Category: college tour

Advice From a Senior: How to Prep for College

This weekend I visited home and got to chat with my younger siblings and cousin about my best advice for college. As the oldest of all the cousins, I’m the first to go through the 4-year process and working in admissions means I have LOTS of advice about going to college! I decided to share some of my top tips here, too. I’ve learned a lot in four years and I hope some of this advice is of use.

  1. Take high school seriously!

Let me be clear – your GPA doesn’t define you. You are MUCH more than a grade, a score or a mark on a test. However, doing your best in school is really important. Chances are, if you give it your honest best shot, you’re going to come out with a pretty decent GPA. This is going to help when it comes time for scholarship money, and EVERYONE loves free money, right? So don’t give up after you get that first acceptance letter, because your grades matter all the way til’ the end and they could end up saving you some cash in the long run. Temple is really incredible about giving scholarships based on academic merit – you can check out the five different tiers of scholarship they offer here – and that’s JUST based on your academic performance. On top of federal aid or outside scholarships, this annual award could really help! So try your very best and turn in your best work. It’s worth the extra effort in the long run.

  1. Trust your gut.

Choosing a school is hard. It’s SO hard. When you first start looking around, you’ll feel like there are a million options with a million pros and cons. This is kind of true. There are many varied, diverse types of higher education institutions. Some colleges are urban, some are rural, others right in between. You might be one of 26,000 undergrads or one of 2,000. Your school might have tons of on campus housing, or maybe it is typical that every student lives off campus. This is just to name a few examples. My best advice here is to take a big deep breath, explore plenty of diverse options, and at the end – trust your gut reaction! I know it’s corny, but what they say is true: when you know, you know. Let me tell you a story.

When I first visited Temple’s campus, is was only because I had gotten into a school that I simply could not afford. I was interested in checking out Temple, but I was still really upset about not being able to go to the other school. Even still, when I walked down Liacouras Walk for the first time, I suddenly felt comfortable there. I looked around and saw students having lunch, chatting with friends, walking to class, and I thought…”Yeah, I can see myself in their shoes. I think I can really fit in here.” And boy, was I right. I trusted my gut and made the greatest choice I have made yet in my life. Temple opened every door for me, gave me lifelong friends, and showed me where my passions and talents truly lie. All because I went with my gut instinct! So trust yourself, and you’ll end up in the right spot.

  1. If you take an AP class, take the AP test!

This is something I didn’t do and I wish I had. If you’re already in the class anyhow, it’s definitely worth it to at least give the test a try! Those credits, if accepted at your future university, could help you graduate sooner or allow you to check off a gen-ed requirement from your list early on, which will open up room in your schedule for your major classes or other interesting electives. As long as you paid attention in class, the test should at least be something take give a shot at. Double check with your potential colleges if you’re a senior, and make sure they’ll accept the AP credits!

  1. Enjoy the process.

By the 10th college tour, you might feel a little burnt out. If you haven’t found “the one” yet, you might even feel a little discouraged. Just remember one thing – this time in your life never occurs again! Looking at schools and colleges is a unique, exploratory time in your life that you can never get back. I know this sounds silly, but you’ll look back on the process and miss it a little one day. That feeling of being right on the edge of your next big step in life, the unknown and excitement that is ahead of you – that is a beautiful thing! Even if your feet start to ache after one too many walking tours, try to smile and really take it all in. You’ll be glad you did.

Have specific questions? Let me know below! And don’t worry – college truly is the best years of your life. It’s all worth the process in the end.

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7 Real Owls that Perfectly Describe a Temple Open House

Attention, attention, attention – it is that time once again.

OPEN HOUSE SEASON HAS ARRIVED. 

That’s right folks. The fall can only mean one thing around our office, and that is preparation and excitement for some of the most exhausting but rewarding days as a tour guide.

Sunday was our first Open House of the year! I live for the hustle and bustle of our big admissions events. They are well worth all of the energy and time that gets put into them every year. I could recap it play-by-play, but I think I’d rather highlight some of the little, albeit cool/fun things that happen as a result of our admissions days. You might be surprised by some of them!

But Paige, you may ask, what’s so crazy about open houses?!

I would tell you myself, but I think my owl friends can do an even better job than me. Here is a list of some of the craziest and coolest parts of our large visit days, as told by those cute little animals we call our mascot.

1. The Owl Office is jam-packed with Tastycakes for at least two days before the event. 

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If you haven’t attended an Open House, you should know that Tastycakes and soft pretzels are a staple – we offer them to our visitors to provide a real “Taste of Philly” personally, one of my favorite Open House touches. This means our owl office is full to the brim with these delicious treats as we await the big day. We don’t break into them early, but just being surrounded by such a huge amount of sheer sugar is the perfect way to gear up.

2. Open House Days mean very, VERY early mornings.

Although the 6 AM alarm is one of the hardest parts of the day, once we’re all away and coffee is coursing through our veins, we are fired up to meet and greet all of the potential families and students who are headed to campus. The biggest shout out to our AM crew who is up even earlier than the rest of us! Getting up early means the Owls are radical at consuming coffee, as well. Are you shocked? We aren’t.

3. Open House helps us perfect the speed walk. 

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With so much going on throughout the day, not only in the Liacouras Center (where our day starts) but also ALL over campus, we’ve all gotten very good at getting places quickly without breaking a sweat. Sneakers are obviously a must. The Owl Ambassadors can thank Open House for the pep that is always in our step!

4. Open House Days just keep getting bigger and bigger!

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On Sunday, we had 4,700 visitors checking out campus – our largest yet! I don’t want to speak for everyone else, but I know this fact warms my Temple-loving heart so much. I wish EVERY prospective college student checked out Temple at least once – so to know that so many students and families attended our event makes me the happiest.

5. SOOOO many important questions are answered! 

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Yes really! One of the coolest things about Open House as compared to our other regular tours is that they are essentially a one-stop-shop to learn about literally any aspect of Temple University you can imagine. Whether you already have a working knowledge of Temple and only have a few questions or interests, or you’ve got something to ask at every information table you see – if you have visited us before, or you’ve never stepped foot on campus – Open House is such a valuable day for you. For anyone, really! I even love when I get to greet Alumni of Temple who learn something brand new they didn’t know before. Open House is an awesome way to access tons of people with all the Temple answers you need, and do it all in one day.

6. All of us look forward to big event days – they are a hoot!

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It doesn’t feel like work when it’s something you love, and all of the Owl Ambassadors, admissions staff and volunteers have one thing in common – we just really, really love Temple. We wouldn’t do what we do if we didn’t. So this makes Open House days, and other admissions events, some of the most rewarding and fun days of our year. Yes, our feet are sore and we all nap as soon as we get home. But it’s all worth it to meet and help prospective students get to know Temple just a little bit more.

7. Can’t stop, won’t stop – we aren’t done yet!

Dancing-Animals-5Sunday is over, and my feet are recovering, but we aren’t wrapped just yet – we’ve got another Open House lined up for the fall on November 8th. If you are interested in seeing some of these things come to life, or you’d just like to see what all the owl hype is really about, register for the next Open House by clicking here.  It’s worth a visit – and how can you say no to all of these adorable little pals?!

Hats off to everyone who was a part of the success that came yesterday from our first Open House of the school year, and I can’t wait to do it again!

[gifs and images courtesy of giphy.com]