Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

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Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Rohit GoyalIvy League CounselorHarvard University

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Yes indeed. This will help you judge the college not only by its cover. Scheduling the right time with the admission office will help you have a good experience of the classes and facilities available.

Lisa CarltonOwnerwww.collegematchpoint.com

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

I think overnight stays are really important when you are determining which college to attend. They allow to “try out” the college. You get to see what it is actually like to sleep in the dorm, attend classes, and live on the campus. I wish more students would do an overnight prior to choosing their college. Preparing for an overnight is about like preparing for a sleepover. The college will provide you with a list of what to bring. Be sure to bring some homework as your host will likely need to study!

Nicole PorterAdmissions ManagerPrivate University in AZ

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Make sure you get a schedule of what you will be doing while on campus. Also, ask for a list of items you needs such as sleeping bag, toiletries, etc. It is best to go to campus when there is an event to attend (sporting, student life, theatre event). Make sure you talk to different students about their experience. If you can talk to a professor and/or the dean in your area of interest and possibly attend a class, this will give you an HD image of the college you are considering.

Ronald Harris

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

An overnight visit is a great way to see both the academic and social sides of campus. This overnight stay will give you a much better idea as to whether or not you would be able to achieve your goals and academically prosper at that particular institution. To arrange an over-night stay, contact the Admissions Office and make prior arrangements. An overnight stay will give you a much better feel for the entire college atmosphere.

Emily GoldmanFounder and CounselorGrey Guidance

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

If it is possible to visit one of the campuses on your list and spend the night, it is definitely a worthwhile way to get a true sense of the full student experience at that school. The campus tour and college “quick facts” can be helpful as a place to start, but spending more time as a potential student (e.g., in an overnight stay) can help give you a much better understanding both of the school itself as well as of college in general. In terms of preparing, I would suggest thinking about what you are looking for most in a college, and assessing these factors during your visit. You might do some research beforehand about the things you’d want to be sure and experience (e.g., an academic class, the cafeteria, a basketball game) and seeing if you can make these happen during your visit. If possible, I would also suggested trying to stay with a student that most closely aligns with who you are and what you are looking for in a school and in the college experience. This might be a student with a similar major interest, extracurricular interest, hometown, etc. With all of this said, overnight stays might not be doable for all students because of scheduling, financial situations, or something else, so I would put these experiences in the important category but not necessarily a “must do.”

Lisa Ford

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays aren’t necessarily important. One night will not tell you if the college is a good fit or not. It would let you know if the dorms are set up in a way where you’d feel comfortable living in them. If you decide to stay overnight, plan it well in advance. Work with your admissions counselor, so it can be a good experience. She/He will know if there is a college game/play/band day/etc that day and would best match you with your interests.

Rebecca JosephExecutive Director & Foundergetmetocollege.org

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays are AWESOME. if you can do one during the fall of your senior year that is great. If you know someone at the college, try to stay with him or her. Sophomores and juniors are ideal. If you don’t know someone, go through the admissions office. Check out the dorms, go to classes, eat in the cafeteria. Be a real student. You can even meet with professors and coaches. You can write about your visit in college specific essays. Overnight visits are also key for making a decision. If you can’t decide where to attend, doing an overnight in the spring of senior is essential in helping make a college come alive for you!!!

Tomika Ferguson

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays are very important! If you have the opportunity to take advantage of one, this is an excellent opportunity to get a taste of what it is like for the life of a student at that campus. To prepare, you should definitely not over pack. Do your research on the important places on campus that are highlighted in brochures and on the internet and create a list of places, activities, and/or traditions that you want to learn more about. Ask your host to take you to a couple of their favorite study spots on campus to get a feel of the variety of options that you will have. Eat dorm food as much as possible! In some cases, this will be your life blood while you are a student at that particular institution. Prepare to visit a class by bringing a notebook to mark down what type of learning styles you see. And, be open to learning new things. An overnight stay is the opportunity for you to learn not to judge the campus or the students. Have fun!

