Finding the Setting That’s Right for You
Colleges take every form you could imagine, from compact city buildings to spread-out rural campuses. Living in an entirely new environment is thrilling, but it takes time to find the campus location best suited for you.
Here are some tips for finding the right campus setting for you:
Proximity to Home
Some high school graduates want nothing more than to leave their hometown and live the next several years in a different location. Others prefer the convenience of staying close to home. Weigh your options and their expenses before deciding. Since it’s likely you’ll visit home at least once a year for the holidays, remember that travel costs add up.
Close to a Coast
Beaches are one of the most popular spots for college students to hang out. Whether you’re bordering an ocean, river or lake, being close to water is something many prospective students look for. Being landlocked can make you feel uneasy, so tour campuses that’re both near and far from a major body of water.
Additionally, living near a lake or ocean helps regulate the temperature and keeps your campus from getting too hot. If you’re ready to live with a little extra humidity, this tradeoff is important to keep in mind.
The climate of your college is a hugely important influence on campus living. Frigid winters can be a deal-breaker, as are high temperatures. Take your preferences into account but also consider the cost of moving into a new climate. Winters require an umbrella, a parka, snow boots and warm socks. Arid environments mean thinner layers, lighter shoes and breathable fabrics.
When you visit a campus or look at photos online, look for spaces that can host the sorts of outdoor activities you plan on joining. If you’re a rower, look for a large body of water. If you prefer soccer or football, open fields are a must-have. Hiking can be tough to find at colleges in the middle of the country. If you love walking around big cities, then stay away from rural campuses.
Make a list of the activities you plan on participating in and what setting they require. This helps narrow your college list and gives you a sense of the life you can expect on each campus.