By Kayla Cruz ’19
The month of March is supposed to be an exciting time for the current senior class because they will be given the chance to visit their future colleges and make their final decision. Some schools offer to fly students out to campus and spend a night there, while other students would have to travel to the campus on their own. However, students are not able to explore these college campuses because of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is urging the public to “cancel or postpone events with 50 or more attendees” in hopes to stop the spread of COVID-19. This really affects students who plan on attending college visits because these visits consist of more than 50 people since they are mostly prospective students. Also, this might put students in a sticky financial situation where they already bought their tickets to visit campus and receive airline credit instead of an actual refund of their ticket.
Jacqueline Marchan, aenior, feels “uneasy about taking a virtual tour of a campus instead of actually visiting campus..
“Personally, I want that experience of seeing what the campus is like before I make a decision if I want to commit or not,” Marchan said. It is true that seniors are being cheated out of this experience because they do not know what campus is like until they make a final decision. Since quarantine is going on in the United States, by the time Marchan will be able to go on campus, she will only be able to visit a couple of campuses because she has until May 1. May 1 is National Decision Day, and seniors are expected to commit to a College by then.
On top of this anxiety of not being able to visit campuses, some seniors are not getting enough information to make their decision on what college to commit too. “The virtual tours are fine because I get the general information I already know. However, I am not able to explore the campus and see new factors that might either make or break a decision. For example, determining if the town near campus is too small or the distance between there and home,” Issac Santana, a senior, said. This is true about campus tours because not only do you see the campus yourself, but you are able to picture yourself to see whether or not this is the right place for you. This is where the virtual tours become a problem because you are not able to see the full picture.
In the end, seniors are trying to get the most they can of the virtual tours before making any decisions on where to commit too. This can be by asking questions during virtual tours of researching the school they are interested in.