Painting Schools - Attracting Students & The Tour Route

CE Painting painter painting a college dorm wall with a bright blue paint

We hope you had a great summer and the transition back to school has been as smooth as possible. As summer turns to fall our priorities change in many ways. Those who are responsible for facilities typically shift from large projects and renovations to smaller, more manageable projects. These initiatives require less manpower and need to be completed in a way that avoids interruptions or disruptions to facilities, students and faculty. These can be challenging projects.  

One such effort that we see frequently this time of year is tour routes. The fall is a busy time for prospective students visiting colleges and universities. Usually the visitors are soon-to-be-seniors and they are commonly joined by a parent, both parents or a guardian. It’s important to keep in mind that parents are typically the financial sponsors and they have a major influence on school choice.  

This event presents an amazing opportunity to share the best of your brand. A good tour route that is well designed and well managed has a direct correlation with accepted offers - and subsequently landing attractive candidates.  

This said, we are regularly surprised by what we see on campus tour routes. It is not uncommon to see cracked sidewalks, damaged walls, chipped paint, messy hallways, worn out common areas, and broken door handles. This is confusing. Why would these be the featured assets for the tour? Who makes the decision on what is included on the tour route? And what level of thought is given towards the routine maintenance of these assets?  

Best practices for tour routes:

  • Use one part epoxies whenever possible; these are easy to apply, low VOC, and hold up much better than standard latex paint 
  • Use premium paint always as it will show better and hold better 
  • Opt for a matte finish for common area walls; it is less “shiny” than typical eggshell and hides those imperfections on older walls and is scrubbable and burnish resistance 
  • Paint those ceilings! A bright white ceiling can really lighten up the area 
  • Make sure you give as much thought to the exterior finishes as you do the interior
  • Schedule your internal and external cleaners (and landscapers) as timely as possible with the scheduled tour routes
  • Door frames, handrails and railings are all high use objects and require less budget to maintain than other assets 
  • Libraries, business centers, academic buildings and student centers should have the highest quality finishes and be top priority; if these facilities aren’t in good shape you are sending the wrong message to prospective students

One big challenge with upgrading tour routes when school is in session is timing. A reliable and flexible painting partner will be able to do this work in busy common areas during off hours to reduce interference with daily operations.  

If you have any questions about your tour routes or how to best maintain them, please click here to contact us.

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