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Kristina
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PostSubject: College   Sun Nov 18, 2012 6:50 pm

Over the past few weeks I have been looking at transfer information from several different colleges; right now I am at community college and at the end of next semester I will have taken as many classes as I can at this school and it will be time to transfer. The problem I'm having is, I'm not sure how far away from home I want to go when I do transfer. I haven't applied for a transfer yet, I'm waiting until the current semester is over and my grades for my current classes are in, and I'm not sure if I'll even be accepted to the schools I'm thinking of applying to. Right now I have a list of 5 schools, 2 are in-state, 2 are in a neighboring state, and 1 is several states away.

After I graduated from high school, I was going to live on campus at a college in-state, about an hour from home. But I wound up deciding not to, for several reasons. One of the main ones was that my supposed roommates were really nasty to me before we even officially met, and I thought, if we can't even get along now, what will it be like once we live together? But another reason was that I wasn't sure if I was ready yet to live away from home, even though the school wasn't that far away. Now that I'm almost a year and a half into college, I've been thinking a lot about staying on campus once I do transfer. I had the 'moving into a dorm' experience when I went to Florida with my friend in August, and after meeting some of the friends he'd met at school and seeing his campus, it made me kind of regret not living on campus. Plus, I don't like having to drive almost half an hour to my community college on the days I have classes.

I think that living on campus, away from home, would help me mature a lot more because I'd have to do more things for myself, such as laundry, cleaning, and cooking. I also don't want my parents to be constantly telling me what I should be doing, because maybe it's just me but I feel like that happens a lot. But at the same time, I'm worried that at the last minute I'd back out again and decide to just commute to one of the state universities that is close to home, or if I did go to a college farther away, I'd be really homesick the entire time. I also feel that talking about all of this with my parents wouldn't be easy; whenever I mention just living on campus to my mom, she either doesn't respond or tries to change the subject.

I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions or ideas on how to talk to my parents about me thinking of living on campus and going to a school farther away, and if anyone here lived on campus during college, how you got used to being away from home, and what you might of done to help ease homesickness.

I hope I haven't talked too much about this already!
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LIWnut
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PostSubject: Re: College   Sun Nov 18, 2012 7:27 pm

I attended Bible College for 5 years after high school and lived on campus all of those years. My school was over an hour away from home so I really didn't have a choice for the first year as it was required for out of town students. After the first year, we were allowed to rent other accomodations if not living on dorm but I chose not to do that because I found that dormlife was the best part of school.
I must tell you that I had never been away from home before and so moving out and into a dorm so far from home was a very difficult thing to do. My mother and her friend dropped me off and I sat and cried on a hill beside the parking lot as they got into their car and were leaving. A second year student saw me and took me under her wing and showed me around and introduced me to her friends until I heard my new roommate arrive and then I went and met her. It was a very stressful day but I made it. My parents forbade me to come home the first weekend because they knew that if I came home, I wouldn't go back, and they were right. It took 2 weeks for me to feel comfortable and to make new friends and get into the routine of things.
Dormlife was the best part of college because I made so many wonderful friends over my 5 years there. I still have many of those friends today. Our campus was very small and we could get from one place to another very quickly. Some got out of bed 20 min before class. Not me, mind you. There are so many great things about living on campus, I highly recommend it.


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Kristina
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PostSubject: Re: College   Sun Nov 18, 2012 9:37 pm

Thank you for sharing your story, Marilyn. It's good to know that you had a great friend in the girl you met on your first day at college.

Making friends is another thing I am worried about after I transfer. I can be really shy, and a lot of the time I'm too nervous to introduce myself to new people, and I'm uncomfortable around people I don't know. At my community college, it seems like almost everyone who goes there, is there with their best friends from high school, and not interested in meeting new people. And my closest friends are away living at college. So it hasn't been very easy to make new friends at my current school. I'm hoping that if I decide to live on campus, it will be easier to meet people and introduce myself to them, because we will be neighbors, and in clubs together and such. I would be around people who are farther away from home as well, not like at community college where everyone is from nearby, and I hope that they would be more open to meeting new people as well!
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Krissy
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PostSubject: Re: College   Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:14 pm

I understand how you feel.I get nevorse and shy too. I have to get to know a person really well before i start opening up to them.



“Tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it... Yet.” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
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Amy
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PostSubject: Re: College   Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:16 pm

Ingallsfan2008 wrote:
At my community college, it seems like almost everyone who goes there, is there with their best friends from high school, and not interested in meeting new people. And my closest friends are away living at college. So it hasn't been very easy to make new friends at my current school. I'm hoping that if I decide to live on campus, it will be easier to meet people and introduce myself to them, because we will be neighbors, and in clubs together and such. I would be around people who are farther away from home as well, not like at community college where everyone is from nearby, and I hope that they would be more open to meeting new people as well!


