Virtual College Visits

Cece Decker, Reporter

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, there have been a lot of changes to school procedures, one of which is college visits. College visits in the past were in the media center with college representatives.

In years past, guidance has  had these representatives come into the school to present to these students with paper copies of some of the materials and answer student questions in person.

This year, in an effort to increase social distancing, guidance and college representatives have chosen to host zoom meetings. In these meetings, students meet in the media center for increased spacing. They then see a college representative on the Smartboard who can speak with them and present material virtually.

“I think there are pros to each type of visit,” said representative from Thaddeus Stevens College Samantha Weizel. “I find that with Zoom meetings it is easier to share my computer screen with a student.”

Zoom is an effective way to keep in touch with people, but it also comes with a variety of problems, as well.

Of course, due to technology issues Zoom meetings are not without volume issues, internet lag, or dialogue delay.

Since the movement to virtual meetings, students have shown less interest and numbers are low in attendance.  “On average, I have 5 to 10 students participate in these visits. Sometimes there are 0 participants,” said Weizel.

Guidance counselor Joyce Marburger agrees stating guidance has had to cancel a number of meetings this year. “College admissions representatives are finding low/no attendance to be the same at all schools not just at KDHS.”

There are a variety of potential reasons that attendance has been low.

“Over the past few years, the number of students in attendance at college visits have declined. Many of our highly academically minded students do not want to miss class. Also, in today’s virtual world, students often view a virtual tour and admissions experience day on the college website,” said Marburger.

While there are currently few attendees, there are many more visits in the future. To see who is hosting a Zoom virtual tour, see the letterboard outside of guidance. Or, you can review the calendar on the school website, located here.

All students in grades ten through twelve can attend these meetings, and should consider doing so for a variety of reasons.

“It is a good idea for 10-12 graders to attend in order to learn information about programs offered, the college atmosphere, and admissions procedures.  It is especially valuable for sophomores to begin the exploration process that can help them determine if a four year or two year college is best for them,” Marburger stated.

If you are interested in attending a meeting, please e-mail your guidance counselor. They will provide you with a pass for the correct date/time for the meet.