Becoming a Tour Guide at QU

QU is known for its beautiful grass, the polling institution, and our kickass hockey team. These are facts that all students have instilled in them. There are some quirks as well that come with being a student like, don’t walk across the grass, and always say hi to Java John. Then there are the facts that are only known by a select few. Tour Guides. Tour guides know that we have a 16:1 student faculty ratio and can name the accreditation body for every school. Not to mention, that they are able to magically walk backwards without missing a beat. I went on my first tour at QU and fell in love. I also thought how when I came here I have to be a tour guide. I want to show pride for my school and be able to share that with potential students. I am currently a freshman in the Entry-Level Masters Physician Assistant Program and I have reached the dream of becoming a Tour Guide.

The fall semester will bring a new class of freshmen as well a the loss of many of our seniors, specifically tour guides. With seniors graduating there are a lot of spots to be filled. You have probably seen all of the flyers hanging around for information meetings. I want to share my experiences and the process of becoming a Tour Guide so that potential Tour Guides can see what it's really like and why it’s the best job on campus.

            To become a Tour Guide you should 100% attend one of the information sessions and write down everything they say because it's a lot. First you have to sign up to get emails by attending the meeting. Then you have to go into the office of undergraduate admissions in Echlin hall and sign up to do tour shadows. Shadows are when you follow a tour guide during a tour. You just stand behind all of the parents and kids and go on the tour. The hardest part of this is when parents ignore the tour guide and try to talk to you as if you have all of Quinnipiac’s deep dark secrets. You have to do this four times. Sounds easy, but it's difficult when there are no shadow spots available that fit into your schedule. This is probably the hardest part in the process. It gets boring going on four tours and it can take a few weeks to get them all in but you have to push through. Next you have your evaluation. They will email you a 16 page tour script and you have to memorize it. The whole thing. Word for word. But it's ok,  because you get to learn a bunch of cool facts and learn how to walk backwards. Which you definitely have to practice by the way, it's harder than it looks. To practice I would just say the script over and over and write down what I got wrong or missed. I had AACPS the business school accreditation body written on my hand for a week because I couldn’t remember it for the life of me. But just keep going over it until it’s second nature.

            Your are now ready for your evaluation. For the evaluation you have to give a tour to one of your potential bosses or an experienced tour guide. My first evaluation was horrible. I forgot everything about the school of business and was stuttering the whole time. It also felt bizarre giving a tour to one person AND having to walk backwards the whole time. Oh and then I failed. But no fret, most people fail on their first try. But, DO NOT QUIT. Yes it sucks, but go on those two more shadows, power through, and get a perfect score your next evaluation.

            But it’s not over. Sorry. Now that you have passed you start volunteering. So you give tours for free and the more you volunteer the greater your chances (I have been told) of getting hired. This part is actually fun because you finally get to give a tour. I was so scared and it was to what felt like 30 people. But then it just comes naturally and you find your way. It is finally time for the final step. You schedule an interview and fill out the official application. Warning this is quite long and you need to have an additional resume and references. So don’t save it until the last minute like I did. The most important thing about the interview is to not wear jeans and try to dress business casual. During the interview they want to see your personality because you are the face that potential students will first see. They will do some stress tests where they ask you questions like “How are the frat parties” and “What’s Toad’s”. But you’ll figure out those answers while going on your many tour shadows.

And that’s it. As someone who just went through the process I can tell you its long and you have to be dedicated. But if you get through its the best job. Something I plan to talk about in a Part II to this article. So, GO BOBCATS and get out and support your school by becoming a Tour Guide.