BY LAUREN APETZ, MEDIA EDITOR
A majority of the McKendree University student body is from around the area and can go home whenever they like. But for a lot of students, going home takes more than just a short car ride. For the likeness of this article, Missouri and Illinois are considered “in-state”.
There is a high population of athletes on campus, and a majority of these athletes are brought in from out of state, even out of the country. There are certain teams that are known as teams who recruit out of state and even more–out of the country. If someone on campus is from out of the country, then they are most likely either a tennis player or a soccer player.
I myself am an out-of-state student from Florida, so I was curious how my fellow students who are out-of-state share some of the same problems I do. I don’t have a car, and I don’t get to go home all that often, only for the major breaks like Christmas and summer. Not having a car here is a huge struggle. I am not the only one who feels this way.
“It’s kind of impossible to live here if you don’t have car cause the distances between places are so long and always have to ask friends for doing something out school or just go buy groceries.” ~ Aleix Alvarez
Aleix is a tennis player who is here from Barcelona, Spain. A lot of his friends are also from out of the country so the chances of them having a car are pretty slim as well. Aleix will walk from West to campus a lot because Bogey doesn’t run on schedule most of the time. People definitely take having a car for granted. Scott Armistead, a goalie from New Zealand, says that not having a car really isn’t an issue because all of his roommates have cars so they either take him places or they allow him to borrow their car. Shawn Bibee, a bowler from Detroit states, “It’s not always the easiest thing trying to find ways into town to get groceries, to practice since we have to commute a bit, or my leagues that travel in other cities. I guess you could say it’s limiting as to what I can actually do.” There are a lot of out of state students who do have cars and drove them for hours to get them here so that they don’t feel stranded. Yes, you can walk places, but when it is really cold and snowy, do you really want to be walking to class?
No one that I interviewed had any regrets about going away from home to go to
school, they just miss certain things that come with living close to home. Little things like peoples’ birthdays or miss chances to see younger relatives grow up. Another thing to miss about home is that when you are sick, mom can’t just hop in a car and come take care of you. Being away from home forces the individual to mature and grow up a little faster than the ones who either live at home or who has the opportunity to go home all the time.
“Regrets for going away from home? I don’t get to see my loved ones but it’s made me a completely independent person when it comes to decision making and having to back myself. I’ve grown apart from a lot of my friends back home that went to local/in-state schools but that’s–I guess–that’s a price you pay when you want to provide a better chance for your future.”- Shawn Bibee.
“Although I really miss my family at times, it has allowed me to mature, learn, meet new people, and expand my connections.”- Riley Smith bowler from Kenosha, Wisconsin.
“I don’t have any regrets leaving home to come to school here. I really like McKendree and the way it’s set up. Learning is easy, sports are fun, the people are incredible, and it is honestly everything I wanted to find in my search for a school!”- Jeremy Baldyga soccer player from Denver, Colorado.
Life for the out-of-state student can be a little bit more difficult but coming to McKendree University has been well worth the hours of travel and the hundreds of “You’re from _____, why the hell are you in Illinois?”