c-campushosts

Campus tour guide, Michael Litton speaks with his group as they tour campus outside the Adele Hall Learning Commons on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021, in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Almost every day, campus tours are given to prospective University of Nebraska-Lincoln students. They walk through the library, the union and all around campus trying to experience a little bit of the day-to-day life of a Husker. Who better to share that experience than an actual Husker?

These tour guides are called campus visit hosts, and their position is offered by the Office of Admissions. According to Sara Smith, the campus host coordinator, students in this position get the opportunity to share their passion for UNL with prospective students. 

“The entire position is basically giving campus tours,” Smith said. “Our campus hosts are very passionate about being a Husker. They just want to share their experiences.”

Ryan Zimmerman, a senior construction management major, is a campus host and said that one of his favorite aspects of the job is getting to meet and talk to people from all different walks of life. 

“I very much enjoy just having a nice casual conversation,” Zimmerman said. “It’s a great opportunity to do that and learn about different experiences. Especially when we get folks that aren’t from the Midwest, it’s always exciting to share experiences.”

Zimmerman said giving tours to lots of different people means that he can have a variety of tour groups. Sometimes the group is talkative, other times they can be very quiet, which he said can be hard.

“You can get multiple families and sometimes you can have very quiet tour groups,” Zimmerman said. “So trying to keep people engaged and getting people to ask questions can be a challenge when you have a large group like that.”

Hannah Schulhof, a senior psychology major, is also a campus host. She said that one of her most interesting tour experiences came from a very large group that wasn’t so talkative. 

“The whole tour, not a single person asked any questions,” Schulhof said. “At the end of the tour, I was basically begging them to ask me questions. I got one question at the end of that tour and it was ‘What’s with electric scooters everywhere?’ That was the only question I got.”

Despite that being her most interesting tour, Schulhof said it was not her most memorable tour. That title is reserved for a family she met on a Red Letter Day who happened to be from her home state of California. She said that after the tour she got to eat lunch with them in a dining hall. After the touring student left to meet a friend, Schulhof said the prospective student’s mom and the mom’s friend stayed and talked with her for hours. 

“We were eating in Selleck for such a long time,” Schulhof said. “All of the other families started to leave, so when they left, the other tour guides would come join our table. We sat together for like two hours. It turns out, the daughter got hired as a campus host last semester. So now I work with her, and she told me the day I gave her a tour was a magical day and she realized she wanted to come to Nebraska.”

The Office of Admissions is currently accepting applications for the campus host position for the spring semester. Students who are interested can apply online

Zimmerman said he thinks that other students should apply to be campus hosts because it is a great experience and rewarding job.

“We, as campus hosts, are one of the first faces that these students see,” Zimmerman said. “When they take that big N-shaped picture at the beginning of the semester with all the freshmen, there’s a decent chance that over half of them are students that me or one of the many campus hosts took around campus, and they’re now a part of the university. It’s a rewarding thing.”

culture@dailynebraskan.com