19 Questions to Ask on College Tours in 2021
Now that in-person college visits are resuming at some schools, consider asking these key questions.
You’ve got to go before you know.
You’ve heard it a hundred times—from your guidance counselor to your Great Aunt Edna—the very best way to know if a college is the right place for you is to visit it in person.
But 2020 threw us all for a loop, and now that in-person college visits are resuming at some (but not all!) schools, what are the right questions to ask in this maybe-coming-back-to-somewhat-normal world?
Before You Go:
- Are you giving in-person tours right now? It may seem obvious, but don’t forget to find out ahead of time if the schools you’re interested in are even offering on-campus tours at the moment. (Don’t waste the gas on a road trip you don’t need to take, right?) Good news for us Vermonters; we’re open to visits!
- What are your on-campus health and safety protocols? Some schools may still require masks indoors (or even outdoors for groups), while others may have relaxed the rules due to state and/or federal guideline changes. Make sure you’re prepared either way—especially if you or anyone in your family/friend group needs to practice extra precautions for health reasons. (Check out our latest health guidelines here.)
- When are your tours offered? Depending on how close together the schools you’re interested in are, you might be able to see one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Plan ahead of time to make sure you get your timing right, and don’t try to do more than two in a day.
While You’re There:
Now’s the time to get your questions answered! Make sure you touch on a variety of topics, and keep in mind that you may be meeting with current students, admissions folks, and even faculty.
Academics—go beyond “Do you have my major?”
- How connected are students and faculty? Is it easy to ask questions and see them during office hours?
- Do you have a study abroad program? (St. Mike’s students can learn in more than 100 countries!)
- Do you have tutoring programs, writing centers, and other academic support systems in place?
- How are classes offered—in person, online, hybrid?
Career Prep—look for schools that are dedicated to their students’ success after graduation.
- What percentage of students do internships or undergraduate research, and when can I start?
- How many students use the career center?
- What kind of career prep do you get? Mock interviews, networking events, resume writing workshops, four-year career planning?
- How many students have jobs when they graduate? (At St. Mike’s, it’s 95%!)
Student Life—ask the right questions to find your perfect mix of social and service, high-energy and low-key, faith-based and secular.
- How easy is it to get settled as a first-year? (Here, we offer a weekend-long orientation and first-year seminar courses so you can get to know your classmates.)
- What is living in (fill-in-the-blank) city like? (Burlington, VT, is awesome, BTW.)
- Do students go home on the weekends, or are they involved on campus?
- How is diversity and equity handled?
Admissions and Affordability
- How complicated is the application process? (We use the Common App—smooth sailing.)
- How are applications considered? What do you take into consideration? (At Saint Michael’s, we’re interested in everything that makes you YOU. Because of this, we also don’t require standardized test scores.)
- How many students get financial aid or scholarships? (At St. Mike’s, more than 95% are awarded merit- or need-based financial aid.)
- What percentage of students are international? Veterans? Transfers?
If you’re ready to see what life is like at Saint Michael’s, join us in person or online for an admissions event.
In addition to our in-person information sessions, we also offer special events, such as Summer Saturdays (themed tours focused on the environment, the arts, or our home of Burlington).
(Plus, when you participate in an on-campus or online admissions event, you’ll qualify for our $1,500 Campus Visit Grant renewable for all four years at St. Mike’s!)