Monday, October 14, 2013

Attending A College Close to Home

  With Family at Como Zoo-
I’m Emma Wheeler, a junior at Macalester College majoring in Hispanic Studies and Environmental Studies, with a concentration in Community and Global Health. This year also marks my third year working in Admissions, doing everything from being an office assistant to coordinating our sampler events. I live on campus during the school year, but my home is in Hopkins, a suburb about a half hour from Macalester. That allows me to share a bit about what it’s like to attend a college in your hometown.

For all of you out there hesitating to apply to Macalester because it’s too close to home, let me put your minds at ease. It may be close in distance, but you’ll feel as if you’re in an entirely new world at Mac. If you’re worried about your parents visiting too often or not being able to have a “real college experience,” know that both of these concerns are easily addressed.

Talk to your parents! Schedule times for them to visit. They’ll soon learn that you have so much to do and experience in college that planning ahead for visits is necessary. As far as getting a true college experience, well, yes, you’re close to home, but knowing the area well can be a real positive. I’ve had many chances to show my friends around the Twin Cities and let them see my favorite spots. We’ve also discovered some new places together. 

Besides, one of the most important things about college is to gain new experiences and that has much less to do with where you are than who you are with and at Macalester you will be with the most interesting people. My classmates and professors are continually pushing me and helping me see things from a whole new perspective. That IS the college experience and it is more than possible to have that even when you’re only a half hour away from home.

So for any of you who are feeling apprehensive about staying close to home, I’d encourage you to talk to some people who have already done it and see what they have to say. Don’t be too quick to dismiss the idea. Remember, it’s not a negative thing to stay in your hometown when your destination is Mac!

At Winter Carnival