Maggie Schuyler joined Georgia Highlands College as its new director of admissions just in time to help her admissions team launch its revamped campus tour program.
All five GHC campuses across northwest Georgia will begin a new program called Charger Tours to allow prospective students to get a feel for what life at the college would be like and to discover what it has to offer.
"One of the most common factors when deciding where a prospective student will attend college is the campus tour," said Schuyler, who was the assistant director of admissions at Middle Georgia State University before coming to GHC. "It is an exciting part of the college search process. Students want to get a glimpse of the place where they may spend the next years of their life. It’s a big deal."
Senior Admissions Counselor Maggie Jackson said the admissions team "felt that a structured tour program would serve the community best."
"High school counselors, parents and students appreciate a convenient method to view dates and register," she said. "It allows the admissions counselors to spend more quality time in the community, at high schools and meeting with students without eliminating any personability of a college tour."
Jackson said GHC's "noteworthy growth" over the past few years created the need for a tour program.
"We needed a more efficient way to accommodate the growing number of individual tour requests without depreciating the personal experience," she said. "We also noticed that groups of friends and high school groups were seeking tours for the same day and time. This small-group tour format was piloted at the Cartersville location in spring 2018."
The small size of the tour group — 15 guests for the Cartersville and Floyd campuses and less for the Marietta, Dallas and Douglasville sites — is a “great way to get an intimate look at GHC,” Jackson said.
“We keep the maximum registration numbers low enough to allow for quality, one-on-one interactions,” she said. “We hope that each potential student leaves feeling how excited we would be to include them in our GHC family.”
Each tour — which lasts an hour to 90 minutes, depending on the site — will begin with the college's “Taking Charge” video and a brief admissions presentation, followed by a current student guiding participants on a tour that gives them an "insider look" at their chosen campus, Jackson said.
"They will not only tour the facilities but [will] see classes in session and faculty in action," she said. "They will see students hanging out in the student center, working out in the gym, studying in the library, working in the tutorial center and receiving assistance from staff such as advisers and career counselors. Guests will be able to picture their daily life at GHC."
Prospective students can schedule a tour of the Cartersville campus for Wednesday at 10 a.m.; Thursday, Aug. 23, at 4 p.m.; Tuesday, Sept. 4, at 10 a.m.; and Thursday, Sept. 13, at 4 p.m.
They should fill out the registration form at visit.highlands.edu to pick the campus and date they want to visit and to receive parking and sign-in instructions. Registration is open until all slots are filled.
The college's new admissions director, who will have offices on the Floyd and Cartersville campuses, graduated from Georgia Southern University with a master’s degree in higher education administration.
A native of Moultrie, Schuyler has more than 10 years of higher education experience under her belt.