Choosing a college or university can be a tough decision and one that will dictate how the next years of your life will play out. College fairs are a great place to search for schools and ask admissions counselors tough questions about their institutions. Because of the limited amount of time, and the fact that there are probably hundreds of other students looking to talk to the same counselor, here are a few questions that’ll get the most useful information out of your few minutes of conversation.
What’s the student-to-faculty ratio?
By asking this question, you already learn a few key things about the school. The first being the amount of time and dedication your professors will have to enhance and further your learning experience; the smaller the ratio, the more hands-on you will be with your faculty. Additionally, it shows you the value the University places on your relationship with your professors.
How new are the facilities?
Ask this question and you’ll be able to gauge the school’s budget and the amount they’re willing to invest into your education.
What is the culture like?
From here, you’ll be able to find out what type of extracurricular activities are available and the amount of value placed on life experience outside of rigorous academics. You should also be able to find out what the best living option is, on or off campus, as well as get an understanding of the surrounding city or area.
What are the most popular majors/programs?
Finding out what the school specializes in, or what is most popular, can give you an idea of what life will be like at the school and later on in your job search. This can also be what makes the school special, why it’s unique, and why you might be likely to attend.
What is (insert interest or favorite pastime here) like?
We all have that one thing that we love: sports, reading, gaming, or political or religious discussion and debate. Ask the admissions counselor how your interests or favorite pastimes are addressed at their school, and weigh it against others to see if it’s a good fit for you.
Remember, most colleges and universities will have things like financial aid, tuition and fees, residential buildings, and other empirical information easily accessible on their websites. Use the time with the admissions counselors to make that personal connection with the school which can’t be found on their website.