I’m moving to a big city in the middle of the state. Some call that a blessing, but my initial reaction was: don’t make me go.
I grew up in a small, dreamy beach town in North Carolina where my biggest worry was making sure I wasn’t too sunburnt throughout the summer. When it came to applying to colleges, location was my main priority, but it became difficult to find schools located directly on the beach. So, I ended up choosing a really good school—but it was two hours inland. At first I was ecstatic, thinking of all the ways I could decorate my dorm with cute comforters and a shiny new Keurig, but, as summer approached, it hit me that my time on the beach was limited. And then I started to panic. If you’re anything like me, your college town is subpar compared to where you grew up, and this scares you.
It took some time, but eventually I became excited about my big move. Here’s why you should be too:
1. It’s a change of scenery.
Okay, so maybe you can’t walk to the same coffee shop you’ve been going to since you were five, but a new town provides new adventures and alternative places to explore. There are different sights to see, activities to do, and people to meet. And hey, you may be surprised to find that you love the Starbucks down the street from your dorm just as much.
2. New people.
We all love having a set group of friends; an already established support system that will love you no matter what, but sometimes, hanging out with the same people everyday can get a little boring. A new town provides you the opportunity to branch out and meet all kinds of people. You can make contacts and friends with people who are completely the same or completely different from you—your choice. You now have the chance to switch it up and see which people you really do—and don’t mesh with.
3. You can really figure out where you want to live.
If you’ve lived at the beach your entire life, moving to a big city may be good for you. Moving allows you to experience all parts of the country—or world—and figure out which lifestyle you enjoy most. This is a time to decide whether you truly love living on island time or prefer the energy of a large metropolis. This, in effect, can help determine what you want to do with the rest of your life and where you want to reside.
4. Every town is unique.
Okay, so most of us aren’t moving to the other side of the world, but cultures and traditions are different no matter where you go—whether it’s one hour away or ten. Every place you visit has something unique solely to that area. Whether it’s the southern charm and hospitality or it’s the world’s largest gumball machine, each town has something it’s proud of. These places aren’t boring. Go find what makes each place so special; you won’t regret it.
5. Opportunity is calling.
While leaving your oasis can be difficult and extremely challenging, it’s rewarding in the end. There are so many chances and opportunities out there that it would be a crime to pass them up. College gets you one step closer to finding your dream job, making amazing memories, and figuring out the rest of your life. Fall in love with your school and your town. You won’t regret it.
photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/44461337@N06/5334850250/ photographer: Graham