As with open days or campus visits, meeting a university rep is an important opportunity for students to give focus and shape to their research. So whether it’s at a fair or at a school, it’s important for students to make the most of these one-to-one conversations.
Research is vital
University reps are often working to a very tight schedule and their time will be limited, so your students can’t expect to take these visits for granted. They need to have researched the university in question before meeting with a representative, and come up with a list of questions to ask. Some examples include:
- What programs/courses does the university offer that align with their subject interests?
- What are housing/accommodation options like for undergraduates?
- What’s the social life like on campus?
- What’s the surrounding town/city/wider area like? If it’s a campus based university, what are transport links like?
- What makes this university unique?
- What does this university look for in prospective students?
Not only is a university rep going to be more impressed by students who are already engaged with the process, these questions will also inform any reflections that students may have after the visit is over.
First impressions are everything
It’s important to impress on students that a visit from, or meeting with, a college rep can help to form a university’s first impression of them as a candidate. So students should make sure that they are authentic and professional in how they present themselves. Little details like a firm handshake, plenty of eye contact and punctuality make a big difference.
As we’ve already covered, talking to a university admissions rep can be a way of making the subsequent application process seem less impersonal and unwieldy. It can be a valuable boost to your students’ confidence if they feel like there’s someone at a university they can both talk to, and correspond with.
Encourage them to follow up with university reps after a face-to-face meeting or talk, be that via email, Skype or phone. This is another way to give their university shortlisting more focus, because they will have opened up a dialogue with a university rep who can offer them relevant and personalised guidance. What’s more, university reps are on the record saying that they want students to feel comfortable in contacting them after (or instead of) a visit.