OP to justify the reason for his/her question.
By considering alternatives to Georgetown, the OP is paying attention to the prestige v financial issues involved in most college decisions.
I will not re-post on this thread, but wish the OP all the best.</p>

<p>
[quote]
I fully understand that it is vexing to all students, even at the end of the line when comparing offers, on what to do. We went through it as well many moons ago. And it was quite stressful and brought tears etc. But its part of life and having to learn how to make decisions for yourself as a young adult and living with the consequences.

[/quote]

If you think everyone can make all these decisions on their own, why are you on this site? I'm fine if you don't want to help me with this but I don't see what's wrong with my asking for advice.</p>

<p>
[quote]
The original post did not really explain the extent of the financial burden or really even the time constraints. The somewhat defensive response he/she gave to me then included some explanation. So some of this is on their shoulders.

[/quote]

[quote]
I live in MA and can only fly down to DC a limited amount of times

[/quote]

I'm sorry that this wasn't good enough for you but I was just doing my best to explain my way of thinking...</p>

<p>And @happy1, thanks for defending me :) (and thanks for the advice, I've already been working on setting up class visits and shadow programs since I do want to get the most out of this trip as possible)</p>

<p>@soveriegndebt, I'm sorry if I came off as braggy but I really only mentioned getting into Georgetown because I thought it was relevant in my choice of how many times to go down and visit since I've already been invited to an accepted students weekend. I know I'm going to have to make all the final decisions on my own, but this site has been great about giving me feedback that helps me make important college choices, so that was all I was looking for here.</p>

<p>Go in February. Try to schedule overnights if they allow it. We did a driving trip with my son where he visited five colleges and managed to get three over night visits. Also, based on the trip, he knew which he wanted to visit for special scholarship weekends and such.</p>

<p>I would definitely go in February. This is going to be tough decision. The more time you are able to spend in DC, the better.</p>

<p>February - it's more of a real visit. Feb isn't a second choice because you are low in money, but the better choice for a real visit.</p>

<p>@sovereigndebt</p>

<p>This website, CC, was designed for young people (i.e. the OP) to ask those of us who have already been through the process, are in the working world, etc. who have experience for advice on what they should do.</p>

<p>The OP has simply asked a question as to when it would be most constructive to visit given all factors XYZ. </p>

<p>I'm so inclined to say that your post is both unhelpful and unwarranted. If you aren't going to post something constructive and helpful, but rather post something useless and unhelpful, then I would suggest you post nothing at all.</p>

<p>That said, to the OP, I agree with what the majority of other posters here have already told you.</p>

<p>I second NYU2013's comment; this is the place for young people to ask questions about college.</p>

<p>I should add one bit of information as you decide where to visit: sometimes accepted student days can truly be helpful because they are focused on accepted students and can therefore address more topics. At accepted student days, students don't have to sit through any talks about applying to the colleges; everyone has already done that. My D went to an accepted student day for Echols Scholars at U.Va., and got to tour a dorm (not normally allowed) and go to specific seminars. It was much more interesting than a general information session might have been!</p>

<p>Whenever you go, make sure to ask students questions. Hang out where the students have time to talk to you and ask lots of questions - "If you could change something, what would it be?", "How often do you or friends skip class?", or whatever's important to you.</p>

<p>Thanks so much to everyone for your advice! I've decided to go on the February tour and see how things work out when it comes to being available for accepted students days. I'm definitely looking into all my options so I can get the most out of this visit as possible :)</p>

<p>Since there are so many schools, go in Feb. Then if possible go to the admitted students day for your top couple of choices at least. My kid got accepted to several California schools for engineering and fortunately, the admitted students days for most of them were on different weekends. Regular tours were great, but the admitted students day for our final choice was decisive. Our final choice was actually our third or fourth choice prior to admitted students day. However, their admitted students day was so impressive and we got to know the school so well that within two hours the school shot right to the top. We really loved everything that they did and at one point we all looked at each other and knew that THIS was the school.</p>

<p>If you stand a reasonable chance of acceptance, go ahead and visit in February. I would only advise against visiting ahead of time if it's a high reach, since the money would most likely end up wasted.</p>

<p>@Kudryavka</p>

<p>OP already got into Georgetown.........</p>

<p>smwhtslghtlydzed,</p>

<p>My d goes to Georgetown and has had the most fabulous college experience. They have a lovely admitted students weekend the last week of March, and it is well worth going to if possible. & their Financial Aid was fair with us. They were just a couple of thousand less that most other schools, so they were in the ball park. Good luck.</p>