Exploring colleges without visiting them
Jan 03, 2021
So we are still kind of stuck with social distancing and such. But that doesn't mean you have to miss out on exploring potential colleges. (NOTE: There are some colleges that are open to in person visitation.)
Let's start with 'who' and 'when' you should begin looking at colleges and narrowing the college list. It's perfectly fine for high school freshmen, sophomores and even earlier to begin getting a feel for the type of college they may want to attend. Parents should also be involved in the process since there will be money involved at some point. Plus, as a parent your teen is trusting you to advise, even if they seem to not want it. For in person fairs and tours parents should attend with their teen, but once your teen is a high school junior it is best to 'take a back seat' and do more listening that talking.
There are several virtual college fairs taking place this spring. Most will have several hundred colleges participating. (Keeping in mind there are more than 4000 4-year colleges and universities in the U.S.) Attending may help to narrow some of the choices.
I always suggest to begin narrowing college choices with any of the 'NO WAY IN H...' am I ever going to a school in (whatever region.) For example, my daughter doesn't do well in snow. Some students don't want to bare the heat of the south.
The truth is a large percentage of students attend colleges they never visited. So it's ok.
So start there and check out these virtual college fairs. You can also search on YouTube for pretty much any college. Some tours will be official and some just a college student telling what they like or don't like about their school and showing their dorm room.