Do colleges place the same importance on alumni interviews as they do on on-campus interviews?
Yes, an interview is an interview, no matter where it takes place. Colleges recognize that not all students have the resources to come to campus, so many offer interviews with local graduates or with admissions staff members who are visiting high schools. Since interviews are given the same consideration in the admissions process, wherever they are held, colleges ask that students just interview once. However, if you live within an hour or two of a college, you may want to combine your tour with an interview, as doing so will give you an opportunity to spend time on campus and possibly have a meal or attend a class all in one visit.
An alumni interview is an excellent opportunity to learn about the college from one of its graduates who is still connected to the college. Alumni volunteers interview students in their area. As a prospective student, you can learn a great deal from a graduate, recent or otherwise. Recent graduates can tell you about their time at the college in the not too distant past and older alums can tell you how their college experience led to the career and the other life choices they have made since graduation. Either way, alumni will be enthusiastic supporters of their college and will have enjoy sharing their thoughts with you.
Alumni interviews often take place in a public setting such as a coffee shop.
I think you got a good sense of who Meredith is and what may be a good match for her. When we began this process, I was truly overwhelmed. I now feel like this process is “do-able”, thanks to you.