Dr. Ray’s Answer
For an undergraduate student the quality of a university's psychology department probably matters less than the overall quality of the school. Fortunately for you the Midwestern states have many fine public universities, including the University of Illinois in your home state. There are also many fine private schools but most are very expensive, and I think publicly funded schools are a better bargain. I encourage you to apply for financial assistance whichever route you take.
If you eventually decide to pursue an advanced degree you would still have to have an undergraduate degree, so you do not have to make that decision now.
I can't answer your questions about the specific environments but suggest that you visit a few campuses in your area to get a better feel for what it's like to live like a college student.
I wish you the best in your educational pursuits.