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Peter Traver

Maritime Academy in California.

Ben Lombardi, Staff Writer

How important is visiting your college’s campus? The answer you receive will reflect the person you ask. Some students apply to up to twenty schools, making it impractical to visit all of them. If this is the case, then you should think about widening your possibilities.

For many students, visiting a campus can be a make or break moment. Keenan Troddyn ‘16  and Peter Traver ‘16 have both recently committed to their college of choice. Both of them spoke of how they thought they would be going to one college, but when they went to visit they didn’t fall in love like they thought they would.

Troddyn is planning on going to RIT, while Traver plan to go to Maritime Academy located in California. He decided on this college based on the campus. Maritime has many locations, and the one he has always thought he would be going to turned out not to be what he thought, so instead he committed to California State University Maritime Academy.

With this in mind, there is always two sides to an argument. Ryan Walsh ‘16 argues “well, it depends. If you’re the kind of guy that cares about the size of their school and its surroundings, then I would suggest visiting the school’s campus.”

So, does it really matter? They say that attending a college you didn’t visit is like getting married with a blind date. Admission experts say that “for a lot of the high school students and parents [they] meet, the idea of visiting colleges feels more like a homework assignment than it does an adventure.” And that shouldn’t be so! The expert talking through the site College Xpress says that “If you’re not having fun, you’re doing it wrong.”

Not only is your tour a great time to find out more about the life of that college, but it is a perfect time to ask questions that you can’t always get answers to.

Here are some great questions from CollegeXpress that they recommend asking:

  • What kinds of student-faculty research opportunities does XYZ University have?
  • Where are some local spots students go during their free time and on weekends?
  • Do people participate in a variety of activities, groups, and clubs on campus? Or is the social scene dominated by only a few groups?
  • Does XYZ University host any events (festivals, concerts, movies, etc.)?
  • Which academic programs on campus are most popular?
  • What are some popular food services throughout the campus?