If you ask a current student what goes through their mind when it comes to visit days hosted by St. Olaf Admissions, you’ll receive mixed reactions. Regardless, one thing is for sure – we all understand the struggle of looking for the right college and the simultaneous importance of visiting colleges during the application process. We want to support prospective students in any way we can, and so does the College. To help prospective students (lovingly called “prospies” by hip college students) better understand St. Olaf’s campus, Admissions holds multiple visit days scattered throughout the year, as well as themed days like Buntrock Scholars Day and Fine Arts Day. These days come with their quirks, like tour groups wandering around campus and freakishly long lines at Stav Hall.
“The truth is that the busyness created by tour groups and prospective students is not that big of a deal.” – Kholood Mo’allim ’22
The people of St. Olaf Admissions aren’t the only ones who get caught up in the hustle and bustle of these visit days. Current students get caught in the rush, too. Because of the noise and bustle created by these tour groups on such a small campus, some students get a little frustrated. I can understand that, but think this topic merits further reflection.
Applying to colleges is annoying and tedious and time-consuming. I’d argue a lot of the students who come to campus for visits are just as tired out of their minds as the rest of us. But, despite all of this, visiting college campuses makes the college application process so much easier because you can discover whether or not you’d like to spend four years at once place or another. I remember applying to schools, visiting them and then knowing immediately afterward if I could see myself attending that college or university in particular.
The truth is that the busyness created by tour groups is not that big of a deal. It can get tedious and annoying for a number of current students, but it’s only a few days out of the year that such massive visits happen. And on those days, visiting students leave with a greater sense of clarity regarding where they might want to go in the future. I think we should respect that.
Kholood Mo’allim ’22 (firstname.lastname@example.org) is from Eden Prairie, Minn. Her major is undecided.