Selecting A College: Why It’s Worth Staying Close to Home

In a previous article I outlined some of the do’s and dont’s of the transitional first months of college. In said article, I specifically argued why you should distance yourself from your parents. I’d like to examine a few reasons why you might not want to fly so far away from the nest, hopefully, without contradicting myself too much.

I will maintain that for the first few months, it is wise not to visit home unless an emergency comes up, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the benefits of remaining nearby in the following months after you have fully adjusted to college life.

Save Money

One of the greatest challenges of being in college is saving your money and avoiding as many loans as possible. For some, this may be no issue at all, but if you’re like me, then you’re probably jumping at any chance to cut costs. I chose a college that is only an hour away from home by car. Note: this allows me to maintain a comfortable distance from my parents, but it also allows me to enjoy the occasional visit without setting me back. Plane tickets are anything but cheap, but luckily bus and train tickets are very affordable for most students. A weekend tickets only costs me nine dollars and that covers both ways. The vicinity allows me to save hundreds of dollars on airfare whenever I want to go home. If you’re separated by a number of states you’ll either have to keep trips back home to a limit or you’ll have to spend a lot of money.

Maintain Friendships with High School Friends

There’s no reason you can’t keep in contact with high school friends (graduated or still in school) through Facebook, texts, or phone calls all throughout college, but one of the largest factors in any relationship is relative location. If you keep close to home, it makes visiting with friends over break a lot easier. As I said before, travel costs can inhibit the number of trips you take back home. By no means does this mean you will lose friends, but I think it’s safe to say that you will have a better relationship if you can actually hang out in the same physical location.


It’s a simple, but important reason to consider. The day I moved in to my freshman dorm, I some how forgot all my clothes. Luckily, my parents could drive back and pick them up all in the same night. And yes, I realize most people will never make a mistake like that, but the point of the story is that your parents can help you with any problems or needs you might have with relative ease when they live nearby. Right now, you may be focused on how badly you want to get away from them, but you will miss them and you might need some help from them.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure you can find plenty of reasons to move far away from home. But we’ll leave that argument for another article!

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Ryan Schapals

Ryan Schapals

Ryan Schapals is a senior at DePaul University studying Creative Writing and Psychology. Outside of class, Ryan can be found working in the Pysch Lab or at a local health clinic. When he's not distracted by cat videos, he tries to balance his time between playing guitar, writing prose, and running around the soccer field.