April 15, 2009
Franklin and Marshall
Elsa and I drove out of Media, Pa. where, after we finished at Swarthmore, we had an expensive dinner in town complete with live opera entertainment for which we had to pay $3 each. That was a first. We found our way to our hotel in Lancaster, and spent the night. We awoke to rain, and experienced out first rainy tours yet. Although growing up, I spent many weekends in Philadelphia visiting my grandparents, I don't think I had ever been to Lancaster, population 55K. What an adorable city! It's the 8th largest city in PA. Elsa and I loved the cute row houses and couldn't decide which one we wanted most as we drove to the F&M campus.
We parked in visitors parking and proceeded to follow a tour away from the admissions office and got so lost, we had to call for directions back to the correct house. Franklin and Marshall is a beautiful campus, but looks very different from Swarthmore and Haverford as most all of the buildings are brick, giving the campus a warm red look, as opposed to the gray and stone colored limestone buildings on the other campuses.
Our tour guides were Emily and Wes, very personable and informative, as usual. They both spoke to the whole group and had private chats as we walked from stop to stop. I quickly learned that I wanted to be near the conversation to get as much information as possible.
One nice thing about this school is that classes seem to let out at the same time. Suddenly, the walkways were full of lots of students passing each other, on their way to their next class. it made the campus seem busy and vibrant. Most of the students seemed happy, although wet. There seemed to be a lot of kids that look like kids Elsa would be friends with.
Elsa loved the F&M campus and the school is now high on her list of "target" schools. It helps that her friend, Tyler, will attend in the fall. That, I think, put F&M on the map for her. Here, Elsa had her first interview. It lasted about 35 minutes, and she went alone with the interviewer to a rear office. When they were done, they both came out and included me in the end of their conversation. The woman was very nice and indicated that Elsa interviewed as much as she was interviewed. I hope that is a good thing.
After the interview (we had no info session at this school,) we ambled over to the athletic center to find the coach, from whom we had not heard via email. Turns out, she has a day job in a school and is not on campus all of the time. This could be a problem. We left Elsa's packet and her video, but do not know what to expect.