- Jill Madenberg
COVID-19 Related College Closures: Addressing the Impact on High School Seniors*
*Featured in the April 2020 NACAC Official Blog:
"Adjusting to a New Normal: Advice from NACAC Members"
Admitted prospective students hoping to visit colleges this spring should check the website or call each admission office before heading to campus. As of today, on-campus activities for prospective students have been canceled at many institutions. If you have a few college acceptances under your belt and now can't visit campuses, there are things you can do to make an informed decision.
Read about each college and narrow your list down to three or fewer options:
Every college made your list for a good reason. No need to follow up and explore every college you got into if you were admitted into every one on your list. By reading (in a reliable book or website) about each college, toss out the ones that don't make sense for you right now. Perhaps you thought traveling across the country was fine when you applied, but now, in the midst of COVID-19, you prefer to be closer to home?
Talk to current students:
If you know anyone who attends any of the colleges you were admitted to, see if they would be willing to talk with you about their experiences. Speaking to several students is great, upperclassmen even better. Juniors and Seniors tend to know the lay of the land and are often willing to share the good, the bad, and the ugly about their school.
Take a virtual tour:
Not the same thing as an in-person tour but at least gives you a sense of the physical space. Also note that while many colleges have canceled tours, some campuses are still technically open. So, if you can travel to campus safely, you can give yourself a self-guided tour and maybe even talk to current students and professors if available.
Email your regional Admissions Counselor:
Ask if someone in Admissions can talk with you and answer questions. (Prepare a list of questions not easily identified on the website.) Remember, now that you have been accepted, the shoe is on the other foot. Don't be afraid to ask 'silly' questions. An admissions officer will not rescind an offer because you asked intangible questions. Once a college accepts you, they really, really want you to come, so ask away!
Send an email:
Reach out to a few professors in your intended major. Maybe you'll get lucky and connect with someone who is willing to Skype with you about the academic opportunities.
Work remotely with a CEP IEC:
Hiring a Certified Educational Planner who is an Independent Educational Consultant and visits colleges regularly will be able to help you narrow your list and choose the best fit for you.