A lot of people debate the pros and cons of moving away or staying near home after high school.

For staying home, you get the benefits of having family near (if you're on good terms with your family), which means home-cooked meals and possibly not having to pay for housing; the familiarity of your hometown; and you get to remain near any friends you have.

However, staying home can also mean having to put up with your family and not being able to branch out from the life you had in high school. Moving away, on the other hand, means you are left deal with any problems you face without the help of your family and also that you have to eat occasionally less-than-pleasant dining hall food; but you do get to be on your own and branch out from your high school experience.

Personally, I feel that moving away from home is the better choice of the two. My hometown is four and a half hours away from Missouri State, or 275 miles. At first, I was really nervous about being so far away from home. My mom is one of my best friends, and I have three little sisters and a myriad of little cousins that I love to be around and often get paid to watch.

Besides family and an easy source of money, my parents and grandparents are all excellent cooks, and most of my meals were delicious and homemade. That being said, I really don't regret moving away from home. Distancing myself from my hometown has allowed me to really open up and embrace new opportunities, and while I often miss the food, I wouldn't trade it for the friends I've made and the experiences I've had, away from my hometown.

The near-five-hour drive sucks, but the distance is worth the person you'll become with it.