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Beyond the News

Weekend Visits Take Wing

University Business, November 2012

As any admissions counselor knows, a campus visit can make the difference between a student enrolling or not. While most families probably do road trips when they go on college visits, some do take to the air. Campus leaders at Hope College (Mich.) are easing the financial burden for those outside of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin by reimbursing half (up to $300) of the cost of an airline ticket for out-of-state students.

While parents are welcome to tag along, the funding is just for Junior. Costs of meals and lodging are covered as well, and students within driving range also receive that perk. “Fly-in” weekends are held in the spring and fall in coordination with planned visit days, explains Barb Grooters, office specialist in the Admissions Office. A special event is held on Thursday nights for long-distance visitors, since most of the activities take place on Friday. “We take the students on a bus to Lake Michigan and the reaction of those who have never seen one of the Great Lakes is amazing,” Grooters shares. “Often they can’t believe they are not at an ocean.”

The funding is available to the first 40 students to register who are already applied seniors. The program has been in place for several years and the yield from participating students is “very good,” says Grooters. “It’s really neat to see the places students come from,” she says. “They arrive from all over the country.”