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When should you visit the schools?

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When should you visit the schools? [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 06:40
Let's say you could only visit the school only once.

Should you visit before you apply and talk about the visit in the essays or wait till you get an interview invite and then interview with the adcomm?
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 07:02
To me, before.

U will be able to use all what u did/saw/said/heard in your essays :)
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 07:39
Another question related to this...is it better to go at end of September or end of October. I would like to visit schools I am planning on applying to for R1 at the end of September or the beginning of October so I would have time to work on my essays and not feel rushed. However, its very close to the start of school so 1st years would not be involved that heavily in what the school is really about yet.

Are tour guides typically 1st year or 2nd year students? If its second year my concerns probably aren't really much of an issue. Do you have the opportunity to sit on more than one class (1st year and a 2nd year) and can you request a specific class or is it all very structured by the admissions office when you go on tours?
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Re: When should you visit the schools? [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 10:45
gmatclb wrote:
Let's say you could only visit the school only once.

Should you visit before you apply and talk about the visit in the essays or wait till you get an interview invite and then interview with the adcomm?


Start visiting now. Instead of focussing on essays, this is a good time to visit the schools and undersand the programs before jumping into the essays.
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 11:15
riverripper wrote:
Another question related to this...is it better to go at end of September or end of October. I would like to visit schools I am planning on applying to for R1 at the end of September or the beginning of October so I would have time to work on my essays and not feel rushed. However, its very close to the start of school so 1st years would not be involved that heavily in what the school is really about yet.

Are tour guides typically 1st year or 2nd year students? If its second year my concerns probably aren't really much of an issue. Do you have the opportunity to sit on more than one class (1st year and a 2nd year) and can you request a specific class or is it all very structured by the admissions office when you go on tours?


Visit before applying.
Tours can be with 2nd years and info sessions can be with adcoms, although you may attend some events with 1st years (eg: lunch with a student). Regardless of that, I still suggest visiting before applying. Students that volunteer for activities will do their best, would have been coached and will have been involved in the schools' spirit since admission, probably through some pre-courses, admit weekend, etc. Don't discount them just because they've been on campus only 4 to 6 weeks.

Classes: you need to book online and check the alternatives. At some schools you may be able to book more than one class or choose between a list of classes offered the day you visit. At other schools, you are assigned to a class. It depends on the schools and you. Attending a class that somehow matches your interests seems like a good idea. You typically visit 1st year classes.

L.

Last edited by lepium on 04 Jun 2007, 11:54, edited 1 time in total.
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 11:30
Personally, I disagree with visiting a school before the application. I only visited one school before hearing a decision and that was for a required interview. Save your money. If they want you they will admit you and then you can go visit the school.
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 11:41
I would strongly recommend visiting all the schools that you are considering before you apply...it really makes a big difference and im speaking from experience. By visiting, you 1. Show interest in the program; 2. Get to meet students and get their feedback (as opposed to the marketing guys in admissions)...some students will tell you why they choose to come here and some of that info might give you a lil bit extra while writing essays; 3. Get personalized material for the essays from each school that would definitely make your application stronger.

Remember you need to make your app as strong as possible BEFORE you submit. If you wait and think you will visit during the interview, thats what you will be doing...waiting...i.e.. if the interview call does not come.
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 12:05
cnc2 wrote:
Personally, I disagree with visiting a school before the application. I only visited one school before hearing a decision and that was for a required interview. Save your money. If they want you they will admit you and then you can go visit the school.


I somehow agree with your proposal, but at some schools (yield-concerned schools) not visiting is usually interpreted as lack of interest or commitment. I'd say that in the end you will need to balance your desire to increase your chances with your time limitations and economical concerns.

But if you are applying to MIT and don't visit, you are toast (don't quote me on this one, it's just my educated guess).

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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 12:30
I've heard the same thing about MIT. Some schools really want to know that you have taken the time to thoroughly research the school.
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 13:57
I think this is a good question.

