How to Plan a College and Career Day: Tips from Petal High School’s Event

Jailaih Gowdy

Seniors at Petal High School and Career and Technical Center participated in a college day event earlier in the fall coordinated by Brooke Walter, CTE counselor. Their event was planned in helpful steps that  anyone could follow to plan their own similar event.

1. Contact a MACRAO representative to select a date and invite colleges.

After working with the Mississippi Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (MACRAO) Board contact to get the date on their calendar, Walter then reserves the gym with coaches. Then, in early August, she sends out an invitation to everyone on their college day list by email.

The colleges that attended included: Belhaven University, Delta State University, Hatfield's Inc., Mississippi College of Beauty Culture, Jackson State University, military divisions, Milsaps College, Mississippi College, Mississippi State University, Mississippi Valley State University, Pearl River Community College, University of Alabama in Huntsville,University of Alabama, University of Southern Mississippi, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, University of Mississippi, and William Carey University.

2. Involve of others and delegate tasks.

  • Provide refreshments
  •  Decide what equipment and props will be needed

The culinary arts program determined the theme and made refreshments, the student services coordinators and teacher academy teacher assisted with decorations, and digital media technology students gathered the fight songs of the colleges/military present to play during the event.

3. Prepare students for what the day will entail.

The students came prepared with different questions to ask the recruiters and were eager to learn about the different departments each college had to offer.

4. Gauge student reaction for improve for next year.

“Our seniors seemed excited on college day and were armed with questions to ask the representatives. There was definitely a buzz in the room,” Walter said. 

 After realizing the continued success they had with college day, Walter is eager to host is again.

“We considered the day a success and will host college day again. We got positive feedback from both students and representatives.”


Connections is the magazine for K-12 career and technical education (CTE) in Mississippi. The biannual publication features students, educators, schools, and organizations from approximately 50 career pathways across 16 career clusters. This Mississippi Department of Education publication is produced by the Research and Curriculum Unit at Mississippi State University. Issues are disseminated in print and electronic forms in May and December each year.

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