Dr SharonAssociate Professor and Program Director of the International Business Bachelor ProgramFriends University

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

It is crucial that you find an institution that is a good fit with you. Colleges are not substitute goods, where one is pretty much like another. The culture of the place has a tremendous impact upon how much you enjoy your college years and how well you can learn in this environment. For that reason, spending time at the institution is very important. Remember that you are interviewing the institution just as much as the institution is interviewing you. If you arrive and don’t like what you see, move on to your other choices. This decision is too important to take lightly and to not do research.

Tira HarpazFounderCollegeBound Advice

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays can be extremely important in getting a real sense of campus life and how students interact. However, if you can’t stay overnight, don’t worry, because it’s certainly not essential. In addition, you should understand that you might not always be compatible with a student who agrees to host you, and I wouldn’t make a decision about a school on the basis of your overnight host. In terms of preparing for a stay, make sure that you have emailed your host to get information about where and when to meet and make sure you get a cell phone number if possible. Be polite, be neat and don’t expect too much attention from your host and you should be fine.

Brittany MaschalFounder/DirectorB. Maschal Educational Consulting

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

On campus, try to sit in on a class. This typically is not part of an info session and tour, but many schools do have this as ad “add on.” If a school has this option do it, same with having lunch with a current student. Explore what the school has to offer in as many ways that you can while you are there as you may only get to visit once. Off campus, try to check out the town or city around the campus. Are there things to do (and does this matter to you?) or is the campus itself the only place where the action is nearby? Is it easy to get to, is there an airport and or train station nearby if you are someone that wants to be able to travel/visit home easily? You need to be able to see yourself spending four year there so get off campus and make sure to check out your surroundings.

Nicholas Losito

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Prepare a list of Questions for the Campus, Mapped out the campus as well as off campus locations to be more cost effective in commute. Also get to have meetings with the Leadership of the campus to let them know who and what your objective are for the duration of achieving your degree.

Zahir RobbCollege CounselorThe Right Fit College

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays can really make a difference in your understanding of a college. College tours, information sessions and events rarely take place at night. During your stay, you can see what happens at this time. Is the campus alive? Empty? Too much partying? This is a great way to learn more about a school and what you can expect if you decide to enroll. Prepare yourself by creating a list of questions you would like to have answered during your stay. Some of these may be asked of the student who you pair with, while others you will ask of yourself during the stay. When you return, review those questions and evaluate your experience while it is fresh in your mind.

Megan DorseySAT Prep & College AdvisorCollege Prep LLC

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays, particularly those arranged through the college or university, can be your best tools in deciding if schools are right for you. To prepare, pack as you would for any overnight trip, but bring extra clothes to allow for comfortable, casual, and dressier attire. You may have a great host who exposes you to a variety of campus offerings or you could have a turkey who ditches you at some point to pursue his/her own agenda. Prepare for the “bad visit” by understanding that you may need to assert yourself, just as you will as an actual college student. You can learn more about a school in an overnight stay than you could in hours of reading or talking to students.

Sarah ContomichalosManagerEducational Advisory Services, LLC

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays, particularly on a week-end night can really give you a sense of the scene. In terms of preparing for an overnight stay, check with admissions for the details. A number of colleges organize overnight visits for high school students.

Greer BevelUniversity Counselor/IBDP History TeacherInternational School of Latvia

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Yes, overnight visits are important, especially if you’re visiting one of your top college choices. Overnight visits give you perspective into what a college is really like—outside of how the college represents itself in admission brochures. Also, overnight visits are important for you can see whether or not the college you’re visiting is a “suitcase college” (a school where everyone goes home for the weekend) or a college with a robust, tight-knit community filled with activities and opportunities for learning outside of the classroom. I recommend spending a Thursday evening on-campus. This way, you can get a brief but clear snapshot of the student community you could be immersing yourself into for the next four years. Enjoy your visit and keep your eyes and ears open. Have an “essential question list” in mind regarding academic and extracurricular life. Most of all, ask yourself: “Are students happy here?”

