What Happens on the College Visit


Apparently a significant number of high school students on college visits are “engaging in potentially dangerous or illegal behavior,” according to a survey released earlier this week by Susquehanna University. The press release explains:

High school juniors and seniors sometimes get more than a campus tour on college visits, suggests a new national survey by the Center for Adolescent Research and Education (CARE) at Susquehanna University and SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions).

Roughly one in six surveyed teens (16 percent) who had been on an overnight college admissions visit reported drinking alcohol during the visit. Teens also reported engaging in sex or other intimate sexual behavior (17 percent), using drugs other than alcohol (5 percent) or driving while impaired (2 percent) during their overnight college visit.

Well, obviously. Students visit college to see what it’s like. Frankly a 16 percent drinking rate looks pretty good to me.

About half of the drinking teens, however, indicated that the college visit was the first time they’d had alcohol, which does look a little disturbing.

There was no indication about whether or not the drinking or drug use played a role in the students’ decisions to eventually attend the university.

That might be interesting for institutions to figure out, since the reason for the visit is to help students decide if they want to attend. How much do their behaviors on campus impact that decision? [Image via]

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Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer