Based on just seeing the two universities we visited today, I whole-heartedly agree to the importance of actually visiting schools that you will invest four years of your life to. I've realized that the University of Pennsylvania is an excellent fit for me. I love how the university is integrated into the city and how the buildings have a variety of designs and color schemes.
Our tour guide, Teresa, told us how college life truly is. She didn't shy away from telling us of all the parties on campus and how to survive college by taking easy classes. I appreciated her honesty.
After multiple exciting and fun train rides (my first time riding a train) and a taxi ride to Princeton, we attended an information session of the college in the Inner Sanctum. This was a gorgeous building and the inside had a very similar design of where British Parliament is held. It also had huge portraits of some of the greats of Princeton such as Woodrow Wilson. In comparison to UPenn, Princeton was made up of Gothic and Greek architecture and the campus itself was very secluded. Not really where I would want to go to school, but of course it obviously attracts students that don't want to be in an urban academic environment.
After taking more than one train back to our hotel, we were left with 15 minutes to get ready for dinner at Le Bec Fin. It was tres beautiful and very chic. I was thrilled to have dinner with Dr. June Chu (UPenn Pan-Asian American Community House, Director) and Mr. David M. Toomer (Multicultural Recruitment Program at UPenn, Director). They both were very helpful in informing us about UPenn and reinforced the fact that UPenn is a need blind/need based university. This is an important fact since UC's have increased their tuition fees by more than 30% and that UPenn hasn't even increased their tuition by 5% in recent years! It was a long, but very beneficial dinner. We made it to the hotel around midnight and I started to pack right away since we leave for NYC later this morning at 10 AM. Currently about 6½ hours away from that time. zZzZz.