PTC has such a positive effect on me ever since my first college tour with the organization! I went on the tour as a high school student and it gave me incredible insight into how the feel of a campus can really have an impact on a student’s well-being. Years later, when I helped chaperone a group of students on their college tour, listening to them and sharing their enthusiasm for PTC’s Tour made me reflect fondly on my own experience. Via a variety of educational activities, PTC helps guide youth towards the college/university that meets their needs!
Passports to College allowed me the opportunity to tour colleges and universities in the Northeast region of the United States—something I never thought I would have the opportunity to do. As a native Texan, I was indoctrinated into thinking that I would end up attending a school in the Lone Star State. However, I had always loved to travel; I had always loved meeting new people, trying new things, experiencing new cultures, and learning about people, things, and cultures different than my own. PTC was the medium through which I was able to experience the aforementioned cultural differences in the Eastern and Midwestern regions of the United States, and consider whether I wanted to make one of them my home for my four life-changing years. Through PTC I was able to tour 16 schools from Massachusetts to Maryland, from Virginia to Missouri, and while the former were all quite enticing, I ultimately chose the latter as my experience—the experience that has allowed me to meet friends from all over the world; the experience that has allowed me to meet ambassadors, scholars, experts, and radical catalysts for change; the experience that has allowed me the opportunity to represent my school in our nation’s capital as a National Security Fellow; these experiences have truly changed my life for the better. And, honestly, none of this would have been possible without Passports to College.
Sydney Franklin, Class of 2018
Security Studies Major (Emphasis in National Security)
Passports to College was an invaluable tool for my daughter when we were trying to choose a College. She had the opportunity to travel outside of Texas, and see institutions that she otherwise may not have seen but for the Passports to College Tour.
The interaction that they provided at each College gave her time to ask questions, and see campuses both large and small. She was able to meet other peers experiencing the same decisions; and share ideas while soaking in information that would later help her choose a College outside of Texas.
I wish all High School students could have the opportunity to tour with Passports to College.
Passports to College offered me my first opportunity to picture myself as a thread in the fabric of American college life. Embarking on the tour as a freshman in high school, I knew that I wanted to attend college someday, and I knew that I would work hard throughout high school to get there, but prior to my Passports to College experience, college was still an abstract concept. The tour made that abstract concept real to me. I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to partake in the east-coast tour and visit such a diverse selection of universities and that ranged from household names to places I hadn’t yet heard of. The chance to visit HBCUs, Ivy-League schools, large state schools, and small private college schools showed me that there was more variety than I could have ever imagined; it all convinced me that I could eventually matriculate to a University that would fit every criteria I was looking for. While I did not attend a university that we visited on my Passports to College tour, my experience and learning’s from the tour significantly influenced my college decision and made me more resolute in my final decision. In addition to everything I learned about college while on the tour, I’m also grateful for the amazing people I met on the tour. From the awesome tour staff, to my peers on the tour with me, to the many great guides and administrators we met on the campuses, I was inspired at every turn with everyone’s spirit while working to better themselves; it quickly became obvious to me how unique the PTC experience is and the thoughtful preparation from the trip planners shone through. I can confidently say that that the Passports to College tour changed my life and honed my focus toward everything I continue to work to achieve. I am forever grateful.
Prospective MBA student
Nielsen – Internal International Financial Consultant
Northwestern University ’13
PTC tour ’06
Passports To College was the first organization that introduced me to the amazing opportunities that university could bring. From a young age, PTC provided me with the tools that I needed to effectively plan for taking college entrance exams, applying to colleges, and writing high quality essays. I was able to embark on a college tour with PTC, which really opened my eyes to the wide variety of schools that were available to me, which is something I would not have had access to without the organization. With the help of PTC, I was admitted to every college that I applied to, and was able to then make an informed decision about what school would be best for me, with the knowledge that I had gained through the resources offered by the organization. Overall, PTC proved to be an invaluable resource to me as it’s focus went beyond the support you receive in high school, in terms of preparation for higher education.
