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Along with the greatly anticipated return of college football and pumpkin-spice-everything to the East Coast, the arrival of September means one very important thing for the faculty and staff at Richmond: students are (finally!) back on campus. As excited as we are for the change of pace, it’s great news for prospective students, too.
If I had to choose two emotions to describe students at the start of their college search, I would pick “excitement” and “uncertainty.” The appeal of the first is apparent. With thousands of colleges and universities vying for your attention, the journey to discover your ideal college home is one of endless possibility. Yes, excitement is the easy part. But it is the latter word – uncertainty – which I find most compelling. In recent years, uncertainty in the college search process has gained a negative connotation of “directionless” and “lost.” In the famous words of J.R.R. Tolkien, “Not all those who wander are lost.” Often, the best outcomes come from those who keep an open mind.
Now introducing the latest and greatest group of Spider Diaries! Spider Diaries is a wonderful place to follow in the footsteps of current Richmond Spiders as they share what it’s like to be a student; from class time to after hours to everything in between. Through their blogs, you’ll have the opportunity to share in the ups and the downs, laugh through the quirky and the candid moments, and follow cool campus happenings coming their way throughout the year. It’s my hope that you’ll use these as a gateway to learn about student life at UR – beyond admission facts and figures.
A little while back, we ran a post called Seven Questions to Ask Colleges, designed for high school juniors as they started to explore colleges and make their first college visits.
As we head into autumn, those questions are just as valid for high school seniors to ask. But with the application process and college itself so much closer, and with more in-depth visit options often available to seniors, there are also some deeper questions that you ought to be asking when you visit campuses now. Here are seven suggestions.
Friends, I’ve officially hit week two on the road of my second fall recruitment travel season. In fact, as I write this post, I may or may not be sitting alone in the parking lot of a Hampton Inn mooching free internet while waiting for an evening college program to begin (hint: that’s most definitely where I am right now). At least I have a pumpkin spice latte to ease the homesickness of missing another beautiful fall in Virginia.
College rankings tend to be a pretty hot topic, for a myriad of reasons. Year after year, the national media runs stories and op-eds calling attention to the rankings and their controversial nature. Philosophically, universities and admission offices often struggle with how to react to rankings (as you’d expect, colleges will tend to boast about rankings when they’re favorable and ignore or decry them when they’re not). But I’m more interested in the practical. Should you use rankings in your college search/decision-making process? If so, how, and to what extent? That’s what we’ll be mythbusting today. If I have time, I'll also include a subsequent post with some specific examples I frequently encounter.
As spring rolls around, the college search process progresses toward campus visits for many high school sophomores and juniors, even as it progresses into its final stages for seniors, who will soon be considering where to enroll. There are lots of potential questions to ask of colleges when visiting campuses and narrowing down your list. I’ve been asked thousands of different questions by prospective students and parents throughout my time in admission, and I thought this would be an appropriate time of year to share some of the most perceptive ones I’ve heard. Here are seven questions to consider asking of colleges – questions that get past some typical misconceptions and reveal a little more about what a college has to offer.
Senior Assistant Director of Admission
A Richmond alumnus (Class of 2007), Tom has been working and blogging for the Office of Admission since he graduated. He loves his alma mater and the city that shares its name.
Beth Anne Spacht
Assistant Director of Admission
Beth Anne was a double major at Richmond (English and Latin American & Iberian Studies) and now enjoys helping prospective students discover the best of her alma mater.
The University of Richmond is a highly ranked liberal arts university offering an extraordinary combination of the liberal arts with law, business, leadership studies, and continuing education. The university is consistently named a best value in higher education by leading publications.