Darthmouth College recently announced that they would be discontinuing on campus interviews. This leaves Yale as the only Ivy League college to still do on campus interviews that are considered in the admission process. Harvard also does on campus interviews but they are not considered in the admissions process.
Many colleges have discontinued on campus interviews because of a perceived bias towards those students who can afford to come to campus for the interview. I understand the argument that there is potentially bias involved but as long as the college doesn’t give preference to a student interviewing on campus compared to a student doing an alumni interview I don’t believe there is a problem.
I also believe that, for several reasons, it is to the students benefit in most cases to do an on campus interview if they are able to get to the campus. Actually setting foot on a campus provides a much better feel for a college than any description a guide book or your best friend can ever provide. The quality of the interviews also tend to be better with on campus interviews as the person doing the interview generally has more experience with such interviews and is also more subject to quality controls than an off campus interviewer. To be fair, there are some wonderful off campus interviewers but the consistency is not as great. Finally, if the student lives within a reasonable distance of the campus, it can appear odd to the admissions staff why that person would do an alumni interview rather than come to campus for an on campus interview.
If you are interested in any college, do an interview. If the college offers on campus interviews, and if you can get to campus without a great deal of cost, do the on campus interview.
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