When you think about going to college in a state different from your own you probably feel one of two ways. A) You definitely want to go to a college far away from home or B) you never want to go to an out of state school.
Depending on which boat you’re in, here are a few things to think about before attending a university that’s farther from home.
1. You’ll experience new beginnings.
There’s nothing like starting a new chapter in your life by moving to a different place. You’ll make friends from other parts of the country and begin to discover a place that you’ve never lived in before. As sad as it is, leave behind your high school days for new friends, new places, and a new home. Whether you had a wonderful time in high school or you’re really glad for it to be over – this is a fresh start.
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2. You’ll find independence.
As you settle into the routine of your daily life at college you’ll learn to adjust to a new schedule. You’ll be the one responsible for doing laundry, getting good grades, and feeding yourself. Most likely you won’t be visiting home on the weekends, and on some breaks, you might have to stick around campus instead of going home. Sometimes in the moment that isn’t very fun but slowly, you’re learning to figure it out on your own. Since home isn’t close you’ve got to adjust to what it takes to live on your own and in that you’ll learn how to take care of yourself.
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3. You’ll grow up.
Inevitably you’ll get a flat tire, run out of money, or feel generally alone because your family is at least a few hundred miles away. But that’s okay. You’ll get through all those types of experiences and learn from them. Pretty soon you’ll look back and realize that you’ve come a long way and you did it (mostly) on your own. You’re an adult now.
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4. You’ll plant roots.
The sights that were once unfamiliar to you when you first arrived on campus will start to feel like home. You'll find a whole new community at college that will become invaluable. In fact, when people ask you where you live, you might give them the name of the town your college is in. The lines will start to blur as you feel more familiar with your new place. The faces, people, and things will become your own.
5. You might end up staying.
You’ll graduate and realize that in a lot of ways you’ve come to love this place. It might even be your favorite! And as awesome as it would be to move back to your hometown, you are kind of a different person now. You’ve made lifelong friends here at college and many will stay in the area after graduation, taking advantage of the many opportunities offered so close to D.C. You’ve joined a church that makes you feel like family. Besides, all you have to do it hop on a plane and then you’ll be home with your family! So why not stay and enjoy for it for a little while longer what’s come to be yours.
Despite how you may feel at the moment, God will use your time at college to shape you into the person he means you to be. Sometimes that means a college right in your home town, and sometimes it means attending a college a plane ride from home.
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