Recently, I have had the privilege to collaborate with Daytripper University, a site that focuses on the ‘musts’ and ‘wants’ for families planning college campus visits.
Founded two years ago by co-owners Bonnie Klein and Liora Yalof, co-developers of Daytripper365, a site that curates travel itineraries, Daytripper University has deployed a network: parents, college students, prospective students, counselors, and Bonnie and Liora themselves, to get the true stories behind college campuses and communities across our country.
Daytripper University helps college-bound students and their families gather information to plan college campus visits and check out accommodations, transportation, places to eat, local attractions on and off campus, and more. “Research is essential,” says Bonnie. “It’s important to map out a travel plan and to book your tours online in advance.”
View any of the school profiles on the site, and you will find live videos and quotes from students in addition to the information that you ned to plan your itinerary. Bonnie and Liora continually recruit students to be Daytripper Ambassadors to contribute original content as well as complimentary itineraries. “We believe many families rush through their tours, cramming in too many visits in just a few days,” says Bonnie. “Just as important as the official tour and information session, we believe the ‘after tour’ is where your child gets a gut feeling about each school. Spend time on campus whether engaging with students, grabbing a coffee in the student center, eating in the dining hall and equally important–exploring the surrounding neighborhood. After all, this may be your child’s home for the next four years,” she adds.
Bonnie and Liora created the site not only to help make the campus visit an information gathering expedition, but also to let it become a ‘bonding experience’ between parents and students. “College towns are fun, and we encourage families to look at visits as a mini-vacation,” Liora told Westchester magazine. “Our guides lend themselves to group participation and planning: ‘Let’s visit the Farmer’s Market in Ithaca, or we must stop at Diddy Riese for an ice cream sandwich near UCLA’ to ‘I’d love to hike the Freedom Trail in Boston.’ Long after the tours, your child will remember your time together spent on the road,” she said.
Bonnie, Liora, their social network and Ambassadors raise an important consideration for college-bound students and their families: do you want your child to go to a school that everyone will want to return to visit, even after your child has graduated? Many families repeatedly return to campus for culture, entertainment, social events and sports for generations, and many college communities welcome and accommodate them quite willingly. Daytripper University profiles many schools that can become repeat travel destinations for students and their families after deposit day, but also many that might not be after graduation day. The site offers an opportunity to compare schools in this way, something most other college sites do not.
Bonnie and Liora offer a much-needed resource that could become more resourceful in the near future. Bookmark this site and sign up for their newsletter before you plan your next campus visit. I’ll be linking to them for several of my visits, too.
Need help in building your college lists, and in comparing schools? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 609-406-0062.
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