Christopher Linton


Making the right impression is key for an athlete hoping to join a professional sports team. And when it comes to ensuring they WOW their potential coaches, nothing can be as big an opportunity as an official visit. These face-to-face meetings with staff allow athletes to showcase their skills and how well they will fit in with team philosophies and culture—all of which could influence whether or not they will get signed on. With so much on the line, understanding how best to perform in these visits can help athletes set themselves up for success and increase their chances of being chosen over other candidates. I, Christopher Linton of Alabama, will discuss the importance of making a great first impression through official visits and provide tips on how to ace yours.

Understand the Importance of Scheduling an Official Visit

Scheduling an official visit to a college or university is an important step in the college application process, as it allows you to get a real sense of what campus life would be like if you were to attend. But don’t simply show up without knowing what you want from the visit. Take some time beforehand to think about what you hope to learn and experience while you’re there. Do you want to meet with professors in your intended major? Tour-specific facilities or buildings? Get a sense of the campus culture and community. Having a plan in mind will make your visit more productive and allow you to make a more informed decision about whether or not the school is a good fit for you.

Consider the Impact the Host School can Have on Being Selected 

Being selected by a host school can be competitive and challenging. One often overlooked factor that can greatly impact your chances of being selected is the type of host school you choose to apply to. While all host schools offer unique opportunities and experiences, some may be more welcoming and accommodating to international students than others. It is important to carefully research potential host schools and consider their cultural diversity, language programs, and community support. A school that actively promotes cultural exchange and values international students can greatly increase your chances of being selected and provide an enriching cultural experience.

Research How to Make a Good Impression during the Official Visit 

First impressions are crucial, especially during an official visit. To make a good impression, dressing is key. Dressing professionally can help demonstrate respect and indicate that you have put some effort into the visit. Being courteous towards everyone you encounter is also essential. Whether greeting your host with a warm smile or holding the door open for someone, these small gestures can show you are considerate and thoughtful. Lastly, asking thoughtful questions can help you gather valuable information and demonstrate your genuine interest in the visit. Remember, making a good impression is about showcasing your best version.

Know which Coaches and Faculty Members to Meet

Visiting a college campus can be overwhelming – there’s so much to see and do! But it’s important to remember that one of the main reasons for your visit is to learn more about the school and what it offers. That’s why it’s crucial to identify which coaches and faculty members you want to meet with beforehand and prepare thoughtful questions for each of them. Take advantage of this opportunity to learn as much as possible about your potential future school and make the most of your visit!

Follow Up After the Visit by Sending a Thank-You Note

Leaving a lasting impression after a visit can lead to securing your spot in a program. One way to do this is by sending a thank-you note to show appreciation for the time and effort spent on the visit. However, take it further by expressing your continued enthusiasm for the program. Letting the organizers know you are still interested and willing to work can set you apart from other candidates. Plus, it shows you are committed and dedicated to participating in the program. A simple note can go a long way in leaving a positive impression; who knows, it might just be the deciding factor in the selection process.

Understand How to Evaluate if the School is a Good Fit for You

Choosing the right school is a big decision with many factors to consider. Academics are crucial, but there are other things to take into account as well. For example, do you want a school with a strong athletics program? How important is the location to you? These factors can influence whether or not a particular school is a good fit for you. It’s important to be thorough and consider all the options before deciding. Ultimately, finding the school that best fits you can help set you up for academic and personal success.

Final Thoughts

Don’t forget to make the most of your official visit. Do your research and prep work beforehand so your visit will run smoothly and ensure you get the information you need to decide if the school is a good fit for you. It is important to ask questions during the visit and follow up with thank-you notes and other connections once it is over. As with any major decision, do not rush without considering all topics, from academics to athletics. Though the process can seem daunting at first, taking the right steps to find out what will best fit you in terms of education and athletics will ensure that each college visit serves its purpose – making an informed decision about attending a new school!