This question, I believe, does not get asked enough. In the grand scheme of things, your college years are a very small portion of your life – but this small portion has a very significant impact on the many years after it. I think it is safe to say we all know that the economy isn’t as great as it used to be, and I’m sure you’ve heard, “It’s not what you know it’s who you know”. That quote is what got me looking at the location of different universities and how that related to building my future.
If finding a good job after college comes down to whom you know, I wanted to put myself in a place that I could constantly be meeting new professionals and have access to many different networking opportunities. Consistently, Atlanta has been a rapid growing city in regards to many professional fields and industries. It is home to countless numbers of conferences, conventions, trade-shows and other special events. To me that sounded like endless opportunities to shake hands with professionals, but also to be able to really learn about the industry and what the latest trends are within that profession.
Location also comes into play when you look at things like traffic, safety, and entertainment. I can also guarantee you that there are very few people that would love going to a university that had tons of traffic, a high crime rate, and had nothing to offer as far as fun things to do around it. If you are thinking about living at home and commuting, traffic is going to be one of the biggest things you need to look at. You don’t want to sit longer on the interstate in traffic than you do in a classroom. Safety is something you all should be considering. Find out about the campus security, the response times to incident reports, and just observe the area around the campus to estimate a safety level. Entertainment, I think, is very important to the college experience. If you are continuously stressed about homework, tests, assignments, projects, and whatever else you may find to stress about you will not enjoy your time. Ask students what they do for fun, look for different things around the campus that you would enjoy.
Location matters for a number of reasons, many more than I have discussed here today. I highly encourage you to start considering that factor when making your choice for where to get your education.
For me, Kennesaw State University was the perfect fit. I talked about the benefits that come with living near Atlanta. It is a hotbed of opportunity in relation to networking, internships, jobs, and entertainment. Kennesaw State University, however, also provided me with an area that doesn’t have tons of traffic. I normally can get wherever I need to go with no problems. I cannot stress enough how simple location may seem but how important it really is. Find a place that provides you with an area that meets you needs and expectations.
***If you have any questions or comments about this article please feel free to contact me personally at CBuxton@Kennesaw.edu****