Visiting college campuses is vital for the college decision-making process. If I had not visited Fairfield, I might not be here today. Although virtual tours seem convenient, they do not give you the overall feel for the school and do not provide a personal experience. There is no way to interact with the students and faculty at the school. Also, virtual tours usually do not encompass the entire campus, which could make you believe that a campus is smaller than it is in reality. By visiting campuses, students can make their decision through their own perspective, rather than through the perspective of a computer.

Since I applied to 17 colleges, my decision-making process on where I would spend the next four years of my life was chaotic. The Common Application became my best friend, and I was so unsure of what I wanted in a school. Should I go to a big school or a small school? Do I want to be close to home or get some distance? There were so many questions that required careful consideration. By visiting college campuses, I was able to answer these questions. If I had not visited campuses to determine where I would feel most comfortable, my college decision-making would have been more difficult and could have inclined me to attend the wrong college.

After visiting Providence College, I fell in love with the campus and it became my dream school. This led me to apply early action. Finally, I received a decision. I had been deferred. Although a deferral is not a rejection, I was heartbroken by this answer. Sitting next to my deferral was a letter from Fairfield saying that I had been accepted. The deferral made me feel unwelcomed which caused me to give other schools, like Fairfield, an opportunity. The first thing that my parents and I did was plan a visit to Fairfield. I recall it being a gross, rainy day, which didn’t do the campus justice. However, I still loved the school. I remember a student saying to me that if I liked the campus on a bad day, then my decision should be easy. By walking around the campus, I could imagine myself attending in the fall and picture myself fitting in at Fairfield. Furthermore, my visits to Fairfield were a major factor in my decision to attend the school.

In addition to Fairfield, I visited the University of Rhode Island. Since I had attended small schools my whole life, I thought that a bigger school would be a good change for me. When I visited URI though, I was terrified. The school was huge and I started to imagine how I would get lost on my way around campus and how I would be just another face in the classroom. This made me realize that a big college was not for me. Although I ultimately decided not to attend URI, I was glad that I visited the school. If I had not visited, I could have made the mistake of attending there in the fall. Also, I was able to compare URI to Fairfield and that made me realize Fairfield’s strengths that ultimately factored into me choosing to come here. The smaller campus and overall layout of the school proved to be more convenient than URI. Maps and virtual tours can only provide a glimpse into the structure of a campus and can cause people to misjudge the proximity of certain buildings on campus. Additionally, virtual tours cannot compare to the experience of visiting a real college campus, which is ultimately one of the most important deciding factors during the decision-making process.

About The Author

-- Editor-in-Chief Emeritus-- English: Journalism/Creative Writing

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