Sunday, September 27, 2009

They Said It. . .

Some students sound off with advice on how to cope with distance in college

My advice would be to find a school that's right for you based on what's most important to you. If you are thinking about going to a school far away take a step of faith and do it! You'll grow a lot from it and learn more about yourself.”

-Caitie Compton, religion sophomore, Baylor University, Murrieta, California


“If you really love the school that you’re going to go to, then get as involved as possible.  Get in a bunch of clubs and continue to pursue the things you did in high school.  Get as involved as possible because then you don’t think about being home or family because you’re always doing something.”

-Tim Marquis, meteorology junior, University of Oklahoma, Appleton, Wisconsin


“I would definitely encourage it because you can always go back home whenever you want.  It’s a really growing experience.  You grow up a lot because you have to be self dependent.  Mom and dad aren’t there to solve your problems and that can only help you.”

-Kyle Burke, chemical engineering junior, University of Oklahoma, Thousand Oaks, California


“I would definitely get plugged in.  Also you need to be open to friendships and not closed off to people.  It sounds cliché but that’s what you need to do.  Stick to your convictions as well.”

-Lindsay Lanthripe, early childhood education sophomore, University of Oklahoma, Diamond Bar, California


“I would say just make sure that there are people there that you can really connect with and build community with; people that are on the same page as you with the same desires and goals for life.

-Sammi Fuller, early childhood education sophomore, University of Oklahoma, Diamond Bar, California

Fear Factor #1: Distance

            One of the main dilemmas that students face when deciding on a college is distance away from home.  Being far away from home can be a very taxing thing emotionally on some students.

            “It can be really difficult to be that far away from your primary support group,” said Barton Turner, licensed psychologist and instructor of psychology at the University of Oklahoma.  “If you come from a relatively intact and close family I think it can be difficult to be that far away.  The physical separation can be hard.”

            The main problem with distance from home is that there is not a set formula or standard for how the human mind will respond to being so far away from the primary support group.  It is entirely dependent upon the personality and nature of an individual. 

            “I think it’s something you have to know yourself well enough to know if that’s something that you might be able to tolerate,” said Turner.  “I think there are some people that are independent minded enough and their personality could go across the country and go to school.  They’ll have some adjustment problems for sure.  Then there are some people who need to stay fairly close for how they are wired.”

            For those that are not well suited for going a great distance away from home for school but do it anyway, a vicious cycle develops.  Not being surrounded by a strong social network cause students to withdraw into themselves, which causes them to feel lonelier, says Turner.

            “As you feel socially isolated, people will isolate themselves further, so they don’t pursue opportunities,” said Turner.  “It’s a cycle that leaves you feeling pretty depressed.” 

            However, as sad and depressing as this sounds, loneliness can certainly be avoided for those who are going far away from home for college.  Enter Sammi Fuller and Lindsay Lanthripe.

Sammi (above, in glasses) and Lindsay, sophomores at the University of Oklahoma, are from Diamond Bar, California and have been best friends since birth.  They live around the corner from each other, were home-schooled together and attended the same high school.

            Upon graduation, both decided to attend the University of Oklahoma.  Of course, it was for the same reason.

            “When my brother at OU, he was a part of a ministry on campus, the Baptist Student Union, and I really wanted to be a part of it too to get trained so that I could grow in my walk with God,” said Lindsay.

            “I would come with Lindsay to visit her brother and when we came, we would stay with older girls in the dorms and I just loved living in the dorms and getting to see how they related to girls and what they were living for,” said Sammi.  “I really wanted to receive spiritual training in college and I felt that the Baptist Student Union could give that to me.”

            Lindsay and Sammi say that it was hard at times to be away from their friends and family their freshman year but making friends really made things fun and easy to adjust. 

            “It’s hard because I’m playing this balancing act like when I’m at home I love it and miss my friends here and when I’m here I miss my friends at home and my family,” said Lindsay.

            ““Last year was really hard but was also fun cause we got to know our friends’ families and we could go home with them,” said Sammi.

            No matter what the case, everyone is going to experience some sort of adjustment pains.  It’s true of students who stay close to home and especially of those that come to school from far away.  The biggest key to getting through that time period is to surround yourself with people like yourself that you can share life with. 

            “I would say just make sure that there are people there that you can really connect with and build community with; people that are on the same page as you with the same desires and goals for life,” said Sammi.  

Sunday, September 20, 2009

They Said It. . .

“Yeah the economy kept me looking at colleges in-state instead of going out of state.”

-Cooper Duncan, mechanical engineering freshman, University of Oklahoma

“I don’t pay for my own schooling and I am the fifth of five children who have all gone to college before me.  Therefore, my father has shoveled out a lot of money to let us go to college and be educated.  With the economy in shambles and tuition rising, it creates stress on him.  It’s stress on him that I feel is caused by me.  But it just helps me appreciate him more as a dad.”

