Get More Out of Your Tour


Sophomore Brooke Wood visiting OSU

Brooke Wood

Whether you’re a freshman, sophomore, junior or even a senior, it’s never too soon to start thinking about the future. College visits can be very beneficial, but only if you get everything you possibly can out of the visit. Here are four things to do on your college visits to ensure you get more out of your tour!

  1. Ask questions

While you’re on the tour, your guide will be spitting an endless amount of information out at you. This information can often be overwhelming and sometimes even irrelevant, depending on what you’re looking for in the school. Even though they give you loads of information, you will most likely have questions popping up throughout the tour. Ask the questions! If you don’t ask questions, then you might walk away from the tour feeling like it was a waste. It might seem awkward to ask a question in a group where no one else is talking, but it’s very beneficial to get the information you need. Whether it’s asking if microwaves are allowed in the dorm, or what majors they specialize in, no question is bad if it’s helping you better understand the school.

  1. Pay attention to the size

Paying attention to the size of the university you’re visiting is extremely important. When I took my college trip, I visited colleges ranging in size from UCLA (44,947 students) to Lewis and Clark College (2,209). Neither school was the right fit for me, but visiting them made me aware that I like big universities much better than small ones. Knowing the size of the university or college you want to attend is critical when you are choosing where you want to go. Even if you think you know what you want, it is always good to tour colleges of different sizes to see which fit is best for you.

  1. UCLA

    Get a feel for the campus

Knowing 101 facts about the academic successes of the school can only go so far if you plan on attending. The fact that the school is ranked number one for your major might be perfect for you, but if you don’t like the campus then you’ll be in for a long four years. When I toured UCLA, their academics were amazing, but the campus wasn’t for me. When you’re touring the campus, pay attention to the layout, whether it is spread-out or compact. Also, look at what surrounds the campus and your favorite parts about it. After the tour, walk around and explore even more of the campus. Knowing if you like the campus is just as important as liking what the school offers academically.

  1. Have a positive attitude

This might seem cheesy, or even a little obvious, but it’s still very important. My brother was certain that he was going to love Colorado State and not like Oregon State, but it turned out to be the exact opposite. He kept an open mind while he was touring Oregon State, and ended up falling in love. Even if you don’t think you’re going to like a school, keep an open mind and a positive attitude. You never know where you’ll end up, so it’s best to give every school an equal opportunity.

I went on my first college trip the summer before freshman year. Even though I was just entering high school and had four years ahead of me, I gained so much from the experience. My trip was a huge success because I followed these four tips.

College tours are a great way to prepare for the future. Touring college campuses teaches you a lot about yourself and what you look for in a school. Whether it’s your first college visit or your fiftieth, follow these steps to ensure that you get the most out of your tour!