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College Corner: College Fairs

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Each year, FC invites a diverse group of colleges onto its campus for a college fair. This year’s college fair will be taking place Sept. 22 in the courtyard.

September is college fair month. College representatives travel the nation totting pennants and pens, answering the grueling questions of future applicants and their glowing parents.

In this first installment of College Corner, College Fairs are already starting. Juniors and seniors have the opportunity to visit with admissions folks from universities and colleges from around the state in Fresno area events.

As students pace the isles of packed out convention centers, the pure number of colleges represented can be overwhelming. Like many students that show up to these events, you could walk around aimlessly and not ask any questions – or at least none that are relevant to your college search. Or you could plan ahead and walk in with confidence, ready to tackle your college search. In hopes of making these events more beneficial, I would like to share a few tips with you.

Know Before You Go:

1) Review the list of college fair participants

2) Locate the schools you want to interview

3) Check out the schedule of information sessions by visiting the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC).

Make the most of your time at the college fairs. How often will you be able to learn about 50 or more colleges in an all-in-one event? If you ask the right questions, the night could take you several steps closer to your college decision. — Michelle Warkentin, Academic Advisor

Seize the Day: Make the most of your time at the college fairs. How often will you be able to learn about 50 or more colleges in an all-in-one event? If you ask the right questions, the night could take you several steps closer to your college decision. Below is a great reference guide to some questions you may want to ask:

1) What are the admission requirements?

2) What kind of student are you looking for?

3) What majors are offered? Which is the most popular?

4) How much will it cost? What financial aid options are offered?

5) When must I choose a major?

6) What is the average class size?

7) What type of housing is available?

8) What is the school known for?

9) What are recent graduates doing now?

For a more detailed list of questions, visit the NACAC. At the end of the event it can be easy to move on and forget the important information that you have just heard. Instead, take a few moments to jot down the things that you liked and disliked about the colleges you learned about. According to CollegeBoard, you need to get rid of information that is not helpful to your search, “Throw out the pamphlets of colleges you’ve ruled out so you can focus on the colleges you’re interested in.”

I recommend students research about the colleges they are most interested in and schedule visits to those institutions as soon as possible in order to add a more personal perspective. The college you attend will ultimately shape your decision-making, personal growth, career choice, and so much more!

Upcoming Events:

  • Fresno County College Fair, Sept. 9, 6-8:30 p.m., financial aid session 5:30-6:30 p.m. at the New Convention Center Exhibit Hall.
  • Fresno Christian College Fair, Sept. 22, 12:40-1:20 p.m. in the courtyard outside of Building 6.
  • NACCAP College Fair, Sept. 22, 6-8 p.m. at Buchanan High School

Another list of college fair questions can be found via The CollegeBoard. For more information, parents and students can contact Michelle Warkentin, academic advisor. Follow The Feather via Twitter @thefeather, Instagram @thefeatheronline and Facebook @thefeatheronline.

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