I'm Visiting Your High School -- Why You Should Come and Say Hi
September 12, 2022
Josh Levy ’94, Office of Admissions
I'm heading out for my first more-than-a-quick-drive-to-Cleveland recruiting trip of the year so I thought you might want to know a bit about what is involved. Why do we travel to you? What is a typical visit like? What can you do if I'm not visiting your high school?
Why do we travel?
Every college wants to tell you, the students, how great we are. When students visit us, we offer them an information session and a tour to learn about Oberlin. They interact with students and can ask them all sorts of questions. Sometimes students attend a virtual information session. While this is mostly a presentation, there is time for the students to ask questions of current Obies.
You can meet the Admissions counselor who reads your application. If you visit campus, there's no guarantee they'll be there. If you go to the visit at your high school, you can meet us and see that there is a real person behind this mystical admissions process.
You can learn about Oberlin in an intimate setting. The average number of students I see at a high school visits is in the range of 5. I can tailor sessions directly to your interests; in fact, most of my sessions start off with, "What can I tell you about Oberlin?" I want you to be the focus of the session so that you make the most out of your time.
What is a typical high school visit like?
Ah, that's a trick question. There is no typical high school visit. It totally depends on what the students want to know.
As I said above, I want to tailor the visit to your interests. If you want to hear me talk for 30 minutes, I can do that but it will be boring. I'd rather you tell me about your academic interests or your extracurricular passions -- that way, I can tell you what Oberlin has to offer in these areas.
I try to spend at least 30 minutes at a high school. I usually say hello to a counselor before meeting with the students. My time with the students runs upwards of 25 minutes, depending on how many questions people have. Sometimes a counselor will sit in and ask other, more "official," questions -- that's great too.
You're not visiting my high school -- what can I do?
Our Admissions staff typically spend between 4 and 6 weeks on the road in the fall. I will be spending 10 days in Massachusetts and another 10 days in northern Ohio. There are many more high schools in those areas than I can possibly visit so I do my best to visit high schools where we traditionally see students who ultimately apply and enroll. We also try to visit new high schools (to us) or schools where we aren't plugging Oberlin but instead help reinforce information about the college search and application process.
In the end, we simply can't visit every school we want. If you attend one of those schools and you want to learn more about Oberlin, you can:
Email me. Maybe I have time after visits are done for a day and can meet you somewhere to talk.
See me at another high school. If you really want to see me at a high school, you can contact a different school and ask if they would permit you to come to the visit. Please know that I don't have any say in this -- if the high school is OK with your attending, I am too. If the high school won't let in visitors, I can't persuade them otherwise. Which takes you back to "email me."
We love traveling and speaking to you in your high school. It's not just the frequent flier miles or the hotel points or the candy and granola bars that we get from high schools (that too often are our lunch). It really is speaking to you in a smaller setting and helping you see how and why Oberlin could be the perfect place for you.