Emily Bloom

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Some schools dont offer students a chance to stay over until they have been accepted, but if you are interested in one that does allow prospies to stay over, you should! It is the best way to see what life at a particular school is really like. To plan, you should check the schedule online to see what events might be taking place. Ask the admissions office for a schedule of classes you can sit in on, other events like concerts and performances that might be taking place and you might even be provided a few meal tickets to eat in the cafeteria. If there is a particular professor whose class was very interesting to you, send an email letting him or her know how much you enjoyed it. Might help down the road!

Kristina DooleyIndependent Educational ConsultantEstrela Consulting

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

If you are given the option of spending the night on campus at a school to which you will apply or to which you have already applied, you should absolutely take advantage of the opportunity. By spending the night on campus, and then subsequently attending classes, you will get a feel for what it is like to be a student, not just a visitor. Though your overnight host may be a student employee that is paid by the Admission Office, the majority of the students in their dormitory will not be…thus you will be able to get a true feel for what a night is like on campus. You should keep in mind that an overnight stay is not just to have fun so don’t be surprised if your host needs to spend some time doing homework while you are there. You should bring along your own school work or a book to read, in case this happens. Another word of caution is that you and your host might be very different from one another, and you should keep in mind that they are just one person on campus. Even if your host wants to watch “Jeopardy” and you’d prefer “Project Runway”, don’t assume that you’d be the odd student out on campus…there are bound to be other Tim Gunn fans out there!

Reecy ArestyCollege Admissions/Financial Aid Expert & AuthorPayless For College, Inc.

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

An overnight stay should be very important, and if you get one, be thankful. Make sure to have a change of clothes & whatever happens find out if it’s typical or out of the ordinary. Don’t assume anything, you can be painfully surprised. Be sure to follow whatever rules there are, and find out in advance – but you should have already known that. Hopefully you’ll be able to audit a course or 2, talk to some professors on a one-to-one, and possibly present your credentials to some admissions folks & the provost – and don’t for a minute think that’s out of the question! I’ve had 10th & 11th graders meet w/chairmen of dept’s & presidents of universities when the schools DON’T even have on campus interviews! It’s all in the planning if you do it right.

Daniel KramerCollege AdvisorThe Wight Foundation

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight visits are great for as many colleges and universities on your list so long as you aren’t jeopardizing your GPA in the fall of senior year by missing too many days. I suggest, however, that the best overnight visit is one that involves sitting in on multiple classes. Get a sense of a professor or two. Experience how a college classroom feels like at this school. Listen to the professors and observe the students. Are they engaged? Are they excited to be there?

Pamela Hampton-GarlandOwnerScholar Bound

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays are important if the student believes it to have importance. One night in a staged environment does not provide a true idea of living, learning and socializing on a campus.

Sommer LangSchool Counselor

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Over night stays can be fun and can show you what your daily life would be like. Overnight stays aren’t necessary, however. Typically, after spending a few hours on a campus you will have a good idea as to if it is a good fit for you.

Henry DelAngeloHigh School Counselor 20 + yearsYour Key to College

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays can be extremely important and well worth the time if you plan the right way for them. This is a visit to get a sense of the academic and social life on campus. Plan to sit in on a few classes and perhaps meet with a professor that teaches a class within your intended major. Arranging to stay with a friend or a student that had attended your high school is a good way to get on campus and feel comfortable.

Garth H

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

No. they are not.

Gerald Bradshaw

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Yes! the overnight component of New Student is a great way to meet students from different places, and connect with the campus.

SmartChoice Consultants

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Overnight stays are not as important as the actual visit but if you plan to live in the town for the next 4 years you should make sure you are comfortable with the environment. To prepare for an overnight stay you must first prioritize what is important to you and take care of what is at the top of the list first. Because it’s overnight you have obviously seen the campus during the day and now you want to see the environment at night. Drive by the location you will live and double check if the coffee shop next door remains a coffee shop and not turn into a club causing you to lose sleep. Look around the main library at night to ensure it is safe. Verify there is trustworthy transportation and it will run late enough for your needs. If you will own your car do you have to park near a poorly lit area? Attend a few social events to get an idea of the neighborhood. You will get a better feeling of the people around you when you see them in a relaxed environment.

