In a time when parents and students can access information about prospective colleges and universities on the web, what good anymore is the old-fashioned college fair?
For one, says the Black United Fund's Adrienne Livingston, you don't have the opportunity to interview with admissions officers from local schools when you're visiting their website.
This Saturday, Dec. 11, the Black United Fund will be holding a college fair from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Warner Pacific College's McGuire Auditorium, 2219 SE 68th Ave. in Portland. Registration begins at 9:45 a.m.
The free event welcomes students from middle school to high school, each with specialized areas of interest available to their age level, presented by a diverse group of college representatives and alumni. For middle school students, the BUF will be offering a campus tour of Warner Pacific and a "College 101" information class. Freshman and sophomores will receive information on how to build a "well-rounded" package that will appeal to admissions officers, as well as information on testing and accreditation. Juniors and seniors will be able to meet with representatives from a number of different schools and receive financial aid and scholarship information.
Livingston says the fair is an excellent opportunity to ask questions about school offerings, but what college life is all about on different campuses.
"A lot of students have questions about what it's like? What's it like being away from home?" she said. "When you get to a university, you are going to a different culture."
Although official representatives won't be there, many alumni from some of the nation's top Historically Black Colleges and Universities will be there, including Spelman, Tuskegee, and Langston.
With about $800,000 in scholarships available from the Black United Fund – many available to the area's many private institutions -- students will be able to scope out prospective schools before the Jan. 13 scholarship application deadline. Check out their website for a list of scholarships.
In addition to the many local schools represented at the fair – including Lewis & Clark, Oregon State, Reed, University of Portland, Willamette and others – the Black United Fund will be providing a college directory of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, which will also have a list of all scholarships available by school, geographic location, ethnicity and other requirements.
Parents are encouraged to attend with their children. Visit www.bufor.org for more information.