A few days ago

what questions should i ask/what should i do at a university fair?

i want to get the most out of my experience. i’m entering university in a year and a half.


Top 2 Answers
A few days ago

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You are smart to want to start your research this early. University fairs are usually big, crowded events. Your goal should be to ask a few qualifying questions at each table and get a packet or brochure to take home for further investigation. (It wouldn’t hurt to take a tote bag just for this purpose.) Take a pen & mark on each brochure your initial impression, A, B, C, D, or something, to help you sort later. (It’s not to say you won’t consider a C or D school later, but you need something to help you remember impressions. And don’t feel compelled to stop at every single table. If you want to study marketing, a technical school or military school isn’t for you.) Do not limit your search to big, name schools. Smaller schools with a focus in your area of interest can be a really good deal.

The people working the fair are trying to talk to and interest as many people as they can so it won’t be possible to spend more than a few minutes with each. The questions marked with a (*) are the ones with which to start.

(*) If you have an idea of what major you want to pursue, ask if they offer a degree in that major. (Hopefully, they will also offer masters or higher in your major, showing they are committed to that field of study.) And if so, what percentage of graduates get a job right after graduation? What sort of jobs are graduates getting with the degree you want. (The answers to these two questions can be deal breakers. If you want to pursue acting and the theatre graduates are in marketing and sales–that’s a problem.)

In the degree program you are considering, what is the starting salary for most graduates?

(*)What is the teacher/student ratio? If it is a high number, you are less likely to get individual attention when you need it.

(*)What percentage of the undergraduate classes are taught by grad students/teaching assistants vs. professors? In some big schools, especially big state schools, you may not have a class taught by a full professor until you are a junior or senior. The upside is that these schools will cost less, the downside is potentially less qualified instruction. (Professors have to learn to be professors somehow, but you should know what you are buying. And let’s be clear here, YOU ARE BUYING an education. You want to get the best value for your money, time and effort.)

(*)What is average tuition per semester or per year?

(*)What percentage of students get financial assistance? And what is the average size assistance package?

(*)How many students are enrolled? How many of the students are undergraduates and how many are graduates? (Some schools are better known and put more resources into their graduate schools. If more than half of the student body is graduate, you might want to investigate further.)

(*)Do they have an active alumni association? This might sound like an odd question, but alums who are big fans of their school, are big fans of their graduates and are a HUGE resource for work internships and jobs after graduation.

Does the school have a job placement center and what percentage of students do they help find work?

If you are not familar with the town/city where the school is located, ask what size place it is and what’s the nearest big city. What sort of recreational options are available? If you are an avid hiker/climber, a big city school in the middle of the plains will not offer you many opportunties to do something you love.

When you get home, you can sort packets geographically or private school vs. public school, or big school vs. small school, what ever filters are important to you. Go ahead and eliminate any that don’t seem like a good fit.

Read the material in the brochures and read between the lines. All of them are going to be positive and glowing and many of them will have similar language, but notice what they tout as their biggest strengths. These are the sorts of things you should be looking for to check against your wish list for schools. Small class size? International student body? School doing research for big corporations? National rankings in your field of study? Look for what is important to you.

Make notes about the things you like and don’t like about each school and clip the notes to the brochure and figure out some sort of filing system, like an expanding file.

Visit the school websites and add to your notes.

If there are particular companies or industries you are interested in, do research from that end. Want to go into journalism/newscasting? Contact major market TV stations and newspapers and ask what schools they are hiring from.

Interested in hotel management? Call several of the big chains and ask the same question and so on.

When you can start to winnow down the list, start planning school visits. Try to see several at a time in whatever region you travel each time. All the schools will offer tours, but if you call ahead, ask if you can talk to a couple of students who are already attending and/or professors in your field of study.

School visits are the hardest and most expensive part of your research, but these should help you narrow the schools down quickly. (If you want a small town school and atmosphere, beware the school close enough to a big city that everybody goes home on the weekends, and so on.)

It may take you a year to get to this point, but that’s okay. By the time you have done this much research, you should have a really good idea of three or four directions you want to go, and these are the schools to which you should apply. Good-luck.


5 years ago
Job gala’s are quite often know-how classes. Wearing exceptional garments and sporting copies of your resume will support. As for dialogue, ask questions approximately the organization. Explain what you would cherish to do one day. And for those who’ve had a exceptional dialogue and also you consider you want an interview, ask if you’ll be able to go away a resume. Good success!