As with most things in life, there is no one right way to go to college. Everyone wants to get something different out of those four years, and everyone’s experience is unique.
One of the things that has the biggest impact on your experience is whether you stay at home or move out for college. Some people’s decisions are made for them; their course might only be offered somewhere out-of-state, or even out of the country. For others, other factors will come into play.
Moving away from home for college is a watershed moment in life; where we become an adult for the first time and gain a level of independence our younger selves spent years dreaming about. Don’t be afraid of taking that step.
Here are a few reasons why moving out for college is a great idea.
All the New People
When we are comfortable, it’s hard to force ourselves out of our comfort zone and into something new. And why wouldn’t it be? When we have friends we love, places we like to go, and the things we love to do, it seems counterintuitive to just walk away from all that and start again somewhere else. But you need to think of it as an opportunity, rather than loss: with a bit of effort, you’ll be able to stay in touch with all your old friends but staying at home won’t allow you to make new ones. Only moving away to college can do that.
All the Freedom and Independence
If you stay at home for college, the temptation to still have your mom and dad do all of your laundry, cooking and so on will be so strong as to be insurmountable. And we get it – the idea of doing all that for yourself sounds like a whole load of seriously boring chores. But trust us, these are important skills to learn and the feeling of independence you get from learning to look after yourself just can’t be bought.
You’ll also learn to manage your own money, probably for the first time. This is an essential life skill and the earlier we learn it, the better! Paying your bills, doing your grocery shopping and paying your rent are all things you will need to do after college. Learning to do them while still in college just gets you ahead of the game, and lets you make all your mistakes while the stakes are still relatively low.
If you’re worried about student loans and getting into student debt, click here for Elfi’s loan calculator.
All the Horizon Broadening
And we don’t just mean the geographical ones. Going away to college broadens your horizons because you meet people outside of your usual sphere; people from different backgrounds, who have different life experiences and opinions from you. This is almost always a good thing, as broadening our experience of the world helps us to learn and understand more about how the world works. You’ll also have experiences that you’re almost guaranteed to miss out on if you stay at home.