Parent College Coach Tip #83: Don’t Judge a College by the Brochure

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College brochures are marketing materials—first and foremost.

Don’t be fooled by the clever college marketing. Students in these brochures dress smartly, smile perfectly and are tall and thin. Their surroundings are beautifully groomed campuses with updated dorms and never a cloud in the sky. The architecture is often the focal point in these brochures along with grassy lawns, flowers galore and shimmering ponds.

You can’t judge by the brochure. The key aspects your student should use to judge a college is a personal visit and speaking to other students who attend. Without this key information it will be impossible to make an informed college choice.

All the flashy brochures in the world can’t communicate the feeling a student gets when he sets foot on college or talks with another student about what they love about the school.

Every college has its negative points—these are points they don’t list in the brochures. And why would they? Colleges use these brochures to put their best foot forward and it’s up to you to look beyond the glitz and glamour and get to the meat of what matters: a good fit for your student.

Author: Suzanne Shaffer

Suzanne Shaffer advises parents and students in the college admissions process and the importance of early college preparation at ParentsCountdowntoCollegeCoach.com. She is excited to share her knowledge with the readers of Smart College Visit.

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