Why I’m Staying Local For College

It’s okay to stick around for a bit.


Moorea Atkins

local college can be more efficient.

Starting my college search was really hard, as it is for nearly everyone. I had no idea what I wanted to do, where I wanted to go, or even where to start. I remember the thought of college seemed so overwhelming until I did some careful thought and consideration. Without further ado, here’s three things that helped me decide why staying local was the best option for me.


1. Location

The first thing that I thought about was if I wanted to leave Missouri. While the thought of leaving for another state does sound fun on one level, another part of me doesn’t want to leave. I’ve been lucky enough to have traveled to many places across the country, yet every time, after a couple weeks on the road, I wanted to go back home to the familiarness of the Lou. St. Louis is great because it does have quite a few colleges nearby like Webster, Maryville, or Lindenwood. Even as you go out of the city, some great state schools are only a few hours away like Truman, Mizzou, or Missouri State. 


2. Student Debt Loans

I knew pretty much immediately that paying off student debt loans years after college was something I did not want to do. So that meant I had to figure out how I could reduce the cost, and that’s where I realized the genius of staying local. In-state tuition is very affordable in most state schools, but I had already decided I wasn’t interested in state schools. After some research I realized room and board can be expensive. Commuting to a school closeby can reduce costs dramatically, so I’m opting to commute at least for my first year.



Ok, here me out here – I enjoy staying put every once in a while! It’s not that I’m nervous about making it on my own, but I do like it here. I like being familiar with people and places. If I’m being honest, I really don’t like change all that much. The idea of moving out of town is just not something I’m looking for yet. And for anyone else like me, that’s perfectly okay. 


So logically I have chosen a university nearby. One right across the street from my high school, in fact: Maryville University. I plan to study a combination of art and technology (Interactive Design) there, and to be quite honest I couldn’t be more excited. Looking at colleges can be really difficult, but I think if you are honest with yourself and what you want, you can narrow your options down quickly. There are many great options out there, you just have to decide what is best for you.