4 Benefits of Attending College Close to Home

By Marina Krivonossova on May 12, 2021

As a young adult ready to take on the world, you’re probably also ready to move out of your parents’ house. I know that the closer I got to graduating high school, the more excited I was to leave behind my parents, their house, and my life in my hometown. At that point in my life, it really seemed there were no benefits to attending college close to home. I ended up choosing a college over 400 miles away from where I went to high school, and I thought I had made the best choice of my life. That was until I met my roommate, who was going to school only 70 miles away from her parents’ house.

At first, I wondered why she was content remaining that close to home during her undergrad experience. But a few months later, I was incredibly jealous that she got to be so close to home. So, whether or not you’re excited to move away from your parents’ house for college, I want to share with you four benefits of attending college close to home.

(Image via pexels.com)

1. Homesickness. Even if you’re thrilled at the thought of leaving home, and even if you think you’re ready to be out on your own, you never know when homesickness will strike. When I was out on my own for the first time, I thought I’d never miss home. I thought my life would revolve around my new friends, work, classes, and all things college. But before I knew it, I was calling my mom every other day, texting my sister, and wanting to know what my dad was up to. There’s nothing wrong with missing your home as an adult, and nothing is nicer than being able to easily visit your childhood house and your family when you’re moved out on your own.

2. Friends back home. College is a time when everyone from your hometown seems to go their separate ways. Yet the reality will remain that many people don’t move too far from home after all. And when you attend college close to home, you’re able to visit your childhood friends with ease. After high school, a lot of my friends back home enrolled in the nearby community college, took a year off to work, or stayed local for other personal reasons. They were always meeting up on weekends and going out to parties together, while I felt like I was missing out by living far away. I was incredibly jealous of my roommate, who had the good fortune of being able to see her best friend from her hometown every few weeks, while I was forced to exclusively FaceTime mine.

(Image via pexels.com)

3. Laundry. I’ll be honest — this hadn’t even crossed my mind when I moved away for college. I kind of just assumed that everything would fall into its place, but laundry in the college dorm was hard. Four machines for 50 students is just about as appealing as it sounds. My roommate regularly made her way back home to take care of laundry from the comfort of her own house, but I never got to experience that. But boy, I wish I did! I was the one waking up at 6am on Saturday every week, just to ensure that I could wash my clothes in peace at the dorm.

4. Home cooked meals. College food is a unique experience, that’s for sure. Unfortunately, not all things that are unique are also worthwhile. Living in college, you’ll quickly find that your diet is changing for the worse, and that the Freshman Fifteen are unavoidable. That’s when home cooked meals would usually come to the rescue. But when you’re living far from home, returning for a Saturday night dinner at mom’s isn’t really an option. The best thing you can do is give yourself balance in eating opportunities by attending college close to home. Friday night pizza, Saturday night dinner at home? Sounds like the dream arrangement!

Wherever you choose to attend college, the most important thing to consider is whether you’re making the right choice for yourself. That being said, don’t limit your opportunities by trying to escape as far away from home as possible or by trying to stay as close to your hometown as you can. Weigh out your options, consider all opportunities at your disposal, and make the choice that feels right for you.

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