By: Mia Myklebust
One of the most crucial parts of deciding where you want to apply to and attend college is the college visit. It is one thing to imagine what the college will be like and how it will feel when you’re there, and it’s quite another to see and feel it yourself.
If you’re applying in-state, visiting the school is do-able, however, if your dream college is farther away and your family has limited resources, visiting can be difficult. You have to factor in flight costs, cabs and buses, housing and dining. It’s a big commitment, especially if you get to the school and it’s not all you imagined it would be.
Fly-in programs were created to make visiting an option for interested potential students.
There are several different types of programs that colleges offer. Some colleges will pay for all expenses related to a visit. The opportunities provided can include living in the dorms, attending a class, speaking with an advisor, taking a tour and visiting with student groups.
This all might sound too good to be true, but there is a catch. Schools won’t sponsor just anyone to come to visit. Often the school will pick up the cost for a limited number of students who exhibit strong academic or leadership potential and/or meet certain diversity goals the school has. Most programs require an application, which the college will use to help them determine who will receive invitations.
Applicants are often asked to submit transcripts, a letter of recommendation, an essay and sometimes a counselor recommendation. It’s a good idea to research these programs during your Junior year of high school. Most programs take place during the fall of Senior year.
To find out if the schools on your list have Fly-in programs, go to you CollegeMapper college list and view each of your school’s individual college pages. On the page click on the “Diversity” tab, if the school has a Fly-in program it will be listed here! Once you know that your school has a program, contact your admissions representative and they will point you in the direction of the application. Oftentimes schools do not advertise fly-in programs, but they do have them!
To search for colleges with fly-in programs use our College Search and select “open house/fly-in” under the Diversity tab on the left side of the page.
Good luck and yay, college!