College visits are important. Well, at least, that’s what they tell us. Deciding which college to attend is a really hard decision but according to our school counselors, visiting the campus makes the decision easier.
Brochures and websites can only show you so much. College visits give students an opportunity to get a firsthand view. During a college visit, high school students are able to attend an actual college class or activity to really get a feel for what the institution is like. College visits give high schools students a chance to talk to faculty, college students, department heads, financial aid officers, and people in the admissions office.
Quite a few colleges and universities also offer an overnight visit. This allows high school students to spend a day the way a college student would. Often times, they are given a tour of the campus. They attend a class and whatever activity is going on that night. Then they spend the night with a college student so they are able to see what housing is like.
My friend, Kelsey, and I have been thinking about attending Snow College next fall. Since Tooele High will excuse seniors from two days of school in order to visit colleges, we thought we might as well attend a Snow Blast — the clever name given to an overnight visit to Snow College. It sounded like fun. We would miss school and get a bunch of free stuff. We attended the Snow Blast that was held on Friday, Nov. 16 and Saturday, Nov. 17.
We left for our Snow Blast Thursday after school, even though we didn’t have to check-in until Friday afternoon. Kelsey and I left earlier than needed so we could hang out with Kelsey’s brother, Chad, who is currently attending Snow.
On our first evening, Chad gave us a tour of campus. He showed us the (dangerous) moving bookcases in the new library and we took pictures in front of the statue of Lorenzo and Erastus Snow. Chad showed us the student center and how to connect to the wi-fi and where the bookstore was. It was all very informative. Well, kind of.
After our unofficial tour, we went back and got ready for sleep, but we didn’t sleep much. We were up until 2:30 AM watching Disney’s “Tangled.” From my first experience sleeping over at a college, I learned that college kids probably stay up until all hours watching Disney movies.
The next morning came early. Kelsey and I could have slept in but we were sleeping in the living room, next to the front door. Despite their lack of sleep, a few kids were out the door at 7:30 a.m. and they didn’t know how to close doors quietly.
Friday afternoon, Kelsey and I checked-in for the official start of our Snow Blast. There was a short information session and we were assigned a student ambassador. Kelsey and I were a assigned to a really sweet girl who was supposed to give us a tour of the campus. The “tour” Chad gave us was a lot more informative than the one she gave us.
When we walked past the math building, other tour groups were going inside but our ambassador kept walking and said, “You won’t ever go in there unless you have a lame math class.” When we walked passed the statue of Lorenzo and Erastus Snow, other tour groups were reading the plaque and taking pictures, but our ambassador said, “I don’t even know who they are but there’s a pretty sweet statue of them.” Luckily, we had already taken our picture with the statue on our tour with Chad.
In the end, our school counselors were right and visiting Snow College was really helpful, even though we had a less-than-perfect tour guide. The Snow Blast helped me make my (hopefully) final decision on what school to attend next.
Kristine Johnson is a senior at Tooele High.