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# Visiting Campuses - How Important?

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Intern
Joined: 25 May 2008
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Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 15:45
So I'm based in the SF Bay Area and have been to a class visitation at Haas already. However, most the schools I'm applying to are located on the East Coast/Midwest (NYU, Columbia, Cornell, Yale, Michigan). Naturally, visiting all, or even a few of them, would be a bit of a financial drain. My question is, how important is visiting the school in terms of enhancing the chances of getting in? Would not visiting the campus/sitting in on a class be viewed as a significant negative?

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Current Student
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 16:35
I have heard many times how visiting schools shows your interest and not that visiting can indeed be looked down upon by adcoms. I am sure some of the more experienced of us will chime in and provide more insight.

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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 16:47
jpong21 wrote:
So I'm based in the SF Bay Area and have been to a class visitation at Haas already. However, most the schools I'm applying to are located on the East Coast/Midwest (NYU, Columbia, Cornell, Yale, Michigan). Naturally, visiting all, or even a few of them, would be a bit of a financial drain. My question is, how important is visiting the school in terms of enhancing the chances of getting in? Would not visiting the campus/sitting in on a class be viewed as a significant negative?

Try to squeeze Columbia, NYU, and Yale into one visit. I think the more remote the school (ie Michigan and Cornell), the less they expect you to come visit until interview time.
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Current Student
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Schools: Georgetown, UNC, UCLA, Duke, Wake Forest
Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 16:50
As was said, it is extremely important to visit the schools you are applying to, within reason. I flew to LA to visit USC in April, just so that I'd have plenty of info for my essays and I could apply first round. It shows the AdComs that you're serious about the school, you learn valuable information about the program with a first-hand account, and you can more accurately gauge fit. The info it gives you for your essays can be invaluable.

That being said, it is difficult to visit every school on a given list. I already know I'll be taking a road trip down South (UVA-Darden, UNC Kenan-Flagler, and Duke-Fuqua), as well as a quick trip to New York to visit NYU, as those are the schools most important to me. Flying to Texas to visit McCombs or to Arizona to visit ASU would kill my financial resources. You've got to pick your spots and go all the way.
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 17:09
Makes sense. I will certainly try to make it up to the NYC campuses at some point.

Omne - Just curious, how did you like USC? I did my undergrad there, best 4 years of my life.

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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 17:23
jpong21 wrote:
Makes sense. I will certainly try to make it up to the NYC campuses at some point.

Omne - Just curious, how did you like USC? I did my undergrad there, best 4 years of my life.

Loved every second of it. I want to work in entertainment marketing and consulting, and I don't think there's a better place for me to be. Loved the people I met, enjoyed the class I sat in on, loved the campus.
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 17:32
Any particular reason why UCLA is not on your list.
Omne wrote:
I want to work in entertainment marketing and consulting

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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 18:50
Would you gain any value (for yourself or your essay/adcom) to visit during the summer? I'd like to start visiting schools however I feel I would gain more when school is in session. The main problem with that though is that once school is back in session I will already be deep in the essays and application process.

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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 19:04
I dont see value in visiting during the summer...if you are in the area you can certainly pop in. Some schools have summer tours and you can put that in the check column. I wouldnt travel to see any school when its out of session. Unfortunately the R1 deadlines are so close to the start of school it makes it tough to visit...some schools dont even allow visits until right around deadlines.
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2008, 21:52
Extremely important. I got into the three schools I visited and dinged at the one I did not visit. Plus, it shows the level of interest if you are willing to fly across country to visit.
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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04 Jun 2008, 02:59
I got into the one school I didnt visit but dinged by two that I visited...I think a visit is a miniscule piece. If you dont visit you need to go to every event they put on in your city, there are plenty of those.
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Current Student
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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04 Jun 2008, 04:12
Oh, UCLA is on my list. They just dropped the ball on my visit. I had been trying to set it up since February, and they didn't get back to me until early April that their class visit schedule hadn't been finalized yet. By then it was too late. I'm hoping I'm invited to interview at USC, so I can visit UCLA when I'm there and apply R2.

I think the visit isn't so much a determining factor in whether you are accepted or not, but rather provides good material for essays and the interview. When you're asked the "Why MBA? Why here? Why now?" question, you've got plenty of examples to prove how interested you are in the program.
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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04 Jun 2008, 05:02
How exactly would you weave it into your essays that you visited? Would you just overtly say, "When I visited campus...I felt at home" or some cheesy statement like that? I really want to visit as many schools as possible but at the same time I'm trying to determine if it's worth it to visit BEFORE I turn in my application or if I should wait until interviews?