Visiting both before application and at interview time would be great.

I think the rest depends on the school: some REALLY want you to interview in-person (Duke, UNC). I'm glad that I saved my visit for that.

Others seem perfectly ok with the phone, which means you can use your visit for essay fodder.

Here's an idea: this summer, during any travels you might do, visit whatever schools are in the area. I visited both Berkeley and Stanford when I was in the area. The adcoms give great essay advice and you can learn much about b-school in general. I never applied to either, but the experience was quite valuable.
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2007, 18:35
Just an FYI, I actually chose to do a phone interview at UNC despite their encouragement (on the website) to do a campus interview. I was still accepted at UNC despite never visiting.

As far as the campus visit helping with decision making, I think you are better off to clearly define your post MBA career goals and just study the employment reports from each school. Also, take the time to interview current students. If you visit a school before applying, I would visit only those nearby or your top choice.
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Re: When should you visit the schools? [#permalink] New post 06 Jun 2007, 08:15
sm176811 wrote:
gmatclb wrote:
Let's say you could only visit the school only once.

Should you visit before you apply and talk about the visit in the essays or wait till you get an interview invite and then interview with the adcomm?


Start visiting now. Instead of focussing on essays, this is a good time to visit the schools and undersand the programs before jumping into the essays.


Are there any schools that have tours during the summer? I will be visiting Boston at the end of June and Harvard only has info sessions available, tours are not available during the summer. I believe the same thing goes for all the schools that I am looking into (Chicago GSB, Kellog, and Ross). I'd love to be able to visit during the summer but the sessions seem pretty skeletal.
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 [#permalink] New post 06 Jun 2007, 09:47
I think spring is a great time to visit schools. (I know I am mentioning this a little late). I only say this because I had to cram all my visits in during the fall. Many schools don't start doing visits until the October time frame. This made some round one apps hard to complete. I actually turned in my one app while I was on another campus. If you are planning on applying for early admission or 1st round, visiting early will help.
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 [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2007, 08:55
Is it a bad idea to visit schools in the summer? I know school isn't in session then, but most of my schools have summer visit schedules. Fall visits are impossible for me due to my workload and travel schedule in the fall...and I want to have the visit experience in time for my fall apps.
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 [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2007, 10:31
venguyen wrote:
Is it a bad idea to visit schools in the summer? I know school isn't in session then, but most of my schools have summer visit schedules. Fall visits are impossible for me due to my workload and travel schedule in the fall...and I want to have the visit experience in time for my fall apps.


It's not ideal, but it's ok. I went to stanford and berkeley last july. I didn't get to sit in on class or have lunch with students, but Stanford had their asst director of admissions do a song and dance that was helpful, and Berkeley did this big, crazy all-day-long session that had presentations from admissions, financial aid, career services, a student panel, and a tour. That was particularly informative.
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Re: When should you visit the schools? [#permalink] New post 01 Jan 2010, 07:44
Very helpful thread. I plan to apply in fall 2010 and aim to visit schools this March. Is the beginning of March a good time to visit or are students already mainly busy with exams? Also, what is your experience with visits - is it realistic to do four visits in a week, assuming all preparation has been done in advance?
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Re: When should you visit the schools? [#permalink] New post 17 Mar 2010, 17:11
I visited one school and met one professor and some students. But, I have to say I was quite unprepared and crammed a list of questions to ask, only hours before I met the students. To one question I asked, one of the students answered "that stuff is on the website" in a dismissive tone. I certainly don't want a repeat experience like that! I'm attending another school in April, but I hope to have uncovered every single detail on the program BEFORE I visit. I believe Richard Montauk's book has some good insights on what to look for in a campus visit and how best to prepare for one.
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Re: When should you visit the schools? [#permalink] New post 17 Mar 2010, 18:29
I also recommend visiting the school before your application begins. It gives an idea of what you really like and dislike.
Re: When should you visit the schools?   [#permalink] 17 Mar 2010, 18:29
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