This is the number 1 gripe most people have about community college and it is the reason why (for a lot of people, not all) that people are held back from maturing. I know this was certainly true for me....I went for a year and half and it just felt like more high school to me.

It's interesting that you brought this up. My younger son is a Senior in high school so we are going through the great debate right now. Community college or University? My older son is 22 and he is in his 5th year at Western Michigan University. He went in with a clear cut desire to go into the sciences, namely Chemical Engingeering, which is a 5 year program. He has JUST decided to changed his major----thankfully nothing too drastic----to Biochemistry. He has decided that the Engineering aspect of the sciences is not for him, and that's fine. He did go straight from high school to the University, and he's going to come out with quite a student loan debt. But thankfully, with the field he's going into, he will be looking at a decent income (hopefully) right out of the gate, since it's a highly desirable field. In my younger son's case, he's more unsure about what he's going to get into, so we have been thinking more about community college for him just to get his basics. But there are definite drawbacks to community college, which you have mentioned. So it's a tough call. Yes, we'd save a bunch of money, but there is no substitute for the University experience either.

In your case, I think the choice is simple really (just as an outsider looking in, mind you). You have paid your dues...you have spent two not-so-fulfilling years in community college and are feeling the need for more freedom and more opportunity for friendship. The fact that you even mentioned 'homesickness' is kind of a red flag to me....I would veer away from the idea of going out of state. My son is one hour from us....just far enough that he has his own life, and yet we can see each other when the needs arises too. It's the best of both worlds, and your parents really shouldn't have an issue with this, after you'd spend the past two years at home. Unless this is strictly financial and then this is a different story. But you already have two years at CC so you have a head start of what a lot of people spend, so going away might be doable. What are you planning to go into, do you know yet?

This is a very personal choice and hopefully your parents will be supportive whatever you decide to do. If you really want to go away, and you feel like it's your parents who are holding you back (which it kind of sounds that way to me, since your mom seems to be shutting down about this when you want to talk about it), then assure them that it really is easier keeping in touch now than it was back when they went away to college, if they did. There's Skype now! We have never Skyped our son, but know many people who THRIVE with their kids away from college this way. Basically our son really has never suffered from homesickness and we realized early on that he loved his new freedom and we weren't going to push it. The first couple of years were tough on me, but we would see each other about once a month and it was perfect (for him anyway....I would have loved seeing him more often than that. Wink ). Now I am more or less 'conditioned' but I still struggle when I'm feeling like it's been too long, like NOW. I can't wait for him to come home on Wednesday for the holiday. Love


Can I ask what would intrigue you about going to these colleges you've applied for out of state? Would you rather have more freedom than what a college an hour away would give you? Or is there something specific about these schools would offer? All I know is, we couldn't ignore how much cheaper the tuition was for our older son in state, vs. out of state. He has a scholarship, but nothing that major, so it came down to cost of tuition per year.

Good luck in making your decision! Thumbsup



“Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.”

~Mother Teresa
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Kristina
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PostSubject: Re: College   Mon Nov 19, 2012 10:02 am

Amy, I have to agree with you when you said that community college can be like extra years of high school. A lot of professors at the CC I am at now let us use 'cheat sheets' on tests, and a lot of other things that even my high school teachers didn't let us get away with. Then when I have a professor who actually treats us like we're in college, I almost don't know what to do because I'm not expecting to suddenly be treated like an adult.

You were also right when you mentioned the cost of CC versus a University. So far I haven't had to take out any student loans, but take my friend for example who went to a University out of state, which I couldn't believe how expensive it was per year! That's what annoys me, if you're not from the state the University is in, the tuition almost doubles for you. I got a book on scholarships from the library which I have been looking through, and I'm planning to apply for a few different ones.

I haven't officially declared a major yet, but I'm interested in English. I love to read and write, and I would like a major that has to do with big interests of mine. I was originally going to double major in Secondary Education and English, but I realized I'm not sure how good of a teacher I would be, so I've dropped the Secondary Education half of the major, at least.

One of the reasons why I have been looking at a couple of different colleges that are out of state is because I do want the experience of being away from home. I would have to mature because I wouldn't have my parents right near me telling me what to do or making suggestions about a lot of things. Another reason is because I feel like everyone (parents, friends, even my counselor at my CC) expects that I'm going to transfer to one of the state Universities and commute to school. I want to do something different than what I feel like people expect me to do. I also know that a lot of my former high school classmates have gone to the state Universities, and I also would like to go to a school where I'm not going to see people whom I saw nearly every day for four years. I see a lot of former classmates at CC, and that makes it even more like high school because so many of us are at the same college. I even had a class last semester with four or five of my high school classmates.

