Jul   2012



Private College Week


Tags: admissions, private universities, private colleges, college admissions, Private School Week

Assistant Editor, Wintergreen Orchard House

When it comes to colleges, there are a few options as to what type of institution you may want to attend: there are community colleges, trade schools, for-profit schools, public universities, and then private institutions. Private colleges do not get funding from the state they are located in; instead, their funding comes from private investors, donors, and the tuition you pay. A private school does not always mean more money—one great advantage is that the tuition is the same whether you reside in the state the school is located in or if you come from out-of-state. Wisconsin, Minnesota, Indiana, Iowa, and Virginia participate in Private College Week.

These states choose a week during the summer to hold this event; not all private colleges within in the state participate, but a good amount do. A simple Google search for private college week will bring you to the information you need to see what schools take part in this event. The requirements to attend can vary; some schools require you to call their admission office in order to register, but schools in Virginia do it a little differently. You’ll receive a passport that the schools will stamp for you after you take a campus tour to prove that you participated in the event. If you visit three different private colleges during this week, Virginia will waive your application fee for three private schools, even if you didn’t tour the school you are applying to!

What’s great about this week is that it takes place during the summer, you don’t have to miss classes to tour a campus, it’s free, and it gives you the opportunity to learn more about private institutions that you may not have considered in the first place. Many students shy away from applying to a private college because they think that it will cost more, but sometimes attending a public out-of-state school will mean more money than attending a private in-state school. And because private schools tend to provide more financial aid, it may end up being cheaper than a state school anyway! Additionally, private schools have smaller class sizes, students that are more involved on campus, and they are known for preparing their students well for a career or further education.

Each state that participates chooses a different week during the summer: Virginia’s is this week and Iowa’s is in just two weeks. Check it out and see if it may interest you!