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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Chapel Hill chapter.

“I think we need a break. It’s not you; it’s me. I just need some space. I need to figure things out on my own, be independent.”

These were the lines I spoke to my mom before I left for college. Yep, I used a break-up line with my mom (it definitely helped soften the blow) when I told her that I was going to college out of state. She was mostly fine with it until I told her that I would be going over 500 miles away. That’s right; I left my home state of New York to go to school in North Carolina, and let me tell you it was the greatest decision I’ve ever made! However, there are some pros and cons that most people don’t tell you about. Here are some of the triumphs and trials of being an out-of-state student.

Independence smacks you in the face … in a good way

Being so far away from home means that help is more than a phone call away. Sick at school? Have to take care of yourself. Forgot an essential item? I guess I can live without that water filter. In all seriousness, living so far away forces you to become responsible in a way that you never thought you could be. You’re on the road to adulting.

State Pride is Thing

I’ve never been one to boast about my state, but since leaving it, I’ve become a state nationalist. I’ve found that anything that has the words “New York” on it will be bought immediately. If somebody says they’re from New York, we’re instant best friends. I can’t help but appreciate what I had, and I didn’t realize how much I would miss it until I was gone.

Friends? What are those?

It’s not that you dont have any friends, it’s just that they’re kind of far away. What makes this worse is that it seems like everyone who goes to school in-state knows each other. Like seriously! You all didn’t go to the same high school; how do you know this person?

Eternally Lost

Someone tells you to meet them at *insert place that only people from in-state would know* and you nod, even though you have no clue where that is at. Since you’re not familiar with the area, you depend on your friends to get you outside of the college town, or heck even to get around in it. Most of the time, Google Maps is your best and most trustworthy friend. But never fear! Not knowing where you are going surprisingly is a quick way to make closer bonds with the people you rely on.

Overall, being an out-of-state student has its ups and its downs. Just remember to have fun, try new things and make the most out your college experience. In the words of Drake, “you only live once, that’s the motto.”

A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Maurianna served as a Senior Editor and Marketing Publicity Director before becoming Campus Correspondent. Majoring in English with a concentration in Writing, Editing, and Digital Publication, she combines her love of words and digital design as the founder of a lifestyle blog, Anna Elle Liz, and brand + web design business, Mauri's Markups. When she’s not working, you can find her volunteering at the animal shelter, binge-watching home decor shows, or finding quaint coffee shops around town.