Moving Away to Attend College

Making the decision to move away to school can be really difficult. Here are some ideas for how to help you make your decision:

  • Write a list of all the advantages and disadvantages of going away to school;
  • Talk through your list with family and friends;
  • Take your time with the decision.

Remember that the decision to move away isn’t permanent. You can always transfer schools if you are unhappy and many people move back home after they graduate from school. But just give adjusting to school some time – it takes a while to get used to a new place and new life.

  • Leaving home. It’s natural to have mixed feelings about leaving home. You can also check out the Leaving home fact sheet for additional information.
  • Living on or off-campus. Many people who choose to move away for school decide to live on campus, especially for the first year. Regardless of whether you live on or off-campus, a new living situation can also be both exciting and stressful.
  • Making the transition easier. It might help to remember that you aren’t alone. Other people who have just moved probably feel the same way. You might find it helpful to talk to other students.
  • Give it time. Moving away from home and starting college is a big move. It’s important to give yourself time to get used to the change.
  • Have something to look forward to. Sometimes it can be helpful to plan ahead so that you have something to look forward to
  • Create your own space. Making a space of your own can help you to bring a bit of home to campus life.

Acknowledgement: This fact sheet was originally developed by youth and staff at, a website that helps teens get through tough times. 

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