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The Trials and Tribulations of a Tour Guide/Panelist

Disclaimer: Please read with caution.  This article is meant to be a satire.  The opinions expressed in this article do not reflect the author’s or Her Campus BC’s feelings toward or position on any of the topics covered below.  Thank you for your understanding.

In the last two years as a volunteer with the Student Admissions Program (SAP), I certainly feel like I’ve seen it all. In fact, one of my favorite games to play is challenging my tours to give me something I’ve never heard before. Information Panels naturally bring a whole new breed of interesting – 200 people in Gasson 100? Sure, I see no way that this could go wrong. So for your entertainment, I’ve compiled the top three questions that I’ve ever been asked as a BC tour guide and panelist – the good, the bad, and the ugly. Think you can come up with something better? Well, by all means, jump on in on a tour and give it your best shot.

“Do you guys use cadavers?”

Yes, you’re thinking of the right thing. As the dictionary defines a cadaver as, “a dead body, especially a human body to be dissected; corpse”, I’m sure you can imagine my surprise when one particularly enthusiastic mother popped this gem in Higgins Hall. Now let me tell you, it is nearly impossible to not answer this question with series of other questions, starting predominately with one word: really? Really, that’s the deciding factor in your college decision process? Really, you think that was one of the frequently asked questions outlined in my tour guide handbook? Really, you think this isn’t something on the list of things that I really don’t want to think about? Not to mention once that metaphorical coffin is opened we face the questions: where do we store said cadavers, who is in charge of them, and what EXACTLY is this university with no graduate medical school using them for?

…then again, maybe that’s why Carney basement always smells like that.  

“What did you do last Saturday night?”

Silence. Probably not the smoothest moment I’ve ever had on a panel, this nugget gave all of us a run for our money. The question came from a pretty blonde girl sitting in the front row, and I have to admit – part of me hated her and part of me wanted to be her best friend. Luckily the first two panelists were of age (because none of us upstanding citizens would consume alcohol before turning 21), and together they launched into a detailed discussion of MA’s, Cityside, and the mods. Even the admissions counselor jumped in, giving her two cents about which bar was better as a BC alum and describing what the “modular apartments” really look like on a Saturday morning. Way to stay classy, BC.  This intro showed us all that on a scale of one to things-that-should-not-be-highlighted-in-the-BC Prospective Students Manual, the activities that happen inside Mary Ann’s come second only to the two am Newton bus. Regardless, by the time they had finished this lively debate, the momentary panic had subdued and my fellow sophomore and I were able to cobble together a mixture of a cappella shows, surprise birthday parties, and athletic events for our Saturday evening plans. But I’ll never forget that pretty blonde girl – snaps for you, future Eagle. 

“If you could describe your experience at BC in one word, what would it be?”

In my two years with SAP, this is both the best and most challenging question I’ve ever heard asked. After all, how can you summarize every wonderful, frustrating, exciting, stressful, perfect moment at Boston College in just one word? As we went down the line, the panelists threw out some quality answers: rewarding, energizing, unexpected.  But it was clear that none of them managed to quite sum up what we were all trying to say. By the time we got to the last member of the panel, a senior from Chicago, IL, everyone was paying attention. “If I had to pick one word to describe my last four years at BC,” she said, looking around at the admissions coordinator and the antsy little siblings bouncing in their seats, “It would be family.” At a place like our home here on the heights, this idea can sometimes get lost in the rush of classes and extracurricular activities, volunteering and internships. But in one word, this student managed to explain to a room full of people exactly what it means to be an Eagle. And that, Her Campus readers, is worth any trial or tribulation.

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