I will be going to college soon and since I live in an area with few education options, I have very little idea what I would need to do to get into various colleges. Would it be appropriate to email a professor at a given college and ask them what their program requires/likes to see/what skills most good students have? What is the culture at their school? My parents are college professors and I see the ins and outs of academia every single day and I want my college of choice to have certain attributes that are not always obvious from their website.
Most colleges have this information available on their website. If there is any specific question you have that is not covered on their website, of course it is appropriate to email someone in the department and ask. But if what you want to ask, such as the admission requirements, is already posted somewhere, then by asking this you will come across as someone who does not bother to search on their own before asking them.