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You hear the phone ring, your mom answers and then you get passed the phone. You say “Hello?” and your dream school’s athletic director is on the other line, inviting you for a college visit. Oh god, now what do I do?!?! Well here at Atleta, we have some great tips on how to prepare for a college visit, and what to expect when you arrive on campus. Naturally, all schools treat this process a little differently, so we are going to keep this is accurate as possible, but some may experience a slightly different visit.
How to prepare
– First and foremost, you are going to need to have some idea of what major you are aiming for. Most college programs encourage their student-athletes to take Arts or Management, but if you have other goals, you will need to talk to the school about that at your visit.
– Research the program, you are going to be asked a little about the athletic program, and the more you know the better. This would include some quick information on the titles the school has, as well as some background about the head coach and players to come out of the program
– Ensure that you have some questions about life on campus, and where you are going to live. This is where you are going to spend a lot of your time off the field!
– Research athletic specific programs, this would include tutors or any other academic programs the school offers to their athletes. This might be hard to find, so make sure to ask some questions while you are on the tour!
What to expect on your visit
– Walkthroughs are the most common thing that happens on these tours, and that will simply be a guided tour of the campus including the major points of interest such as the library, student union etc. Classes are normally stretched across the school, and you will need to conduct your own tour to make sure you know where your classes are during the first week on campus, or simply ask someone in Roots sweats.
– Next, you will normally either meet your head coach or the athletic director. This will be a quick one on one meeting to chat about your possible role on the team and some quick financials. This will naturally depend on who is in town, but you will most likely meet someone on the coaching staff.
– Then you will head off to check out the athletic facilities. This will include a tour of the locker room, field/court/arena, the varsity gym, the regular gym and any other amenities the school might have. This is going to be a sales pitch, but make sure to ask lots of questions!
– Finally, some schools will end the visit with a meetup of team members and captains that are still in town. When I was a wee freshman, the boys took me out for some evening fun, and we bonded quickly. Ensure you are going to be safe, and keep close to the captains.
A college visit is an exciting time, and these visits are not the end all be all. You are making sure the school is a good fit for you, and nothing more. Enjoy the walk, and make sure to ask any questions that might arise during your visit!
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