Passports to College helped me to navigate the difficult time that is applying for college, and they were with me every step of the way. As a sophomore, I attended one of PTC’s college tours that allowed me to see beyond a schools profile online; and get a first hand look at its campus as well as, talk directly to the university’s students. This enabled me tackle questions that I had not previously thought of such as how large of a school did I want to attend? Did I want to go to a school in a city, suburban, or rural area? Did I want to attend a university where sports was king or a something smaller like a liberal arts college? Without Passports to College, I would not have been able to answer these questions on my own. As my junior year ended and college application season began, I joined one of the PTC SAT Workshops. The class taught me new test taking skills, and helped me to hone in on the type of information I would need to know for the test. I attribute a good portion of how well I did on the test to what I learned in the workshop. With the people at Passports to College by my side; the transition from high school to college was easier than I could have ever imagined.
Among the many things that PTC does, their college tours, delivered by their amazing team changed my daughter’s life! She benefited from their researched, well-planned and targeted college tours.
On PTC College Tours, young people who are aspiring to go to university are given the opportunity to visit colleges and universities with their own peer group. The tours are wonderfully planned, and are interactive from start to finish. They even have fun opportunities while traveling on tour for the students to remember facts about the schools they have visited. They play “college trivia” and win prizes (university mementos – for their recall) making the traveling part of the tour a fun experience, and not just a long bus-coach ride. They aim to keep students engaged and involved!
My daughter gained so much insight about the process of college selection and application requirements from being part of a tour, as university Admissions personnel always gave key overviews about their school.
Each tour is so diverse; from visiting metropolitan city campuses, to campuses in small towns; large schools and small schools. PTC takes time in ensuring that every student can find their ‘best fit.’
PTC does so much more, but this as a parent was a highlight for me. Most of all, they care, and their philosophy and mission truly is to “connect students to college.”
PTC, let’s your student become part of their amazing village, and delivers the best for every single person that enters the village.
Thank you PTC!
Anita Bushara, Parent
My experience with Passports to College has been one of the most memorable experiences of my life. During my time with Passports to College, I not only was afforded the opportunity to give back to the community; but I also grew as a person. I was able to learn so many valuable life skills, like event planning, organizational development, and people skills.
While at Passports to College I volunteered to assist with organizing University tours for various schools in the US & Canada. This task allowed me to assist, but I was equally educated through the Universities websites. This knowledge better equipped me to further my own education.
Additionally, during my term at Passports to College I felt like family. Staff were very instrumental in helping me with my studies, financial literacy, and young adult maturation. Staff were not just advisors of my community service hours; but they were moral support when I was in need, for this I am truly grateful.
“Hidden Treasure” is the phrase I would use to describe the team at Passports to College. I have worked with school counsellors, family, and friends none have shown the dedication, persistence, and skill to my education as the members of the Passports to College community.
Alexa Lightbourne, Volunteer
I’m not quite sure if you remember me (I participated in a Writer’s Workshop class).
I just wanted to let you know that the Workshop was very beneficial in that my essay writing skills have improved incredibly. I participated in a College Placement Test. There was an English language portion, as well as Mathematics.
Surprisingly, in the English language section there was an essay question, and since the test was computer based, the results were shown immediately after the test was completed. Excited to see an opportunity to put my new essay writing skills to use, I brought my thoughts together in a well typed essay.
Also, the test allocated an hour for the essay portion. I completed the entire test (including the Math section in just over an hour) therefore, I have learned to manage my time well. During the test, I also made it my business to ensure that I did not exceed 25 minutes to bring my thoughts together, and type the essay.
The essay portion was graded out of 8, 8 being the highest. My score for the essay was…..you guessed it, 8!
I was sooo excited! I truly appreciate all the time you had taken out to ensure that those who attended the Workshop understood the necessary content.
I only hope that your program will continue to expand, in hopes that several other students will reap the benefits that I have that summer.
St. John’s University Graduate