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41st Annual Chester County College Fair Provides Postsecondary Options for Students

On October 16, the Chester County Intermediate Unit (CCIU) hosted the 2023 Chester County College Fair at United Sports in Downingtown. The fair featured representatives from over 140 colleges and universities across the nation to help attending students hone in on the options available for their postsecondary plans. From educational endeavors and opportunities in the armed forces to options for special education, the fair offered a broad variety of future career pathways for high school students across the county. 

First time college fair attendee Jennifer H., the parent of a Coatesville Area School District ninth grader, emphasized how much her daughter enjoyed the event, saying, "My daughter loved going around and inquiring with different schools to see if they have an equine science program, because she wants to work with horses. I think she had fun finding schools that have her interests in a major or minor." She added, "We were pleasantly surprised; there was more than we anticipated, given that her interests are so specialized." 

In addition to traditional educational institutions, the fair offered information about nursing schools, military academies and trade schools. Attendees were able to learn and ask questions about admissions requirements, academic offerings, extracurricular activities and campus life. The event empowered students and their families to explore their interests and discover new opportunities while meeting with many representatives in a single evening. 

TCHS Pennock’s Bridge Practical Nursing Program (PNP) student Grace O’Boyle stated, “I gained insights into admissions dates, required courses and grade expectations, specifically regarding math grades and expected years of science.” O’Boyle was excited to share that the information will help her determine what requirements she needs when applying to nursing schools. 

O’Boyle’s father stated, “It was nice to meet representatives from many schools quickly, and compare and contrast. In terms of a student late in the process of applying to schools, this helped when asking questions and looking at both two-year and four-year options.” 

The long list of colleges and universities in attendance at this year's Chester County College Fair included Drexel University, Eastern University, Franklin & Marshall College, Marywood University, Villanova University, University of Pittsburgh, Penn State University and York College of Pennsylvania. Out-of-state schools included High Point University, James Madison University, Slippery Rock University, Virginia Tech, Wilmington University and the University of Alabama.  

The Chester County College Fair is organized by the Chester County Intermediate Unit (CCIU) on behalf of Chester County students and their families and is sponsored by Wegmans and CCRES Educational and Behavioral Health Services ( For more information regarding the fair and future CCIU special events, please contact Jay DellaRagione at or call 484-237-5053.