Thursday, March 10, 2016

Spring Semester Tours Pick Up

As the weather looks up, and high school seniors hear back from the University of Maryland admissions office, prospective students flock to the campus for tours. Kinsey Manchester, a sophomore at UMD, is a tour guide with the Maryland Images group.

A little before 3 p.m. on Wednesday Mar. 9, Manchester walks her group of 15 prospective students and their parents from the Visitor Center to the front of the Mitchell Building to start the tour.

As the group makes its way to McKeldin Mall, Manchester answers individual questions. Maddi Terry (on right) asks Manchester about living on campus as an out-of-state student.

Manchester stands on a bench at the end of the fountain as she talks about campus events and traditions.

Nicole Kirkner, UMD sophomore and tour guide-in-training, observes Manchester. This is the first tour she gets to shadow, after having gone through a rigorous, three-stage process to become a Maryland Images guide, Kirkner explains.

Jana Calhoun and her father John look up at McKeldin Library as Manchester explains that the library appears smaller from the outside. "It actually has seven floors, but some levels share windows. It looks less threatening that way," says Manchester.

Most of the parents hold visitor guides for the duration of the 75-minute tour.

The group makes its way to the Stamp Student Union. Manchester's tour is one of  at least nine on this day, and other groups crowd the student union as this group enters.

Manchester takes the group to north campus to show them the dining hall and walk them through the lobby of LaPlata Hall, The prospective students express enthusiasm and ask questions as they stop on the steps in front of LaPlata.

Terry stops to look at something on a lower level of the Eppley Recreation Center. She folds the backs of her shoes under her heels, saying her feet are starting to hurt.

The tour concludes in Hornbake Plaza. Manchester talks about her love of UMD, "Even if it isn't this school, I hope you all find a school that feels like home," she says. A tired Terry hugs her mother, convincing her to walk back to the student union for ice cream. 

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