Posted: Monday, April 24, 2017
During Greenville County Schools Spring Break Berea High School students and staff went on a “Bulldog R.U.N.” R.U.N. stood for ‘Reaching Underclassmen Now.” School administrators reached out to juniors and select sophomores with at least a 3.0 GPA and invited them on a three-day, two-night trip to visit six colleges and universities across the state. During visits to USC Upstate, Wofford College, College of Charleston, The Citadel, Claflin University, and Newberry College, students were able to get a glimpse of what college is all about and gain a better perspective on where they would want to attend.
Learn more about the trip from chaperone and Berea High Freshman Assistant Principal Allison Peake:
I truly believe that one of the most important and impactful activities for high school students is the opportunity to visit colleges. In selecting which college or university to attend, many students choose a school that is close, well-known, or who gives them the most in scholarship money without truly investigating if that school is the right fit. The opportunity of visiting colleges helps our students to see first and foremost what is out there – public, private, large, small, liberal arts or a historically black institution. It gives them options and helps them find the best fit for them. There are many reasons why a trip like this is important, here are just a few:
- FIRST, it provides them a first-hand experience to see the school, not just from a brochure, but inside a classroom, a dorm hall, or the cafeteria. It provides the students a sense of what is happening on campus and to listen to their own intuition about whether that institution will suit their personal and academic goals.
- SECOND, a visit on campus shows admissions officers that students have ‘demonstrated interest.” Colleges and universities look to see what students have done to show they want to attend their school. A conversation with an admissions officer also gives a platform for students to begin asking about financial aid packages or scholarships that may be available to them. When some of those decisions are made, admissions staff are able to put a face to the name applying for them.
- THIRD, part of the admissions process also many times involves writing an essay. A college visit will help the student tremendously when asked to answer the question “Why us?”
As a high poverty school, our students do not have the financial means to engage in many of the activities that students at other high schools do. The opportunity to visit colleges is one of the most important and impactful on their immediate future. Simply put, the importance of a college visit cannot be underrated. This is especially true for the students at Berea High School. We were so excited to offer them this opportunity and the trip was fabulous!