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Using Interactive Maps to Highlight Off-Campus Activities and Attractions

January 9, 2017 by Sam Slater

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From CampusBird Blog

The college experience extends beyond the campus. Here are seven ways to highlight off-campus activities and attractions for visitors. 

For the proactive admissions department, one of the best ways to take advantage of a strong digital web presence is by thinking outside the box. More universities are doing that by using interactive maps to promote their school to prospective students, and as a resource for current students, staff, and alumni.

But there is more to the college experience than campus life: off-campus activities and attractions are often of great importance to students and staff. Interactive maps can be an important tool to showcase what the local area offers, demonstrates that your school is truly part of the community, and encourages students and visitors to get out and explore the area.

Below are seven ways schools can highlight off-campus activities and resources worth noting on your interactive map.

Mark Points of Interest Around Town

Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles highlights off-campus activities around LA. Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles highlights activities around LA on their interactive campus map.

For the local vibe, check out Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, which highlights several of the city’s major attractions and activities, such as the Staples Center, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and Venice Beach, via the “LMU in LA” tab.

Point Out Restaurants and Coffee Shops

Looking for a great restaurant? How about the best spots to hang out downtown? Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY offers a guide to downtown, and even includes places where the Skidmore ID card is accepted.

Show Where Visitors Can Stay

As a visitor, it can be difficult to find the best places to stay near campus. Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon University drops a pin on hotels in the surrounding area.

Offer Transportation Resources

North Carolina State University Highlights Bus Stops and Transportation North Carolina State University Highlights Bus Stops and Transportation

Bus routes, parking, and getting to and from campus is an immediate concern for visitors and students alike. North Carolina State University Centennial Campus in Raleigh provides a detailed map of bus stops on and around campus. Rice University takes it a step further by offering real-time bus locations and route information under the "Transit" tab on their map.

Showcase Cultural and Entertainment Options

From museums to specialty stores and even the boarding area for a local water taxi service, Augustana College notes the cultural hotspots and points of interest in the Quad Cities.

Highlight Recreational Off-Campus Activities

Montana Tech goes far beyond the campus by highlighting nearby ski resorts, and hiking and biking trails that are a big attraction to the area.

Highlight Alumni & Internships

Augustana College maps where students can get summer internships in the Quad Cities area. Augustana College maps where students can get summer internships in the Quad Cities area.

Alumni play a key marketing role for many universities. University of Miami's map shows where their alumni's businesses are located around the globe. Augustana College pin points locations students seek out summer internships.

Off-campus activities, from social outings to cultural experiences, from outdoor recreation to summer internships, is playing an increasingly important role in college considerations. Students may feel a stronger connection to your school when they see all your area has to offer. A little humble brag never hurt anyone, right?

 

Topics: College Campus Tours, Interactive Virtual Experiences, Virtual Engagement

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