Choosing where you go to college is a major decision early on in your life. You must consider distance from home, the programs offered, the reputation of the school, and of course where you are admitted. Another important decision is what type of location you choose to attend school in. Some people are more drawn to large cities, while others may prefer a quaint college town. There are certainly pros and cons to both locations. Let’s take a look at them:
A large city can offer tons of amenities outside of those on your campus. The dining scene will often be huge while featuring cuisines from all around the globe. There will certainly be more activities or places to visit at nighttime as well. If you happen to attend school in a big city that you are not from, you have ample time (all four years!) to thoroughly explore the culture of that town along with all the various attractions such as icons, museums, shops, gardens, etc. For sports fans, there may likely be a couple of professional sports teams to cheer on alongside the university teams. To top it all off, there is great public transport in many major cities, which makes the need for a car basically nonexistent throughout college.
With a big city comes hefty rent prices. For college students, downtowns may be less than ideal to live in considering the absurd prices to simply rent out a small place in which you can’t even fit all your stuff. This may lead to commuting daily and the need for a car. In addition, parking your car when living in the city can be difficult and pricy in most cases. If you are not a fan of tons of noise or hustle and bustle, a city is also not a great option to attend college.
As opposed to large cities, college towns are more affordable to live in and their “downtown" area is much more quiet and less hectic than big cities. Another pro to attending school in college towns is the unique culture. Every small town has its own identity, and these places have a culture that often revolves around their respective college. The designs and colors around town may also reflect the university. In addition, there may be unique dining locales in college towns as opposed to the typical franchise chains you see in suburbia. Some local dining establishments are often hidden gems.
College towns end up having less amenities than their bigger city counterparts. This could span from anything to attractions, nightlife venues, malls, and an abundance of restaurants. Small towns may also end up being very quiet, especially on weekends when campus is closed and not many people may be around. Therefore, if the town only spans a few miles, there is likely going to be less to do.
Ultimately, there is no best option when it comes to whether you should attend college in a big metropolis or small town. In fact, this is a personalized decision for every student. These are simply the overarching pros and cons to each location, but the best choice is what you feel would be the best fit based on desires and interests. After all, you will be spending four years in that location, so it’s always best to be in the type of place you want.
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