A friend of mine who goes to one of the state Universities said that she does see a lot of our former classmates on campus, but that also helped her adjust to living away from home, because she was with a few people that she knew. I think having people I knew around when I do transfer would help me as well, since I would be away from home but I would be with some people I know, but at the same time I would like to be with a completely new group of people.

I really appreciate your advice Amy, thank you for it!! Smile I know that I still have some big decisions to make, and I'm glad that I still have some time before having to make them. But I know I'll reread what you wrote, because you gave some advice I know might be able to
help me Smile
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Amy
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PostSubject: Re: College   Mon Nov 19, 2012 8:34 pm

ingallsfan2008 wrote:
One of the reasons why I have been looking at a couple of different colleges that are out of state is because I do want the experience of being away from home. I would have to mature because I wouldn't have my parents right near me telling me what to do or making suggestions about a lot of things. Another reason is because I feel like everyone (parents, friends, even my counselor at my CC) expects that I'm going to transfer to one of the state Universities and commute to school. I want to do something different than what I feel like people expect me to do. I also know that a lot of my former high school classmates have gone to the state Universities, and I also would like to go to a school where I'm not going to see people whom I saw nearly every day for four years. I see a lot of former classmates at CC, and that makes it even more like high school because so many of us are at the same college. I even had a class last semester with four or five of my high school classmates.


I completely understand. But you know, I do have to say that my twin nieces are at Michigan State (which is literally 10 minutes away from them and from me), living in separate dorms on campus, and they LOVE it. They wanted that 'away from home' feel with the convenience of still being 'home'...sort of. And I'll tell you what, they are making all kinds of new friends. Don't get me wrong, they know people from high school there of course, but I think when you go to a university like that (ANY university), you're simply forced into situations where you ARE going to meet new people. A lot of it though has to do with how involved you get--YOU have to be in control of that and figure out where your comfort zone lies. My own son is not involved in a lot and it drives me crazy, but it's his life. He was in the marching band for two years and that was awesome, but he needed to get involved in more after that was over. I notice that he has a main group of friends and that he's not really veering away from them enough. Not that I don't like them, but I would like to see him venturing out into different areas like he did back when he was in band. He is in an off-campus apartment now so that changed everything. Stay ON campus---that would be my big advice.

But to clarify too...you really only need a few GREAT friends, you know? If you're the type of person (like my son seems to be, and how I actually am), where you don't tend to 'collect' a ton of 'nice' friends, but have a few wonderful friends, then that is all you really need, in college and in life. You know? You'll be ok, you just have to have those main people in your life who you can trust with anything and know will always have your back. yes

So, I'm just saying, don't rule out in-state (even close to home) for only the reasons you're suggesting. My nieces are SUPER independent and everyone figured they would go farther away from home. But this is a great fit for them and I am already seeing them growing and maturing, and they are incredibly happy. (and for the record, their mother would not hear of them living at home, even so close to school. She wanted them to have that dorm life experience).

About your major, have you thought about "communications"? Sometimes that's a good major or minor along with English, or even instead of. It's very broad, which is why it's a popular major.

I'm glad I could help you out a little, Kristina! Smile I really feel for anyone going through this college decision-making-process these days!! Yikes Keep me posted on what you decide! Thumbsup

(P.S. You can always PM me if you'd like to. Smile ).
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Kristina
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PostSubject: Re: College   Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:00 am

Amy wrote:
But to clarify too...you really only need a few GREAT friends, you know? If you're the type of person (like my son seems to be, and how I actually am), where you don't tend to 'collect' a ton of 'nice' friends, but have a few wonderful friends, then that is all you really need, in college and in life. You know? You'll be ok, you just have to have those main people in your life who you can trust with anything and know will always have your back. yes

About your major, have you thought about "communications"? Sometimes that's a good major or minor along with English, or even instead of. It's very broad, which is why it's a popular major.

I'm glad I could help you out a little, Kristina! Smile I really feel for anyone going through this college decision-making-process these days!! Yikes Keep me posted on what you decide! Thumbsup



I am the same type of person, I feel like I have a few wonderful friends, but not as many friends that are only acquaintances. And For me that is okay. I don't think I would be as close with any of them if I had a much larger group of friends, and I don't think I'd be happy with that.

My counselor at school has suggested majoring in communications, but I haven't looked into it a lot yet. One of the schools I want to apply to transfer to, one of their most popular programs is Communications and Journalism, maybe I'll keep that in mind Smile

Thank you again for the advice, Amy! Some of the things you've mentioned, I hadn't thought of Thumbsup I'm glad that they've been brought to my attention!
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