Observer

ECC College Night and the benefits of attending college fairs

Just+a+few+booths+for+Elgin+Community+College%27s+annual+State+University+Transfer+Day+giving+out+information+about+their+school.+
Just a few booths for Elgin Community College's annual State University Transfer Day giving out information about their school.

Just a few booths for Elgin Community College's annual State University Transfer Day giving out information about their school.

Kristen Flojo

Kristen Flojo

Just a few booths for Elgin Community College's annual State University Transfer Day giving out information about their school.

Al Tuider, Staff Writer

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On Tuesday, Oct. 2 Elgin Community College hosted two separate college events for students planning on transferring to a four-year university as well as any high school students deciding on their future. Early in the day, ECC had Illinois schools come to campus for current Spartans to visit one-on-one with in-state school representatives.

In the Events Center in building J from 6-8 p.m., over 100 colleges and their representatives gathered for the annual college fair to help students make their next step. Multiple representatives explained why going to college fairs benefits students more than trying to find the information online.

“You get to ask reps firsthand,” said Colin Kalmes, admissions counselor for Knox College. “When you read something on that website, it’s going to be the same thing every single time you read it. When you get to talk to somebody [in person], you get the real thing. We can’t lie to you about a program. We can get you the information you need to know that you might have a hard time finding on a website.”

Most of the reps were in their mid-20s, so it was very easy to talk to and relate with what they were saying. A great example was meeting Kimberly Palsgrove, a nursing admissions counselor at George Williams College.

“When students are able to have that face-to-face connection, it makes for a friendlier and more open [environment],” Palsgrove said. “It’s not just a piece of paper or a picture on the internet, it’s an actual person talking to you that can answer any question that you want to know.”

Not only were the reps very knowledgeable, but they were also extremely persuasive in convincing you on why their college would be the best fit for you versus other colleges. Adam Britten, a regional recruitment specialist for the University of Nebraska, was able to talk about how his own personal experiences helped him explain to students why his school is the best choice for them.

“Since I’m an alum, I’m able to share my own perspective on my experience,” Britten said. “I really try to encourage students to start their own story and have a clean slate at college. We really encourage campus visits and being able to talk more in-depth about the programs.”

The gym was very hot and loud with students rapidly flowing in and out. As students stepped out to take a breath, they were willing to share their experience. Samantha Mead, a second-year student at ECC, talked about how she benefited from College Night.

“I’m going into the nursing program at ECC, and I will be getting my RN, so I was looking for schools that offer an RN to BSN program,” Mead said. “This is my second time coming to College Night at ECC, and it seems that every time I come, I receive even more information than the last time. Northern Illinois University and the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh have been here both years, and they both gave me helpful information to help me make my decision.”

Overall, it seems that College Night ended up proving very beneficial for students in many different ways. It could even be extended an hour for it to be less hectic and offer more time for students to explore all the colleges that they wish to speak to.

About the Writer
Al Tuider, Staff Writer

This is my second year here at Elgin Community College. My major is broadcast journalism which led to my interest in joining The Observer.

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ECC College Night and the benefits of attending college fairs