As I sit here thinking about how to start this particular blog, my lips are slowly curving to form a smile. I’m reminiscing on all the good times that I enjoyed as I was going through the college search process my senior year of high school. Beyond the stress of researching universities and colleges, filling out applications, applying for financial aid, and actually studying or doing homework to be able to even go to college, was the excitement of visiting college campuses. During the spring semester of my senior year, I felt like I missed more days of school to go visit schools than I did actually going at to school!

When it was all said and done, I visited seven or more schools all throughout the south and along the east coast. I saw places I’d only maybe seen in movies like Philadelphia, Boston, Nashville, and so many more! I met people from all over the country (and Puerto Rico) that came from similar backgrounds and others that might as well have come from a different planet. But all in all I enjoyed the people I came in contact with on the campuses. From the professors, faculty members, current students, and even other prospective students. My time spent on these campuses and the experiences I took with me when I left really shaped my selection process and ultimately led me to where I am today.

If you have the opportunity, time, and can make the financial sacrifice, definitely go visit the schools that are on your list. Sometimes – at least in my own experience – visiting campuses can move your top choices to your last resort and one of your “backups” to where you put all your bets. To me, selecting a college is like buying car. You can look up a car’s features, it’s perks, what it has over another make or model, or even read and listen to others’ reviews but you won’t know if it’s the right car for you until you drive it. Take some colleges for a test drive; go visit!