Interviewing Tips for Summertime Campus Visits

July 21, 2011

Many parents dismiss the idea of making a campus visit over the summer.  After all, few students are around and classes are not in session.

But … there’s only so much time during the school year – especially your child’s senior year – so plan on visiting some campuses over the summer.

Take a tour of course, and plan ahead by scheduling an interview.  In the fall, your child can return to the schools that make his or her short list, maybe even for an overnight stay.

And speaking of interviews, some tips on making the mostof these important opportunities:

  • Research the school in advance.  Have a couple of questions prepared (nothing obvious that can be easily found on the website).
  • Arrive early.  It always takes time to park and find admissions.  It’s nice to walk around campus a bit first too, just to get settled.
  • Dress reasonably (no ripped clothing).  No gum!
  • Be yourself, be friendly and share your love of learning.
  • Share an interest or passion.  Be memorable.
  • Bring your resume in case they want to look at it.
  • Practice, practice, practice.  Firm handshake, good eye contact and a friendly smile.
  • Be ready with answers to typical questions, such as:
    Why are you interested in this school and why would you be a good match?
    What is your favorite or most recent book you read?
    Do you know what you want to study?
    How would your friends describe you?
    Tell me about a challenge you have had to overcome.
  • Ask the interviewer for a business card.  Send or email a thank you note.

One last thing: If the school doesn’t offer interviews, ask to meet the person in the admissions department who handles your town.  Don’t miss the chance to make a memorable, person to person connection during your visit!

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