Navigating Through College Choices Just Got Easier

By Lourdes Rodriguez

Is college on the radar in your household? When it comes to finding the right college fit, campus visits can help narrow down the selection.

In-person tours are a helpful step in the college application process, particularly for students interested in competitive four-year schools. According to U.S. News & World Report: “Before choosing the best college to attend, it is important for students to test the waters. Making a college visit and touring the campus can be pivotal in a student’s decision.”

In the Sunshine State, the University of Florida’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS) in Gainesville, FL is set to host the newly developed NaviGATORing CALS program on two separate dates: September 6 and September 13. The program provides a full day of experiences on campus tailored to a student’s areas of interest. CALS is part of UF/IFAS, the agricultural, natural resources and  life sciences division of the university.

NaviGATORing CALS provides high school juniors and seniors the opportunity to shadow a CALS Ambassador, learn more about the college and the UF admissions process (both for freshmen and transfer students), sit in on classes related to their major of interest, learn about numerous campus organizations and activities, and explore the unique majors, minors and professional development opportunities in CALS.

“The NaviGATORing CALS program was designed to show prospective students what it’s like to live a day in the life of a CALS student,” said CALS Dean Elaine Turner. “With personalized schedules based on each participant’s subject area of interest, our tour attendees experience all UF and CALS have to offer. This includes how our more than 20 majors can assist in preparing them for a long-term career in health care, natural resources, sustainability, food systems, human wellbeing and agriculture industries.”

It is important for students to know what they want to get out of a college experience before stepping on campus. Turner encourages students to consider these three tips to help with the college selection process:

Think about how a college or university’s strengths align with personal career goals and skill sets.

Pick a college based on academic programs, extracurricular and hands-on learning experiences, location and faculty teaching excellence.

If students can imagine themselves at a particular institution they are on the right track to selecting the school that will be a great fit for them.

To learn more information about NaviGATORing CALS and to register for a tour, visit: 

  • The College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS) administers the degree programs of the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS). CALS’ mission  is to deliver educational programs that prepare students to address the world’s critical challenges related to agriculture, food systems, human wellbeing, natural resources and sustainable communities. Visit to learn more