Prepare for the Visit
Take a few minutes to learn about all the visit options on the university website and plan your visit accordingly. Depending on the time of year and day of the week, you’ll have different options for information sessions, tours, and class visits. Plan your visit for a day that includes the options you want.
Cornell’s visit options:
Attend an Admissions Information Session
Information sessions can be very helpful in learning more about the university and admissions process. While at the information session(s), jot down your questions and take notes on what you’d like to learn more about. Information sessions can be busy, so if you aren’t able to get your questions answered, ask them throughout the rest of your visit. Also, information sessions often have students there to help guide visitors. This is a great opportunity to have a one-on-one conversation with a current student and get a student perspective on campus life.
Take a Campus Tour
Taking a campus tour will give you the opportunity to learn about the campus and get an initial feel. Take notes about places and things that really pique your interest, then learn more about those places through asking questions and experiencing them for yourself after the tour while you’re walking around campus.
Explore Where You’ll Be Spending Most of Your Time
Once you’ve taken a tour you should have a good general sense of the university, but you may have more questions now that you know more about campus. It’s time to go exploring to find places that may be important to you. Consider the following questions…
Where will I study?
Where will I spend down time?
Where will I live?
What are the closest study spots, dining options, and common areas/community centers to where I’ll live?
Talk to current students and find out where they spend their time. College campuses are generally very accessible, so you’ll be able to walk through community centers, dining areas, and study areas freely. Take advantage of that opportunity to explore.
Observe a Class
If the option is available, consider observing a class that is of interest to you. This will give you a feel for the classroom environment. Be sure to get to the class before it starts so you can introduce yourself to the professor and ask if it is appropriate for you to attend.
Eat the Campus Food
Dining options on college campuses can vary widely. Make sure there are choices readily available that appeal to you. Sit down to eat, relax, and even strike up a conversation with some current students. After all, you want to make sure you enjoy the dining atmosphere at the place you will be calling home for the next four years!
Follow on Social Media
Most colleges use social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat to engage prospective students in different and creative ways. Check out all of these sites to discover parts of the college and student life that you may not have been able to see during your campus visit. It’s also a great way to keep you connected to the college after your campus visit.
Ask All of Your Questions
Last but not least, try to get all of your questions answered before you leave campus. Not all questions can be answered immediately, but ask people to follow up with you. Don’t leave without an email address to send further questions to. This is your opportunity to find information that you can’t get from rankings, statistics, and reading websites. Have fun and enjoy yourself!