Branch or Main Campus?
My dad was relatively okay with the college he heard I was going to... until he realized I would be going to the branch that's only 15 minutes away from home, so I can commute, instead of receiving my education at the main campus of the school and staying in the dorms. I decided to go to the branch because we don't have a lot of money and I can get my whole degree there without the cost of the housing. But he's afraid that not only will I not get the same quality education, I will also not be considered for a job in a city like New York for a publishing company because it will look like a "knock-off" of sorts of the "real deal". Are these real risks?
Branch campuses are a great way to access education from a major university. You should not experience any difference in the quality of the teaching or access to any of the resources of the main campus. What you may gain is a greater sense of community due to potentially smaller classes and greater relationships with faculty and staff.
Internship opportunities are available to those who actively seek them out. You have just as much chance at obtaining a great internship as any other strong candidate. Again, you might have an advantage by having the ability to get to know your professors better and for them to be able to provide meaningful letters of recommendation.
Great question. Use the fact that you'll be commuting from home to your advantage by getting a low demand internship in your field. Truth is, people that have a degree don't get a job because they need experience. Those with experience need a degree to get a job. It's frustrating but it can be done. Make a plan for your life, do your research in your industry and find somewhere to get into your industry asap with a 15 - 20 hour per week internship. Also emphasize to your Dad that it's up to YOU to get what you need from your college, not what college you go to. Make a plan for your life and move towards that with strategy and consistency.
Madison -- I think it is really great that you are thinking about helping with expenses for your family by choosing to go to a branch campus. Most courses are of the same quality -- whether at a branch or main campus, as that is a requirement of the accrediting body. The key to look for is what institutional name will be on your diploma when you graduate. For example, there is a Penn State University campus in Erie, PA (where I am originally from) separate from the main campus in State College, PA. However, students who do all 4 years on the Erie Campus receive a diploma which is from Pennsylvania State University. No employer looking at that diploma would know they graduated from the branch campus rather than the main campus. I hope this helps.