Make the Most of a College Admissions Officer Visit to Your High School

What to do when an Admissions Officer Visits your High School or Town

1. Admission officers travel most of the fall and spring to learn about their region of the country. If they are the regional representative for your area, they will be reading every application from your high school. So, their visits to your school have several purposes. First, admission officers are in sales. They are marketing their college to the students. Next, they are learning about your high school so that they are very knowledgeable about what your school and community offer students. Finally, it is a chance for the students to communicate their interests to the admission officers.

2. View this visit as an opportunity to learn something new about the college. Perhaps the admission officer will provide information that you can use in an essay.

3. Every time that you have contact with a college, make sure that contact is recorded. If the admission officer has informational cards for the attendees, fill one out. If you have already visited the college, still fill out the card. If the college considers demonstrated interest, then your attendance at the information session (which is evidenced by the completed notecard) will record your interest. Do not try to give them your resume. The admission officer is in the middle of a business trip, and your resume is just one more thing for them to organize.

4. Introduce yourself to the admission officer before or after the session. Please feel free to speak about how one of your interests fits with their college. Also feel free to ask a question or two during the presentation, but do not dominate the session. Also, not all questions are considered equal. Ask a question about one of your interests and what the college has to offer in that subject. Please save questions about the cafeteria or dorms for the tour guide.

5. If the information session conflicts with a test or important class, do not worry about missing the information session. Email the admission officer to express your interest and explain your conflict. You are not the first student to have one of these conflicts, and the admission officer will appreciate your dedication to your schoolwork. 

6. Juniors, check with your school to see if you are excused from class to attend these high school visits. If the visit is during a free period, it may be a good chance to start learning about colleges.