MANKATO — Whether they’re wondering how big class sizes are or what the dining hall has to offer, rising high school seniors Edon Davis and Joe Rossow were among dozens of prospective college students to get their questions answered during Minnesota State Week’s campus tours.
While tours are open throughout the year, Minnesota State Week, which wrapped up Friday, offered prospective students the chance to get an application fee waiver.
Visiting campus is usually a good indicator of a student’s interest in attending the university, staff said.
The campus drew students’ interests for a number of reasons during the week.
Rossow, who is interested in a sports management degree, said going to college in state would provide more flexibility.
“It’s definitely going to be easier to go home if I need to,” he said.
Like many students, Rossow was also interested in learning what the residence halls were like.
He said the renovated residential halls were an attraction during the tour.
“That really stood out. It was really good to see how nice those were,” he said.
The tour is just one step of the college application process for Rossow and Davis, who said they are both still narrowing down their choices.
Davis, who is interested in an engineering degree, also said going to college in state would be closer to home. He also added that the price of tuition would be cheaper.
He also made note of the different opportunities on the tour.
“I would say the resources and how many different options there are for things to do around campus,” he said.
Looking at classrooms, finding out about class sizes and seeing the residential halls tend to be what students and families ask most about on tour, said Director of Admissions Brian Jones.
He added that Minnesota State Week is important because students can get the gain a lot by visiting campus.
“Getting a good feel for a campus while you’re on a tour is really important for us, and I think for students … who are going to leave home for the first time, spend the next four years of their lives and take this really kind of maybe the first most important transition in their life that’s going to happen in this space. Feeling good about that is important,” he said.
Tours were fairly full during the duration of the week, Jones said, adding that July and August tend to be the busiest time of year for visitors.
Enrollment has been fairly steady during the past few years for their first-year student population, Jones said, adding that while they were unusually down in the fall of 2021, they’ve rebounded nicely in 2022.
“I think we had about a 13% increase from the fall of 2021, which was much needed,” he said. “We’re kind of back to I’d say, if you take 2021 out of it, 2019, 2020, 2022 — and now 2023 are going to be back on level.”
Anybody interested in touring campus after Minnesota State Week can visit the campus’s website.