Journey Over the State Line


Erica Bentley (far left), Rocio Handal (left), Milan Washington (middle) and Arryana Sandoval (far right) Seniors who are off to college in another state.

Samin Champion, Staff Writer

College, the personification of adulthood for most teenagers; idealized by family, peers, and the media, college is considered one of the biggest stepping stones into the real world. However, an excellent opportunity for most, if not approached carefully, can easily turn disastrous.

Venturing away from home for college can be intimidating, especially when it seems like everyone else is choosing to stay in a relatively local area.

Based on information collected by user data by the education analytics company Niche Ink Examines, 58 percent of high school graduates go to college within a 100-mile radius of home, compared to the 11 percent who venture 500 miles or more.

While it may seem like everyone is only looking at local options, for some the idea of leaving home and finding themselves through independence, along with the premise of getting a good education is exhilarating enough to push them to attend an out of state college.

Jodeci Tuia, a sophomore who attends Mississippi Valley State University who was originally an Oregon native noted, “ Out of state colleges were attractive because of potential adventure, I saw it as an opportunity to grow and better myself, but it often felt like I was one of the only students looking into out of state options”.

While there are a plethora of benefits, the actuality of embarking life on their own away from their family and out of state can prove to be more challenging than some students like to consider. For many students, they find their emotional well being and wallets under siege.

“The transition was tough, but I’m glad I took a chance and went out of my comfort zone to try something new because Mississippi has really become a home to me and opened me up to people and opportunities I might not have had otherwise,” Tuia added.

When faced with the question, in or out of state, there are more factors that need to be addressed, researched and prepared for than students give thought to.

Genesis Asuega, a current senior at Da Vinci Design who is going to attend the University of Oregon (UofO), stated, “While researching about the college campus and environment does give you an insight to what life might be like there, you’re only getting basic information. I wasn’t able to make an informed decision and get a feel for college life on UofOś campus until I did an on-campus tour.”

A big factor for determining whether students will go to an out of state school is cost. Out of state tuition is relatively more expensive than the college’s in state competition.

“As a senior looking into college options cost definitely was a priority when deciding where I would go, and while Oregon wasn’t attractive in that area it’s definitely worth the cost when you think about it in the sense that you want to make your dreams come true,” Asuega continued.

Students leave behind their in-state financial aid and incur transportation fees and higher out of state rates to attend colleges, but even at a great cost, going to an out of state college can still prove to be advantageous.

“While scary, moving out of state to go to college feels like an opportunity to grow that I might not have if I stay close to home,” said Vaughn Arjavac, a current senior at Da Vinci Communications who is going out of state for college.

Moving to a college out of state can open you to an abundance of benefits from real-world experiences and connections, as well as exposing you to different lifestyles.

“Moving to an out of state college was a journey, one that with time effort and preparation, was one of the best choices I’ve made, ” Jodeci remarked.

   As intimidating as well as emotionally and financially costly it may be, out of state colleges are definitely an option students who are considering college should look into, with ample research about cost, environment, and returns on investments.