While not as popular as an open house visit or traditional campus tours of the school, overnight college visits give you a better look at the inner workings of a school. One perk is that you will likely stay in the residence halls. You can get a feel for how dorm life works, check out how the internet speed fluctuates (and it will when everyone suddenly remembers that they have homework), and get access to the dining halls. An overnight visit gives you the opportunity to live on campus.
The benefits of staying overnight
Staying overnight gives you more time to generate questions about the school and faculty. You can sit in on classes that interest you, talk to professors and current students, and further explore campus and the surrounding areas. If you have a host student, ask them about their experience so far. What are weekends like? Are there a lot of activities provided by the school? How easy is it to find everything on campus? And so on.
Find out what the school’s policies are
Each college and university will have its own policy concerning overnight visits. Some only allow these visits for students who have been accepted to the school. Others might have specific weekdays during fall and spring semesters. It is important to research what options your prospective school offers and take appropriate action from there. Do you need to sign up for dates in advance? Do you know someone there you would like to stay with?
Remember, the key thing about an overnight stay is that you have more time to work with. You don’t have to cram in a tour, interviews, auditions, a class, etc., in only a few hours. Relax a little. Take notes. Most importantly, have fun.
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