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I am considering my colleges for the future and there is a few places that I have in mind but I am not sure that I will make the right choice. I have an opportunity to go to college here in louisiana and have some of my tuition paid off. My mom believes I should go here but I dont know. I want to go to a college in hawaii because that is where my girlfriend is going to go. I really want to be with her but I also don't really want to be in debt for the rest of my life. ( I want to become a nurse) Should I just settle down here in Louisiana or take a chance and go to Hawaii with my girlfriend?

#college-selection #college #medicine #career #relationshipstruggle

Thank you comment icon Long distance is hard, and is something I'm going through right now. But I believe you shouldn't base college decisions off where your friends or significant others go. What if something happens and you guys break up? This is a huge growth period for you as an individual. I agree with the others that you should make a pro/con list work through these issues yourself. In the end it's your life and you'll be the one making the decision, regardless of what us internet strangers say. Good luck! and take some time to think through it slowly. Vicky

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John’s Answer

To add on to Janet's answer, this is a common struggle for students entering college. My highschool girlfriend was a year or two older than me and also moved across the country for school. I initially thought this would be my path too, I was in the midst of my college search and had centered my ideas around being close to her. We broke up before I made my college decision, and I ended up staying close to home and leaving college without any debt. Obviously this is a personal decision, but I would advise against following a significant other to Hawaii, it's a big commitment. Maybe a pro-con list or thinking through your priorities would be helpful. Something else to consider generally is how far you want to be away from home. My friend went to college in Hawaii and could only bring a few possessions because he was flying to-and-fro, whereas I went to school a few hours from where I grew up, so I was able to take any of my belongings that I could fit in my car. This also allowed me to return home more often, my friend who went to school in Hawaii often did not come home for Thanksgiving because the travel time would've eaten up a lot of his break.
Thank you comment icon Thank you, John for the advice. Justin
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Kim’s Answer

Young love is very strong, and always feels like it is "forever." A relationship that cannot handle a separation of this magnitude isn't destined to last. The most important thing you can do at this stage of your life is learn to stand alone. That means going to a school where perhaps you don't know anybody, and getting in the groove. Usually it's girls that I am telling this to. But, it's important for guys too. Create your identity, as an individual. Finish your education. Learn to stand alone both emotionally and financially. It's great to enter life knowing that whatever comes at you, you can handle it!

If you choose to go to Hawaii, and then break up, then what?

Nobody can make this decision for you. Just know that many people before you have been in this situation. I wish I had gone away to college, rather than commute from home, as, by the time I graduated, I had not matured socially. However, college was less expensive then. Joining the military also would have been a good move for me, and I'd have gotten paid for the experience! Ask yourself what you hope to get out of college, and where and how you can best accomplish that. Then, you will have your answer.
Thank you comment icon Thank you, Kim for the advice. Justin
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Scott’s Answer

My son is 18 and is looking at colleges so we have spent a lot of time having discussions around this. As others have already mentioned, college is expensive. The current loan system is terrible for so many people who come out of school saddled with debt and find it difficult to pay off. I am 47 and finally paid off a 25k loan. You can easily come out of school with twice or three times that amount now compared to when I went to college. Ultimately, you have to decide what is best for you but if I were answering this question for my son, I would tell him that making a decision about your future based on where his girlfriend was going to college is a risky proposition. This is your future and you need to be in charge of it.
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Janet’s Answer

This is a hard decision to make but I will tell you this one thing. You do not want to come out of college with a lot of debt. I was fortunate enough to leave college with very little debt because I went to a junior college for 2 years and then a state college. The BEST thing my parents ever did for me was to sit down with me and show me what I could afford and what it would look like after college. This allowed me to follow a career that I loved and not take any job, just to make money and pay off my debt. My husband did not have this same advice and racked up a lot of college debt that we finally paid off less than a year ago (he is 40!). You don't want to start your life off with that hanging over your head. It's VERY hard to get out from under that debt. Listen to your mother, you will someday be very happy you did. This will allow you to follow a career path that you enjoy!
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much, Janet! Justin
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Brianna’s Answer

Hi Justin, college decisions are definitely a big choice to make in your life. I think that it's helpful to emphasize on the career you want, and see which program at both schools give you the best option in terms of learning. I understand that long distance relationships are difficult, but I think you should first consider the options that you have and think about the pros and cons of it. Like Priya mentioned, making a list may help you relief some of the stress about choosing which college, but in the end it's up to you to make the decision that you think you will enjoy.
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Priya’s Answer

Hi Justin, maybe make a pros-cons list or talk to an adult that can be more impartial to the decision. Ultimately it is up to you and what you believe is good for you in the long run. Your relationship, as well as your finances and debt are great considerations to make. Keep gathering information and adding to your pros-cons list, as well as maybe discussing with some trusted adults in your life. Remember, you do not have to take anyone's advice, but use them as points to think about!
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