Shattering a number of long-lived myths is one of the goals of this year’s Virginia Private College Week, which will be observed at Bridgewater College July 27-Aug. 1.
The program, which was launched in 1997, is sponsored by the Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia (CICV), to promote educational opportunities available at the commonwealth’s private colleges.
Bridgewater will host two information sessions daily for prospective students and their families. The sessions, held Monday through Friday at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. in Nininger Hall, will include campus tours, financial aid and admissions workshops and curriculum/program overviews. On Aug. 1 there will be a 9 a.m. session only. Ample parking is available in the parking lot near the baseball/softball fields on College Street. Parking signs will be posted.
Each prospective student who visits at least three of the 25 participating CICV institutions will receive three application-fee waivers for Virginia private colleges.
The sessions at Bridgewater will also tackle some of the common myths about the cost of a private college education. These include:
Myth: Private colleges cost significantly more than public colleges.
Fact: The difference is far less than many families assume, thanks to significant institutional, merit and need-based grants and the Tuition Assistance Grant.
Myth: Private liberal arts colleges won’t prepare students for a job.
Fact: Students at Virginia private colleges learn to think critically, analytically and creatively, and to communicate well, making them sought after by employers.
Myth: Only low income or extremely smart students receive financial aid.
Fact: Many non-need or non-merit-based institutional grants and aid packages are available.
Myth: Liberal arts colleges do not have good science programs.
Fact: Private colleges offer smaller class sizes allowing for more hands-on learning. In addition, students are provided the opportunity to assist faculty with research projects.
“An education is an investment in a student's future," said Jarret L. Smith, director of admissions at Bridgewater. “You want investments with a high return, and an education from a Virginia private college can be that.”
To register for a session at Bridgewater, call (540) 828-5375, or register online here.
The CICV was founded in 1971 to promote the interests of non-profit, independent higher education in Virginia and was instrumental in starting the state’s Tuition Assistance Grant (TAG) program.