Visiting a second time?

<p>For parents who have been through the college selection process with a child, did you do a second visit to any schools before your child made their final decision?</p>

<p>We have visited most of the schools my son is applying to. If he does not get into "the one," and he is accepted to more than one of his other choices, I am wondering if a second visit would be wise...or should we stick with first impressions?</p>

<p>Thanks for any advice from parents who have been through this process, and thoughts from others who are doing it for the first time!</p>

<p>Yes, D visited, before the application process, one of the schools at the top of her list a second time because she was torn between that and another school. It was a diversity weekend with all expenses paid; otherwise, she wouldn't have done a second visit. Our S visited his alma mater after getting accepted because the school hadn't been on our list of places to visit the first time around.</p>

<p>If one of the acceptances comes from a school that your S would like to attend but can't quite remember all the details, a second visit might be in order. Better a visit than making the wrong decision!</p>

<p>Good luck!</p>

<p>Yes!! We visited the two schools D was ultimately deciding between several times, including a mid April "do you think this is it?" visit (even though it was a 6 hour drive). She needed the multiple visits to decide. Considering the $30k plus per year we are paying, these visits were a good investment for us. She is very happy at the school she finally decided on and is doing wonderfully.</p>

<p>Our son attended a few prospective student programs and an admitted student program for one of his top choices close to home. His top choice was farther away. We visited his junior year and then for an admitted students' weekend. That visit clinched the deal.</p>

<p>We never visited any of the schools more than once with either daughter. Too many other things going on.</p>

<p>Between two kids and a total of 16 (I think... It is amazing how quickly I've forgotten once they started college!) applications:</p>

<p>Visited several colleges twice. Once during spring break of junior year, or the following summer/early fall, and again for a sleepover with a team, or an interview, or a special invite, or for an admitted students weekend during late winter early spring of senior year, just to be sure.</p>

<p>Visited the majority of the colleges they applied to once, prior to applying.</p>

<p>Did not visit several colleges at all because they were were far away. A couple of the colleges admitted my son, but the merit/financial aid offers weren't enough, so we didn't bother visiting. A couple turned him down. Had those colleges admitted him with an attractive merit or financial aid package we would have visited before my son made a decision whether or not to attend.</p>

<p>Highly recommend second visits if possible. S had five "contenders" at the end and visits/revisits were crucial. There were differences in the questions asked and attention to detail from the perspective of an admitted student, vs. an applicant. This is so important on so many levels, so if there is uncertainty (and perhaps even if there isn't -- the admitted student events are just plain fun for student and parent, we found) and the resources, do visit again.</p>

<p>Definitely yes. The second time is the time to try and immerse your student in the day-to-days of the school. Eat in the cafeteria. Attend a class. Meet with a department of interest professor. Maybe arrange an overnight. Explore the town (by walking around).</p>

<p>I found that after visiting several schools the first time, the particulars kind of melded together for my kids - they needed the second time to really absorb THAT school and what it has to offer and to really picture themselves LIVING there.</p>

<p>Yes we did. For D she went back for a second visit to her top two schools during Accepted Student days. Before the second visit she was very unsure of which school she wanted to attend. After visiting a second time she decided. Lucky for us both schools were within driving distance</p>

<p>For S1 he visited his top choice school a second time during their Accepted Student day. He was 90% sure that was where he wanted to go, but the second visit made him 100% sure. He is on a sports team, and he wanted a chance to visit with the team again after doing recruiting trips to his other choices</p>

<p>I think the second visits helped both of them to look at the school in more detail, imagining themselves there on a daily basis for 4 years</p>

<p>the most important visits for us were during accepted students weekends. Thats when he got a chance to meet other kids who would be his [ potential] classmates, and got a better overall "feel" for the college.</p>

<p>I would just add that the accepted student weekend can be worthwhile even if you already know you are going to that school. My son met a lot of people and learned about activities he wanted to do.</p>

<p>We visited as many campuses as we could during the selection process, then revisited the top contenders after acceptance. The really hard part was that he applied to 13 schools and was accepted to 13 schools, meaning that culling had to be done to decide which to revisit. He chose 5 to visit the second time, going to accepted students' days and staying overnight. The overnights eliminated 3 immediately (wouldn't have really known without that extra time on campus), and left 2 that were very close up there in his estimation and he struggled with the decision up until the last possible second. The good part was that after two in-depth visits to each campus, he had a pretty good feel for what he was weighing between the two. </p>

<p>He's very happily a sophomore at his small LAC and I think all that effort we put into the search really paid off.</p>

<p>Admitted students days are the best to attend - the tables are turned, the school is now selling you specifically and you are in control. They've decided they want you and have to convince you to want them. They allow overnights, sitting in on classes, meeting with members of the department, etc. It is very productive and I highly recommend it.</p>

<p>DS visited four schools twice, two of them after he was admitted and choosing between those two. Those visits weren't part of an admitted students weekend, however. The late-April visit to the school he eventually went to was the first time I had seen it. I'm so glad I went as I knew it was a great place for him after seeing it for myself.</p>

<p>Another vote for admitted students days. Really helped '10D decide where she wanted to be. Also, for us, the first visits to the finalist schools had been about a year before the admitted students' day. Not only had the memories faded a bit, but one year later DD had different ideas about what was important for her in a college.</p>

<p>Absolutely. We visited a few schools twice, and the school that she is attending about 4 times- just to be sure. She also did an overnight at her top choice.</p>

<p>Some people think accepted students event are too much of a dog and pony show, but both my kids found them useful. They weren't ones to collar people and ask them about their experiences. We found the extended visits, the open houses at departments and the fact that they got lots of undergrads out their talking to the prospies helpful. For the most part I felt the students who present at these things are positive, but honest. </p>

<p>My youngest saw three schools twice, my older son didn't get into any of the schools he had visited before getting accepted except for having seem my alma mater during a reunion, so he had a busy April! But it was the presentations that made the big difference that day. Let's just say Carnegie Mellon tried harder than Harvard. :D</p>

<p>I have heard from other parents that admitted student days while fun doesn't always give a realistic picture ...</p>

<p>I do think a second visit can be pretty important.
When our student was deciding about early apps, a second visit took a long time contender then put it further down the list
...and a second visit put another school vying for the top clearly at the top. </p>

<p>Both visits included "real life" day to day experiences, staying in dorms, eating with students, going to classes etc. It is probably worth a second vist. Your student can arrange a visit and stay with a studnet/attend classes.</p>

<p>Ditto on the multiple visits. We visited 6 of the 8 schools my Ds applied to before he was admitted. Then he revisited the top three choices during admitted student days/weekends. It really helped him know that his choice was the right one. Although the admitted student days are when they are "courting" the prospective students, we really saw how much the schools wanted the students to choose them. Some did a much better job than others. </p>

<p>I will say that I'm very glad my DS spent the night at his top choice. He had some questions about the campus life and spending the night helped him answer his questions. He was able to spend time with current students and ask questions and see the campus from a student's viewpoint.</p>

<p>DS unable to attend accepted student event at his top choice b/c of conflict with a school commitment; fortunately, the school was very accommodating and he went the week before, spent the night in a dorm, and went to class with other kids. I think the visit away from the "sales" of accepted students made a really strong impression (given his dislike of the "sales" at other schools) and having the opportunity to act "as if" he were a real student made all the difference. That said, was first visit since school across the country!</p>