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Making the most out of school visits

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Intern
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Joined: 07 Jan 2008
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Making the most out of school visits [#permalink] New post 28 Jan 2008, 14:51
I'll be in the US for 3 weeks soon and plan to visit 3 schools on the East Coast during my stay.

I remember how some of you mentioned school visits (and the students you met) in your application essays. Thus, it seems like the visits played an important part in your decision making process (and more specifically in answering the question "Why school X?").

I feel that a school visit can bring the strengths and weaknesses of each school to life (e.g. teaching methods, coursework, extracurricular opportunities, campus life).
Furthermore, I hope to get a first-hand impression of the personalities each institution attracts. They will probably make up a majority of my day-to-day living during my MBA studies and beyond (as classmates, future business peers, roommates etc.) so I want to get a good idea of what to expect.

That said, I was wondering what those of you who already have a couple of school visits under their belts got out of these experiences? Looking back on them, what is your advice on making the most of business school visits?

Thanks in advance for your help! Again, this is a thread which will hopefully benefit all those applying for the '09 intake.
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Re: Making the most out of school visits [#permalink] New post 28 Jan 2008, 15:12
I think its better if you turned up unannounced and hide in the shadows so that you can experience the real environment knowing for sure that nothing has been put on ;)

I`ll get my coat...
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Re: Making the most out of school visits [#permalink] New post 28 Jan 2008, 15:25
i specifically asked strudents about what they disliked about a school. Most students are honest. Also ask abt their career services, night life around the place :wink I applied to a lot of schools in the north (you wudnt face this prob) and i asked abt their winter activities. Do visit a class (not a staged one as in GSB).

listen into what others are asking. You would get a lot of info via that,
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Re: Making the most out of school visits [#permalink] New post 29 Jan 2008, 20:19
My 0.02$:
- Do visit a class (or more if you can).
- Get a feeling for where and how you would live (dorm, apartment, on or off campus, etc.) if accepted.
- Get a "vibe" from the schools by talking to students, adcoms or just walking around.
- Try to address any specific concerns: is the school pet friendly? is the gym overcrowded in the evenings? how much does on campus parking cost per year? What vegetarian options are served at the cafeteria?

Most the information would not necessarily make it into your essays, but unless you can afford to visit twice, will come in handy if and when you are accepted.

- I would not worry so much about "networking" because: a) I don't believe it makes too much of a difference (at least at the application stage). b) Both adcoms and students meet dozens of students a week and it is quite likely that if you push strong enough to make an impression it might be a negative one. If you click with someone who is willing to answer any further questions later on, then fine. Otherwise, just write down their names in case you want to mention them later on and move on.

L.
Re: Making the most out of school visits   [#permalink] 29 Jan 2008, 20:19
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