Tag Archives: college tours

All You Need to Know about Demonstrated Interest

As some of you embark on the college admissions journey, you may start to hear the term “demonstrated interest.” How does it play into the college admissions process? What can you do to use demonstrated interest to your advantage? In this article, we will share our insights on demonstrated interest and its benefits!


(More of an audio learner? Check out this video by Insight’s Head of College Admissions Counseling Purvi Mody!)


What is demonstrated interest?

how do colleges look at demonstrated interest

Starting around 2015, demonstrated interest has started to play a role in SOME colleges’ admissions decision-making process. For the colleges, demonstrated interest helps them understand which students will apply and attend their schools. These colleges want to know that when they send out acceptance letters, the students would likely attend.


How does this help you, the students?

When you are demonstrating interest, you send a message to the college: “I am interested! I may want to join your school.” Beyond that, you are learning if this school is the right fit for you. Whether through online information sessions, college fairs, email lists, or college visits, you can build a better idea of what your college years may look like.


Do all schools care about demonstrated interest?

Not at all. Previously, we emphasized that only SOME colleges look at demonstrated interest. Those are usually small private or small liberal arts schools. However, that doesn’t mean you should just stop your college research completely. If you need to write supplemental essays or a “Why College” essay, attending information sessions and talking to an admissions representative are great ways to gather ideas!


Read more: List of Colleges Where Demonstrated Interest May Benefit You


What are some ways to demonstrate interest?

There are so many ways for you to learn about your potential schools (and for them to get to know you too!). Here are some examples:

  • Go to college fairs and fill out your information
  • Sign up for email lists (and actually check out the content that interests you)
  • Campus visit – online or in-person
  • Early application
  • Supplemental essay showing how well you have researched the school and why those qualities are important to you
  • Speak to college admissions representatives
  • Informational interviews with alumni or students
  • Attend information sessions. If you join a virtual session, make sure you ask thoughtful questions that can help you learn more about the school beyond what’s on its website


Read more: The Art of Informational Interviews


How do I get the most out of a virtual information session?

how do colleges look at demonstrated interest

First, be engaged. It’s so easy to have three to five programs on your screen while you sit in a webinar. It is also tempting to chat with your friends on your phone. Don’t. Focus on the presentation, take detailed notes, and personalize your data. You want to take notes of things you care about or find interesting, so you can use them in a supplemental essay or help you make the final decision to attend.


Do some research before you attend the virtual info session, so the questions you ask are actually meaningful to you. Don’t ask questions that you can easily answer by searching on the college’s website.


What about online college tours?

While walking on the campus and visiting the city that the school is located in can be a great experience, online college tours can save you time and money and provide you plenty of information about the campus. It should not be used as the only tool for you to use. Join an information session. Follow the school’s social media. Talk to a couple of alumni or current students. We have a wonderful network of Insight students who are either now in college or have graduated. Our counselors connect them with current Insight students, so they can learn about major choices, career paths, and college experience!


Final thoughts:

Remember, you don’t want to do this for every school. The most important key is to build a meaningful, authentic relationship with colleges. And that takes time and effort. You need to figure out which schools you may want to know better and adjust your list along the way. The college admissions process is a self-discovery journey for you, and learning to prioritize what’s important to you is part of that growth.


Read more: Think it Through: Early Decision


Created by Purvi Mody

This article was a summary of the video interview with Insight’s Co-Founder and Head of Counseling Purvi Mody.

Since 1998, Purvi has dedicated her career to education and is exceedingly well versed in the college admissions process. Her philosophy centers around helping kids identify and apply to the schools that are the best fit for them and then develop applications that emphasize their unique attributes and talents.

An Insight to Northeastern University

Northeastern University provides a unique balance of campus and city life that I’ve rarely seen equaled. Not only does the university offer an exceptional academic experience and incredible employment opportunities, but it’s also walking distance to the Museum of Fine Arts, Fenway Park, Boston Common, the South End, Newbury Street, and more. 


In other words, you will NOT need a car as an undergraduate student.  And to make you feel even more at home among your peers, when combined with Harvard, BU, MIT and others, more than 25% of Boston residents are students.




Northeastern carefully considers the return on investment (ROI) for its students and wants graduates to be ready to succeed in the workforce after college. The university offers 175 majors, including more than 120 combined majors. 50% of students choose more than one, and the most popular areas of study include Engineering, Business, Computer Science, Nursing, Psychology, and Law. 



Admissions reviews for freshman applicants are based on two primary factors, academic record, and personal traits. While the overall admit rate at Northeastern is 19%, they offer considerable flexibility in terms of how and when to apply. High school seniors have the option to apply either Early Decision I (which is binding) or Early Action (which is not). The deadline for both options is November 1st. However, if you are not ready to commit to NEU as your top choice at that time, Northeastern also offers Early Decision II with a January 1st deadline, the same deadline as those who will apply Regular Decision.



Northeastern emphasizes innovative thinking and encourages students to apply what they are learning in the classroom in real-world settings. To help students along this path, they have an experiential learning requirement, which can be satisfied in four different ways: Cooperative education, Global experience, Service-learning, or Research. On tour, I even heard about one student who took part in a research internship in Antarctica.



Co-ops are offered starting in sophomore year, and they enable students to integrate classroom study with up to six months of full-time employment. Students do not have to take courses during the Co-op, and there is also no tuition cost during this period. How cool is that? In addition, students will typically take a course the semester before to educate themselves on the process and learn to build resumes and cover letters, interview, and research opportunities that will provide the best fit.  And here’s a stat that will make parents smile – 54% of Northeastern graduates WILL receive a job offer from a co-op employer.



Students at NEU enjoy a broad range of social and organized activities. There are over 400 clubs on campus, and if you can’t find what you’re looking for, it only takes 12 students to create your own. The main gym is open from 5 am to midnight to accommodate every student’s schedule. Many students enjoy Broom Ball, and nearly 2000 students participate in the annual underwear run on parents weekend.  Yes, you read that correctly. When the weather is nice, you will see many students relaxing in colorful Adirondack chairs spread all over campus.  The President’s Public Arts Initiative has resulted in amazing outdoor murals that add to the inclusive environment, and each fall many students take part in the Husky Hunt, a city-wide scavenger hunt throughout Boston.




Northeastern provides a different experience than most colleges, which is a major part of its appeal. I’d encourage anyone who’s considering Northeastern to schedule a visit at your convenience. Finally, for parents who are concerned about sending their child to an urban university, know that Northeastern not only uses the SafeZone mobile app, but they were also the very 1st college in North America to use it.  In more ways than one, Northeastern is a leader.


All the best, 

Zach Pava and Team Insight