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Minnesota university students give behind-the-scenes look at campus life on "The College Tour"

Minnesota college students featured in "The College Tour" TV episode
Minnesota college students featured in "The College Tour" TV episode 02:50

COLLEGEVILLE, Minn. — Two Minnesota colleges are the first schools in the state to be featured in a national TV show highlighting life on campus.

Kobe Forbes is one of 10 College of St. Benedict and St. John's University students and alumni who tell their stories on the 30-minute show. It aims to make the college selection process more accessible and inclusive.

Forbes came to Minnesota to study engineering physics from the Bahamas, a country that the institutions have had a relationship with for over 100 years. 

"This school actually played a very vital role in our country's history, trying to bring us up out of Black depression and oppression," Forbes said.

Recent political science graduate Claire Moonen grew up in Delano and had her own reason for choosing the Benedictine liberal arts schools.

"It was either the U of M or St. Ben's-St. John's and SaintBen's-St. John's was significantly cheaper," she said.

The growing costs of travel make "The College Tour" more relevant than ever, says host and executive producer Alex Boylan.

"For the average family to go on a college trip outside of their area, the average cost is $2,500 and so it's very few, a small percentage of people that have the ability to just travel around to every college they want to look at," said Boylan.

Luke Budzyn landed at St. John's after a friend on the Johnnie's football team invited him for a visit. The now rising senior immediately felt a sense of community.

"After a year I said dang, I really made the right decision here because the uniqueness and the community and the small class size and the passion that all the professors have here," Budzyn said.

Another benefit - the natural beauty surrounding the campus.

"I'm able to go after class, take my backpack, take my fishing pole, walk down to the beach and go catch some awesome fish," he said.

The numbers show CSB & JSU grads reel in great careers.

"Ninety percent of the students at both these institutions are graduating in four years. They really try to make that accessible and happen and how many are getting job offers while they're still in school was blowing us away," said Boylan.

The current and former students say they put nerves aside to inspire others by sharing their experiences.

"The College Tour" episode featuring the College of St. Benedict and St. John's University is streaming now on Amazon Prime Video. In this new season, one Wisconsin school is also featured: UW Stevens Point. 

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