College decision month: 13 things we learned at an admitted-student event.

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Earlier this week, Mod Squad Pete and I went on an eight-hour door-to-door journey —  for a sandwich and a two-hour event held in DC and five hours in the car.

There had been some discussion in this house about whether the event would be worth the trip, especially since it was on a weeknight.

Here’s what we learned. You tell me: was it worth it?

  1. While we thought we’d completed all financial aid forms, turns out there’s a very good reason we had not received any information back from this college. [There’s one more.]
  2. If Pete chooses this college, he needs to reserve housing by June 18.
  3. If Pete chooses this college, he needs to do some major research on the course calendar, select courses, and be ready to register on June 18.
  4. … for both the Fall and Winter semesters.
  5. If you give Pete a pen and a pad of paper with your college logo, at some point during the presentation he will write, “I want to go home.’
  6. Housing choices vary from shared houses with 17 people to high-rises with hundreds and hundreds.
  7. A very nice admissions officer who answers questions as completely as possible is both a good and a bad thing.
  8. If before the event, you’re sitting at the sandwich shop and Pete says, “I’m really looking forward to this,” he’s talking about the food, not the event.
  9. You are much more likely to ask questions at admitted-student events when it’s a college you think is your senior’s favorite.
  10. That ‘answer all the possible questions’ admissions officer? When she’s surrounded by a scrum of parents and students after the presentation, they will have to wait so long for questions to be answered, that when it gets to be their turn and they’ve asked all the questions they had, they will start making up more questions. Really.
  11. Every admitted-student event brings with it the possibility that this is, or isn’t, the college Pete will choose.
  12. Pete follows the same path he did at admissions info sessions:  always chooses the front row.
  13. One way admitted-student events differ from admissions info sessions, according to Pete: “This feels different. You’re no longer trying to decide if you have a better chance than the next person. We’re all in!”

I see a flipchart with pros and cons in our very near future.

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Filed under Campus Visits, Getting In

7 responses to “College decision month: 13 things we learned at an admitted-student event.

  1. Kim

    Jane, #10 made me laugh out loud! I’m finding that with my daughter, her first impressions from the admissions info sessions are still holding true at the admitted-student sessions. In other words, it’s hard to change that first impression – for good and for bad.

    Love your blog!

    • Thank you very much, Kim! One lovely student asked a series of questions about the possibilities of double majors, providing many different combinations of majors as potential fits. The admissions officer responding to every possible scenario… Then the student started a series of questions about how to go about requesting a deferral. That seemed like a very logical progression, given the multiple double-major combos being considered!

      It’s difficult to judge where Pete is right now (checks watch), but it’s somewhere in the “complete toss-up” range.

  2. Amy Halliday

    Silly me. When I started reading, I thought perhaps they were serving sandwiches at the event.

    • Ha! Imagine how silly I felt after thinking Pete was saying he was looking forward to the college’s event!
      They served great (really great) cookies afterward, which is the only thing that kept Pete there long enough to combat the scrum for answers to our questions.
      Thanks for the comment, Amy.

  3. Pingback: College decision month: Who should attend an Admitted Student event? | Dr. StrangeCollege or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Journey

  4. Pingback: College decision month: how to choose THE college? | Dr. StrangeCollege or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Journey

  5. Pingback: National College Decision Day: Pete’s going to college. | Dr. StrangeCollege or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Journey

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