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Prospective Students Visiting Colleges in Droves

A recent survey by the National Association for College Admission Counseling showed that nearly 75% of colleges polled reported an increase in visits from prospective students last year. For these families, a single out-of-state trip can easily cost hundreds of dollars or more in related travel expenses. Also, many families visit several institutions sometimes more than once. Now, two industry leaders have collaborated to help families make the most of each campus visit.

Peterson’s, the renowned education information company, and Rand McNally, the leading travel authority, have just introduced “Peterson’s Guide to College Visits”. The new guide spotlights nearly 500 institutions -- identified by Peterson’s as attracting the most applicants and out-of-state students--and includes a special edition of Rand McNally’s Tripmaker CD for travel management to any U.S. college or university. Together, the book and software enable families to successfully and efficiently plan, navigate and conduct their college visits.

The guide features thorough college profiles and campus visiting information (including schedules, types of tours and visiting policies) and provides practical advice for making trips as productive as possible, such as creating a visiting strategy, assessing the true character of a school, and organizing and evaluating gathered information.

“College Visits” also offers advice on customizing a college visit so a student can gain insight and gather information on particular areas of interest. Suggestions include attending a sports team practice, meeting with a professor in a certain area of study, and sitting in on classes. In addition, it provides answers to such commonly asked questions as:
What are the most important questions to ask when touring a college?
When is the best time to schedule visits?
Where do you look for the true safety information on a college?

Rand McNally’s TripMaker CD is a comprehensive travel planning package, complete with point-to-point maps, route planning,and driving instructions to U.S. colleges or universities, plus information about lodging, restaurants, and local sights.

According to “College Visits”, contributing editor Dawn Sova, Ph.D., the college visit is a critical factor in the selection process: “No matter what anyone may tell students about a college and its surroundings, they can only determine what feels right for them through a visit.” Sova, an adjunct English professor at Montclair State University in New Jersey, went through the college visit process herself several years ago while helping her son choose a college. “It’s vital that students are prepared to ask the right questions to be able to fully evaluate firsthand how closely a college matches their specific set of requirements,” she added. “Peterson’s Guide to College Visits” is available at local book stores or by calling 800-338-3282.

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