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The Hood Magazine

Real Talk: College Visit Basics

Feb 27, 2020 10:01AM ● By The Hood Magazine

The thought of sending your child away to college can bring mixed emotions for any parent. On one hand, you are so proud of the person they have become and want to watch them spread their wings and soar! But on the other hand, you want to make sure they are well taken care of and have all of the tools they need to succeed! We chatted with Jillian Lemons and Christy Duncan about their college visit experiences and have outlined some of their best pieces of advice.  

What kinds of things did you look for before getting to campus and while on campus? 

“The things I looked for while we were at campus was the security and safety of the dorms, cafeteria area and how the meal plan worked, laundry, etc.. Typical "mom" stuff.” - Jillian 

“We looked for what programs the schools offered, cost and logistics of getting home for the holidays. Oklahoma and Purdue were both long drives and no big airports near to fly home during the winter when roads can be less than desirable. We looked at job placement, intern/coop programs that the school offered along with programs offered before visiting. We signed up for big group visits for all of the schools like when they had all the science and engineering people there.” - Christy 

What kinds of questions did you ask when you were on campus? 

“We asked quite a few questions in regards to coursework, requirements, etc. We also talked about scholarships and other financial information. But we mostly learned about the classes she will be taking in order to earn her degree, cool activity clubs that the school offers, how living arrangements, etc.” - Jillian 

“We asked questions like do you offer e-books instead of all of the money needed for textbooks, programs to get students involved, job placement, how large classes are, student success rates of kids sticking with it were questions we asked on tours. We should have asked about how difficult it is to get into your major for your junior and senior year. Spencer has to apply to the college of science and engineering for his junior and senior years and found lots of kids didn’t get into their college of choice for their major so had to come up with a plan B.” - Christy 

What kind of emotions are you feeling at this stage of their journey? 

“I'm coming to realize that even though I'm sad about one chapter of my daughter's life closing, I'm even more excited for the next one to begin. She will be a senior next school year and I hope to make it all about her and the exciting time starting in her life, versus all about us as parent and what we're "losing" and how sad we will be.” Jillian 

“When Spencer and I went to sit in on a biomedical class and I went to the restroom before the class started and Spencer went into the class and when I came to the classroom and was looking to find him and he waved at me but he was still five years old in his Blues Clues outfit drinking chocolate milk when I saw him and not this almost grown up kid picking a career path.” - Christy 

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