-Amanda Lambert, economics sophomore, University of Oklahoma

“Well the economy didn’t really affect me because I got scholarships and my parents’ income was at least decent enough.”

-Luke Brigan, electrical engineering freshman, University of Oklahoma

“The economy didn’t affect me at all in coming, but I do know a lot of people that had to go to community colleges.”

-Blake Corgan, University College freshman, University of Oklahoma

"Demand for a Baylor education continues to be strong. Not only did Baylor enroll a near-record number of freshmen this fall (second only to last year), the University also received a record number of applications — somewhere in the neighborhood of 31,000 high school seniors last year applied. And the continued growth has not hurt the class of 2013’s academic quality, either; officials reported an increase in the freshman class’ academic index, which measures a combination of class rank and SAT/ACT scores. Perhaps more exciting is the continued growth in minority enrollment; a record 35% of first-year students are minorities, up from last year’s record 31%. Over the past four years, minority enrollment among freshmen has increased 62%, making Baylor the second-most diverse school in the Big 12!”

-Baylor Proud Blog

We have not seen an adverse affect at this point. Student discretionary spending in my opinion likely will be impacted given the possibility of limited or reduced available family resources. Meaning fewer trips home for visits, clothes shopping, eating out, ect…”  


“I believe this recession has had an affect everyone. But to your question, I think some families of juniors and seniors in high school might be or have been reconsidering there list of potential universities, and might opt for schools closer to home or even Community Colleges as a short-term alternative. As the economy begins to stabilize and recover in 2010, we could see a change. I think if you were an upper-class student who was not performing well academically or on academic probation, you might reconsider at this point in your pursuit of your education.”


-Chris Krause, Assistant Vice President of Campus Services, Baylor University

College and the Recession

            The United States is in the worst recession since the Great Depression and no one is more affected in an indirect way than high school students who are looking at heading off to college after graduating.

            “Students and parents face the worst economy in a generation as they begin the college search process,” said US News editor Brian Kelly in a video on the magazine’s website. 

            The initial group to be dramatically affected by the economy has been the college class of 2013, the new freshmen in colleges across the country.  While older students at colleges and universities have been affected, this class was in the search and application process when the worst of the recession was happening.

            “My parents told me that my dad had lost his job and if I was going to go out of state for school then I would have to get more scholarship money than originally planned,” said Walter St. Denis, energy management freshman at the University of Oklahoma.  “Thankfully I was able to get some help.”

            While other freshmen weren’t affected personally by the economy, they knew friends and relatives who were.  There are not many college students who do not know someone who has had to find an alternate route to school.

            “One of my friends got a big scholarship to OSU [Oklahoma State University] but had to go to TCC [Tulsa Community College] due to the economy,” said Cooper Duncan, mechanical engineering freshman at the University of Oklahoma.

            Those that are able to come to college without a second thought are definitely lucky and blessed to be in that position.  Many people are of the opinion that school is the best place to be during the recession because there is really no point in looking for jobs that do not exist.

            “With the economy down, it’s actually the best time to be in school because you don’t want to be out looking for a job,” said Barrett Powers, political science sophomore at the University of Oklahoma.  “If you can afford to be in school, you should stay in as long as you can.”

             University employees also feel the pressure of the economy as it cuts budgets and restricts what each college within the university can do.  Chris Borthick, academic advisor at the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Oklahoma says they suffer right along with the students without going to class.

            “The thing about all this [the recession] is that every college is hit with the problems as well because our budgets are reduced, so we are hit in our own way,” said Borthick.

            The recession has taken a turn for the better and economists and the general public hope that things get better in the near future.  However, many people still feel that there is reason to be cautious and frugal with money.

            “We’re still in a recession and it’s very likely we could all have to go back,” said Blake Corgan, University College freshman at the University of Oklahoma.  “My dad could lose his job at any time.”

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Let's Hit the Road!

Alrighty everyone, let's get started.  Those pictures I posted were part of a class assignment and really don't have anything to do with college searches.  But they were fun to do and talk about so check those out if you want!

I found this video today from US News and World Reports about America's best colleges.  Check it out!  It's got some great information.  There are also several other videos below it that you should look at as well.  I'll probably look at some of them at another time.  

Sunday, September 13, 2009

PWOP- My faith is very important to me.  It is the driving force behind everything I do and how I live my life.  This verse here, James 5:16, is the verse that I am currently memorizing.  It talks about being accountable to one another about things that are going on in your life.  It says that by doing this, you will become closer to these people that you share life with because you have an understanding of what they are going through in their life and you can give them help based on scripture as to what they should do to correct a problem or go about a situation.  

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

SOP- This is a picture I took at the University of Oklahoma football season opener against BYU. Our seats were in the upper corner of Cowboys Stadium so you can see the whole field and the massive screens in the background.