Your Senior year of High School can be one of the most exciting, confusing, exhilarating and terrifying years of your life. Not only are you closing an incredibly important chapter of your life, but you are also making huge decisions about where your future will take you, and that can lead to some intense decision making.
It feels like forever ago that I graduated high school, but when I did I had a solid plan in place. After a missions trip to Kenya, my heart changed and I decided to alter all my plans at the last minute, but I am so grateful I did! I chose to move a thousand miles away from home and go to college in a place where I literally knew nobody, and it was one of the best decisions I ever made.
Since then, a lot of high schoolers have asked my advice on going out of state for school, so I wanted to share the top three reasons I believe you should go away to college.
1. You can truly start fresh.
A lot of teenagers tend to think that you really figure out who you’re going to be while in high school, but that couldn’t be more false. College is the place where you try new things, learn new things and meet new and different people. When you decide to attend college close to home, or somewhere you know a lot of people from high school, it can feel difficult to break out of your high school persona. People will know you, so they will assume you are the same old girl or guy. When you go away to college, you can be a different person, and truly figure out who you want to become. You have a genuine chance to be different and let that shape who you will become.
2. You will gain a different kind of independence.
Personally, I felt like I was a pretty independent person when I graduated high school, but going over a thousand miles away from home, made me realize just how much learning I still had to do. My Mom had always been the type of parent who made me figure things out for myself, but was always there if I needed help or had questions. I am forever grateful that she did that, because it made me try to figure things out on my own before running to her. When you go away to college, not only will you start becoming the person you want to be, but you will start becoming more and more independent. Your parents and family won’t be there to do things for you, so you’ll have to figure them out. You will truly begin to step into adulthood, which can be a good and bad thing!
3. You make lifelong friends.
Going to a school where I knew nobody, and my family was so far away was honestly terrifying. When I dropped my Mom off at the airport, the day before orientation started, I was overcome with a sense of fear, but then almost immediately it settled and became excitement. College is most often the place where you will make lifelong friends. When you go away to school and your old friends aren’t there to fall back on, you become more genuine in the way you make friends. I made some of my very best friends in college, and I don’t believe I would have made those same kind of friendships if I had stayed close to home. I couldn’t go home very often, so I started to form my own little family at school, and it was the best thing.
There are so many other reasons to go away to college, those are just a few that I believe truly stand out. Don’t get me wrong, going away to college is not for everyone, but if you are even thinking about it I would encourage you to try it out for at least one semester. I’m not going to lie and say it was easy, there were times where I was so homesick I would just curl up in a ball and cry, but I never let it stop me. After four years, and countless classes, I came out of that place with the sweetest friendships, a growth in myself that I don’t believe would have happened without that school, a great education and an incredibly hot husband.
Go away to college, try something new, be a different person, and don’t let fear hold you back from anything!