6 Ways To Fight The Out-Of-State Student Struggles

I grew up in South Florida and spent my entire life there, with my family by my side. When I got accepted into my dream school, UCLA, I jumped at the chance to move across the country and pursue my dreams. But being so far away from home does have many downsides, as I've had to deal with homesickness once in a while. With time, I've learned a few tips to make going to a college 3,000 miles away from home, not so scary anymore.

1. Plan FaceTime Dates

Being able to FaceTime can make talking to people from far away much more personal. Keeping in touch with your family or friends will help you feel as if they are still a big part of your life. Video calls are a good reminder that there are alternate ways to stay connected with your dear ones, even through long distance. 

2. Keep Yourself Busy

When you start to feel homesick, go treat yourself to a bite of ice cream or grab dinner with a friend. Your friends may even be feeling the same way about missing home! You can encourage one another and develop a strong support system. Just don't be alone and try to stay active! Surround yourself with positivity. 

3. Join Clubs On Campus

Joining a club will help you meet people that share a common interest with you. By becoming involved in clubs that you are interested in, you'll have a better chance in creating friendships with people who have similar values to you.

4. Bring A Piece Of Home With You

Print out lots of pictures of your loved ones to hang up around your dorm or apartment as a reminder of the happiness at home. If you're ever starting to miss home, you can curl up with your favorite stuffed animal or look at the pictures all around your room to cherish great memories. 

5. Plan Trips To Go Home In Advance

Check your syllabus at the beginning of each semester or quarter to try to fit in time for a family visit. Your family could either come to you, or you can go visit home! Planning a reunion in advance will make flights much cheaper and also give you the time to work ahead so that you can enjoy the time you do get, with the people you love.

6. Focus On Yourself

Being away from home, without the influence of your parents and family may be a great time to discover more about yourself, your interests, and what you want in life. Take this time as way to become more independent and focus on school, extracurricular activities, and relationships. The experiences you have in college can lead to attaining future life goals and dreams.

Going to school far away from home can be a little scary at times, but so many out-of-state students are in the same boat. Keep in touch with people, invest in your interests, and take this time away to attain your dreams. College is only four years, so make the best of it!