Diana HansonCommon Sense College CounselingCollege Mentors

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

Once you’ve narrowed down your choices to one or two, having an overnight can be super helpful–it will give you a strong sense of a particular college. When you contact the college regarding an overnight, ask to attend a class or two in your area(s) of interest as well as spend time with your ‘student host’ participating in college activities. If you’re an athlete and going to an NCAA III college, contact the coach ahead of time and try and arrange to attend a practice (some will invite you to practice with the team). Also, make sure you find time to wander the town around the college to get a feel for day-to-day life there.

Candyce Simpson

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

If possible to arrange an overnight stay that would be awesome. Having time to see how a campus and students live after hours can give a completely different perspective. The sounds that go on in the evening are quite different in the day. It is important to try and get a glimpse of the environment overnight. Can you study? Can you sleep? Do you feel safe? Preparing for an overnight is like preparing for summer camp, pack and expect the unexpected. You are on your own and can get an idea of how you will be making independent decisions about your bedtime, study time, and homework. Maybe you might feel a little scared to be away from home. All of the feelings and experiences that happen during the overnight stay can help with the final decision.

Candyce Simpson

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

If possible to arrange an overnight stay that would be awesome. Having time to see how a campus and students live after hours can give a completely different perspective. The sounds that go on in the evening are quite different in the day. It is important to try and get a glimpse of the environment overnight. Can you study? Can you sleep? Do you feel safe? Preparing for an overnight is like preparing for summer camp, pack and expect the unexpected. You are on your own and can get an idea of how you will be making independent decisions about your bedtime, study time, and homework. Maybe you might feel a little scared to be away from home. All of the feelings and experiences that happen during the overnight stay can help with the final decision.

Candyce Simpson

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

If possible to arrange an overnight stay that would be awesome. Having time to see how a campus and students live after hours can give a completely different perspective. The sounds that go on in the evening are quite different in the day. It is important to try and get a glimpse of the environment overnight. Can you study? Can you sleep? Do you feel safe? Preparing for an overnight is like preparing for summer camp, pack and expect the unexpected. You are on your own and can get an idea of how you will be making independent decisions about your bedtime, study time, and homework. Maybe you might feel a little scared to be away from home. All of the feelings and experiences that happen during the overnight stay can help with the final decision.

Candyce Simpson

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

If possible to arrange an overnight stay that would be awesome. Having time to see how a campus and students live after hours can give a completely different perspective. The sounds that go on in the evening are quite different in the day. It is important to try and get a glimpse of the environment overnight. Can you study? Can you sleep? Do you feel safe? Preparing for an overnight is like preparing for summer camp, pack and expect the unexpected. You are on your own and can get an idea of how you will be making independent decisions about your bedtime, study time, and homework. Maybe you might feel a little scared to be away from home. All of the feelings and experiences that happen during the overnight stay can help with the final decision.

Candyce Simpson

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

If possible to arrange an overnight stay that would be awesome. Having time to see how a campus and students live after hours can give a completely different perspective. The sounds that go on in the evening are quite different in the day. It is important to try and get a glimpse of the environment overnight. Can you study? Can you sleep? Do you feel safe? Preparing for an overnight is like preparing for summer camp, pack and expect the unexpected. You are on your own and can get an idea of how you will be making independent decisions about your bedtime, study time, and homework. Maybe you might feel a little scared to be away from home. All of the feelings and experiences that happen during the overnight stay can help with the final decision.

Nancy MilneOwnerMilne Collegiate Consulting

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

I think overnight stays are a huge bonus. Often they are only available to admitted students in an attempt to seal the deal. Because college students tend to stay up late, this gives you a chance to really see things in action. At the end of the day, students let their guard down and may be more candid than in a formal tour/info session. Go in to it with an open mind, you may be surprised by some of the behavior you witness.

Nancy MilneOwnerMilne Collegiate Consulting

Are overnight stays important? How should I prepare for an overnight stay?

I think overnight stays are a huge bonus. Often they are only available to admitted students in an attempt to seal the deal. Because college students tend to stay up late, this gives you a chance to really see things in action. At the end of the day, students let their guard down and may be more candid than in a formal tour/info session. Go in to it with an open mind, you may be surprised by some of the behavior you witness.

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