Going to university Open Days are such an exciting time for students – they get to choose where they continue their education and (finally) gain some independence. As much as your kids will tell you how embarrassing you are, on an Open Day your support is invaluable. Never been to one before? Not sure what you should be doing? Well, here are some great tips from Birmingham City University on how to be useful and make the most of the day!

Book your space at one of BCU’s Open Days here!

  1. Be prepared

Now, we’re not saying go classic Dad mode and arrive two weeks in advance, but make sure you plan your route and where to park. Don’t forget that lots of other people will be heading to the Open Day, too, so roads will be busier than usual, and parking spaces could be hard to come by. See if the university has offered suggestions on where to park, or maybe even consider getting the train to help combat this. There’s nothing worse than stressing out about being late and missing those all-important talks – or missing out on free pens!

  1. Ask the right questions

There’s always one joker asking silly questions, but you’ll only embarrass your darling offspring. Try to ask thoughtful questions that your kids might not have considered on the day. We’ve got a list of pertinent questions to ask, but make sure you use the opportunity to understand what the course offers, what sort of lifestyle your child could enjoy, what the tutors and lecturers are like, and practical things about nearby supermarkets, or what the accommodation is like.

  1. Be supportive – not overbearing

All too often, we see parents on Open Days taking over and speaking for their kids and deciding what talks to go along to. Let them take the lead – this is their day and it’s their future they’re deciding on. You’re welcome to check out our postgraduate courses, though, if it seems like the place for you after all!

  1. Explore the surroundings

(Image: Archie Locke)

If you’ve got chance, take some time to discover the local area. This is where your child will be spending at least the next three years, so it’s as much to set your mind at ease as theirs – you need to know they’re staying somewhere safe, but also somewhere they’ll enjoy, with a wide range of activities, culture and restaurants to keep them entertained.

  1. Take an accommodation tour

If your child is staying in halls, we definitely recommend a tour of the accommodation options. While your kids might be working out how many of their visiting friends can fit in their new room, you might be more likely to take note of whether it’s a double or single bed, if there’s a lamp already, where the power points are, etc. This will avoid the inevitable panicked call 20 minutes after you drop them off asking why their single duvet cover doesn’t fit their double duvet…

  1. Find out about the Students’ Union

You’ll probably be remembering your own glittering sports career back in your prime, but actually sports and societies at uni now are so wide ranging that there really is something for everyone. At the Open Day, you’ll get a great overview and find out more about what’s on offer through the Students’ Union. Sports and societies are a great way to make friends, so if you know your child is perhaps a bit more introverted, you can have an ace up your sleeve: “Why not join the Fandoms Society?”.

If you and your child are interested to see what BCU has to offer, visit here to book your Open Day space.

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