Regarding info sessions, my problem is that I live in a smaller town and am not very close to any large cities that usually have info sessions. (Probably 5-8 hour drive to the closest city with info sessions)

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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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04 Jun 2008, 15:02
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cpgmba wrote:
How exactly would you weave it into your essays that you visited? Would you just overtly say, "When I visited campus...I felt at home" or some cheesy statement like that? I really want to visit as many schools as possible but at the same time I'm trying to determine if it's worth it to visit BEFORE I turn in my application or if I should wait until interviews?

Regarding info sessions, my problem is that I live in a smaller town and am not very close to any large cities that usually have info sessions. (Probably 5-8 hour drive to the closest city with info sessions)

Sort of. You could use it for the "Why [insert school]?" question. "I knew as soon as I visited Professor Johnson's Global Strategy class that it was the right school for me. The way the students were engaged in the discussion of the Russian oil market made it clear that I could excel in this environment. After speaking with Kevin Whatever, the president of the Entertainment Marketing Association, I further knew that MBA University is a perfect fit." That shows that you took the time to really research the school and learn all you could, and didn't just select the school because it's a top 10 in a sunny location, etc. It works just as well in an interview situation.

I'm not advocating visiting every school you are applying to. I think few of us have the time or financial resources to do so. In a perfect world, that's exactly what you should do. Think about it like this...it's better to visit the school and gauge your fit BEFORE you exert time and energy doing the apps and essays, agonizing through the wait period, getting invited to visit campus to interview, and after being there for five minutes you realize it's not the right place.

The moral of the visit: You discover your level of "fit", and you get material for essays and interviews. Whenever feasible (or realistic), visit!
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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04 Jun 2008, 19:52
Great point. My only worry now is that with summer here I won't have a lot of opportunity to interact with students/professors. Looks like I may have to cram a few visits in right after school starts before applications are due.

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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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06 Jun 2008, 12:31
cpgmba wrote:
Great point. My only worry now is that with summer here I won't have a lot of opportunity to interact with students/professors. Looks like I may have to cram a few visits in right after school starts before applications are due.

Yeah, that's the issue. I scrambled to get to LA to visit USC in April, so that I'd have ample time for the essays. There's so little time between when school starts and R1 apps are due, it's hard to visit, learn, and utilize the information before the due date. Basically, you just need to do all that you can. Obviously you can't visit every school on your list, just do your best
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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06 Jun 2008, 13:44
riverripper wrote:
I got into the one school I didnt visit but dinged by two that I visited...I think a visit is a miniscule piece. If you dont visit you need to go to every event they put on in your city, there are plenty of those.

how come you didnt visit kellogg when you were visiting chicago gsb?

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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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06 Jun 2008, 13:55
dabots wrote:
riverripper wrote:
I got into the one school I didnt visit but dinged by two that I visited...I think a visit is a miniscule piece. If you dont visit you need to go to every event they put on in your city, there are plenty of those.

how come you didnt visit kellogg when you were visiting chicago gsb?

They didnt allow visits yet. Classes had just begun, it was a few another week plus after gsb live that they allowed that. I called and tried to organize a visit for some of us on here...figured a group thing would better the chances. I was told that since students were just about to begin classes they couldnt accommodate us. Though I think Dosa visited with someone he knew there.

I did talk to students and alums though, went to three events that Kellogg was at or put on and talked to adcoms and alums at those. I had more material than I could use to show my interest and what I put into learning about the school.
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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06 Jun 2008, 17:00
jpong21 wrote:
So I'm based in the SF Bay Area and have been to a class visitation at Haas already. However, most the schools I'm applying to are located on the East Coast/Midwest (NYU, Columbia, Cornell, Yale, Michigan). Naturally, visiting all, or even a few of them, would be a bit of a financial drain. My question is, how important is visiting the school in terms of enhancing the chances of getting in? Would not visiting the campus/sitting in on a class be viewed as a significant negative?

As long as you are not applying to Tuck, you don't need to worry too much about Campus visit. From what little I experienced with Tuck last season, they seem to consider that as a Big Deal and place an immense emphasis when it comes times to review your application. Since you are not applying to Tuck, you don't need to sweat much.

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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important? [#permalink]

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07 Jun 2008, 10:49
If you are applying to UCLA, a visit is almost mandatory if you're in the US, especially if your profile screams "Top 10". They are very careful about being used as a 'safety' school.

Berkeley encourages a visit but it's ok if you don't. Kellogg obviously doesn't care as much, nor does Stanford. But visits or speaking with students (just as good) will help you shape your essays well, so definitely try to go before your apps are due if you can.
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Re: Visiting Campuses - How Important?   [#permalink] 07 Jun 2008, 10:49

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