Educational fairs are one of the best opportunities for current students and prospective master's degree applicants to discover their dream program or become familiar with other suitable study options. It's certainly worth taking the time to meet with college representatives in person, as well as with peers who may have similar goals for your education or career.
Characteristics of Educational Fairs
Educational fairs are "free"
At least for attendees looking to learn more about the schools and programs that interest them. The people who pay the bill are the organizers of these fairs and the exhibitors who participate in them. This is fair, as organizers benefit from organizing these fairs and exhibitors benefit from marketing their courses to their potential 'clients''. That is, the students and parents who make up the majority of the attendees.
They are a single window to collect information about the courses and schools that interest you
Of course, much of this information should be available online, but there is nothing like the process of being able to compare different course offerings between different schools at an education fair. Additionally, students with questions about specific details that are not available online can take this opportunity to ask marketing representatives at each school. If marketers can't answer these questions, they should be able to direct the student to someone within that organization who can answer those questions. You also need to remember that not everyone has access to the Internet at home or school and therefore the ability to do the online research necessary to learn more about these courses. Especially people from rural areas and less fortunate backgrounds. These education fairs are a great opportunity for you to learn more about different schools and programs.
Educational fairs are not only useful for students but also for their parents
Sometimes parents can be authoritarian, and some even try to dictate the course their children should take. However, if parents and their children have a good understanding of the expectations on both sides, education fairs can be very useful places. Parents and their children can learn more about the courses of interest here. Education fairs are also a great place for students and parents to find out more about schools and colleges that they might not otherwise know about. Most students and parents know the 'big names' like Harvard and Yale, among others. But there may be smaller schools that offer programs that are more suitable or affordable for certain students. Of course, one needs to do due diligence when looking at some of the smaller schools. But don't prejudge not-so-well-known schools because some of them may have very dedicated teachers in certain niches.
Education fairs should also be a place where you can interact with alumni
In the same way, you can interact with current students from some of these schools. Ideally, exhibitors should not only send marketing staff to run their booths, but also include students in their strategy. After all, who better to give potential students first-hand information than past and current students?
Benefits of Educational Fairs
Test preparation consultations
Whether you are applying for a bachelor's or master's program, the application process is not easy. The application packet should be ready on time, and often it should also contain your admission test score such as GMAT or GRE. Especially if the program has a business or administrative focus. Depending on the location and language of instruction of the chosen school, you may also be required to submit proof of your English proficiency, with a TOEFL or IELTS test score. Fortunately, educational event organizers are well aware that exam taking is a difficult stage for most applicants. In order to provide additional value to attendees, study fairs often invite expert consultants who can offer guidance on different aspects of the application.
For example, GMAT and language test consultants will have excellent knowledge of their niche and current competition in terms of test scores. They will filter out the most important details you need to know to begin your preparation and can evaluate your case individually. Keep in mind that tests like GMAT, IELTS and TOEFL have a very specific structure. Even if you trust your knowledge of the English language, your test-taking skills will probably need some work as well. You will need to familiarize yourself with the sections of the test, the time limit for each section, and some of the more complicated tasks and questions that might be included. In these cases, getting some advice from a professional consultant can go a long way.
Application and career workshops
If you are particularly interested in learning more about a specific topic and think that meeting with an expert is not enough, check to see if there are any open workshops or classes to attend during the event. Some workshops cover the GMAT or TOEFL / IELTS exams. Others may take a longer-term focus by offering professional advice or advice on creating a strong resume.
Although you can find an overwhelming amount of information online, workshops are a more personalized and practical way to acquire that knowledge and learn to apply it. The Expatica international community website explains this very well. She points out that presentations and workshops often provide additional information and advice on exhibitor stands. Likewise, they talk about personal development, how to be successful, and how to write a successful CV. They are worth looking at - you might be surprised to find that you may not have all areas covered.
Direct communication with representatives and former students
One of the main benefits of attending the education fair is that you have the opportunity to interact with official representatives and former students from different universities in one place. You can talk to them and get instant answers regarding any questions they have regarding funding, the course, the application process, and more. It goes without saying that online research is supportive. However, the type of information you obtain here can contribute considerably to your decision making.
Get an idea of what universities want in their future students
Another key advantage of the visiting education fair is that you get a good idea of the kinds of qualities that colleges look for in their future students. Admissions officers can help you appreciate on what basis admission to a specific college is provided. If you have the opportunity to meet foreign students studying, they will possibly mention this point above all else. In fact, when you go there, you will also notice the same. Typically, university representatives place great importance on qualities such as focus, willpower, and passion. In addition, some universities also give preference to students with work experience. But then, keep in mind that each program has its own needs. Therefore, you can expect to see some flexibility in the criteria.
Get in touch with expert speakers
In addition to university representatives and alumni, you can also get in touch with various expert speakers there. They can be seen participating in seminars and presentations to share their views on a specific topic. For example, if you haven't decided whether to get a master's or a Ph.D., you can listen to their suggestions and get a clear idea of a better option. At the same time, they can also guide you on the application procedure and the benefits of pursuing studies abroad.
Scholarships and financing advice
One of the pressing issues that concerns all master's applicants is funding. How will you be able to pay for your studies? This is especially relevant if you plan to start a program abroad. This is an experience that generally requires a bit more planning in terms of the available budget. Attending education fairs is a great first step in evaluating your budget, as well as the different options for financing your degree. Most importantly, on-site school representatives will be able to provide you with detailed information about scholarship opportunities you may apply for.
Scholarships can be based on merit, which means that if you have exceptionally high grades or a high score on the admission test, you could be exempt from part of the tuition fees. Or based on need awarded to students whose family income is below average. Some scholarships have special terms and can even be awarded to students from particular countries or nationalities. Just be sure to explore the opportunities in each individual program.
Of course, even those who are not eligible for a scholarship or outside grant will be able to get advice on funding. For example, local consultants and school representatives will easily provide information on a student's average monthly budget on a particular campus. It is important to be realistic about what you can afford and whether you will be comfortable with the living and travel expenses that are an inevitable part of the complete “study abroad” package.
Games and lotteries
Last but not least, many events offer additional benefits for attendees in the form of lotteries or giveaways. For example, attending the Access Masters Open Fair gives you a chance to win a free campus tour of the college of your choice. As the University of Bath (UK) states on its website: “Open days are the best way to explore the campus and experience university life before starting your studies.
You can meet the students and staff and ask any questions you have about their course, accommodation and the support we provide to our students. "Other lottery prizes could include a free IELTS, TOEFL or GMAT preparation course, vouchers for students or even travel and travel tickets. Although the chance to win an award probably won't be the main reason to visit an education fair, it's a fun aspect to look forward to. Before you rush to the next study fair near you, take Long enough to prepare and do some research on the participating schools and available study options, this will make the event really useful for your individual needs and allow you to reap all the benefits mentioned above.