Planning College Visits

For high school students, the academic year is winding down and summer is soon approaching. While some high school juniors may have visited colleges during the spring, others may look to the summer as an ideal time for visits. Some students may even find it convenient to include college visits as part of their summer vacations. Be sure to plan and schedule all activities in advance to get the most out of your visits. The following are a few considerations for college visits:

  • Schedule an appointment with an admissions counselor. Admissions offices may provide informational group sessions or individual meetings.

  • Schedule an official campus tour. Many schools are not available for guided tours on weekends so plan accordingly. Make sure to take notes during the tour or write down your impressions and thoughts soon after the tour. The specifics that you write down now will be helpful when completing college applications in the fall. Take time after the tour to explore other areas of the campus that are of interest to you.

  • If summer session is taking place, try to sit in on a class. Arrangements can typically be made with an admissions counselor.

  • Schedule an applicant interview if you plan to apply to the college in the fall. While not all schools require interviews, it’s generally recommended to participate if interviews are offered.

  • Schedule an appointment with a financial aid counselor if you’re concerned about the cost of attendance. Meeting with financial aid can inform you of options for merit and need-based aid. Bring a copy of your resume along!

  • Schedule an overnight stay in a dorm. See one of our previous blog posts regarding overnight stays: 5 Reasons You Should Stay Overnight on Campus.

  • Talk with students who attend the college to get their perspective. According to The Princeton Review, “Come prepared with some questions to ask--specific ones will get you more interesting (and helpful) answers.”

If time, distance, and finances are factors inhibiting college visits, consider utilizing online resources to learn more about colleges on your preliminary list. Virtual online tours can be found on the individual college websites or at

Do you have questions about college visits? Contact Hughes College Prep to discuss visiting and applying to colleges.

Chenoa Harrington