Though there are never huge banners to announce the arrival of prospective students, it only takes one glance at a name tag or a new, nervous face for a current student to realize it is a prospectives day.
“I didn’t even know it was preview day until someone was like, ‘Wow, that’s a lot of people,'” sophomore James Foster said.
Although preview day does not impact student life very much, according to several students, many believe preview day to be helpful to the high school students who attend.
“It’s very beneficial for them to see professors and staff, see how students do things,” first-year Matt Wilcox said.
Prospective student and high school senior Jared Stolzfus agreed.
“I wanted to actually see the campus for myself,” Stolzfus said. “Not just talk to people about it.”
It was the friendly people who Stolzfus met during his visit that helped to heighten his interest in the university.
Many current students, whether or not they attended a preview day, said they were attracted by the beautiful campus, and, like Stolzfus, by Eastern’s atmosphere. “I felt it was a warm and inviting environment,” junior Katie Friend said. “People said ‘hi’ to me everywhere I went.”
“That was my main thing,” Friend said. “[People were showing they were] really Christian, not just saying they were affiliated with some religion.”
Friend was initially attracted to Eastern because of its inviting atmosphere, but now appreciates the freedom it gives its students.
“We’re allowed to develop our own personal habits, our own spiritual habits, without a lot of regulations,” she said.
Some of the former prospective students’ initial impressions of the university have changed. This was the case for sophomore Jonathan Ramsay.
“There are problems with parking and vandalism that I never thought of as happening here, yet it does,” Ramsay said.
For Wilcox, it was only the food which seemed to change; he remembered enjoying his “really good” meal on the preview day he attended.
“We get the better lunches [when prospectives come], so that’s a huge, huge benefit,” he said.
It was Eastern’s Christian commitment that struck junior Clarabelle Cipriano the most when she came to visit.
Cipriano found that preview day gives Eastern students a fresh perspective.
“It forces you to look at the good aspects of Eastern, which there are a lot of,” she said. “We focus too much on the negative aspects while we’re here.”
Preview day also offers many Eastern students a chance to reminisce about their college hunting days.
“I think it’s cool to have a lot of visitors,” Foster said. “It reminds me of when I was young and indecisive.”
Preview days stats and schedule
Students who attended 2/21 preview day:75
Students on 2/21 who have already applied to Eastern for the fall of 2005:32
Students who entered Eastern last fall who attended a preview day last year: 133
Preview days each year:7 (4 in the fall, 3 in the spring)
Tours on a preview day:20 (approximately)
The last two preview days this spring are on March 19 and April 4.
Duration of preview days:8 a.m.-2 p.m. every preview day that falls on a Monday9 a.m. start time for every preview day that falls on a Saturday
Typical preview day schedule
8 a.m. Registration
8:15 a.m. Worship
8:30 a.m. Meet admissions staff and welcome address from President Black
9:00 a.m. Campus tours
10:15 a.m. Greetings from an EU professor
11:00 a.m. Optional Events:lunch, college timeline, financial aid seminar, observatory or classroom observation
12 p.m. Optional Events:lunch, athletics, financial aid seminar, Christian life opportunities, leadership/honors college or classroom observation
1 p.m. Optional Events:lunch, department overviews, admissions counselor meetings or classroom observation
2 p.m. Optional Events:admissions counselor meetings or classroom observation
Statistics courtesy of Mike Dziedziak, schedule adapted from www.eastern.edu Information compiled by Ruth Robinson, features editor