“It must suck knowing you’re just going into the 13th grade” some have said. No, as a matter of fact, I AM going into my first year of college and just because it isn’t the “big campus” does not mean I am spending another year in “High School”. Stereotyping a small Penn State campus as not good enough is irritating. I chose a branch campus for many reasons, and I thought I would express my opinions in case anyone else was struggling with the decision on whether or not they want to attend a satellite campus. Keep reading to discover eleven reasons why I chose PSUA.
1. I won’t be just one number of 50,000 students.
At the Altoona campus there are about 9,000 students on campus and commuting. That’s a big difference, and for me, I would much rather get to breathe while I figure out this whole college thing instead of suffocating real fast in that sea of people. My campus is easier to remember and maneuver through, my professors are willing to meet their students and there’s so much opportunity to get to know as many people as possible.
2. I get to adjust to the college life in a smaller setting.
So since I won’t be thrown into a sea of 50,000+ students, I will get to adjust on my own terms. Smaller campus, more intimate and one on one classes. I will get the chance to know my professors and by the time I make it up to University Park, I will be specialized in my major and I get to skip the lecture halls with 700 students in each class.
3. I will get the same education as I would if I were at university park.
Penn State is a known university WORLD WIDE, which means they have the resources to keep every single one of their campuses staffed with the best and most highly appreciated professors. It’s their job to make you smart because later it reflects on them how much you shine in the real world with that Pennsylvania State University diploma.
4. Penn state is my dream college and just because I didn’t make it straight into main doesn’t mean I can’t be a Penn Stater!
Everyone thinks that you can only be a “true” Penn State student if you go to UP. I don’t know who started that trend, but I intend to end it. Just because you aren’t 50 feet from the football stadium or one classroom away from the creamery, does not mean you can’t deem yourself unworthy of the Penn Stater title. If you bleed blue and white just like I have all my life, no matter what campus you attend, you’ll be a Lion and you’ll be fine. I promise.
5. I can still stay on a campus and have the college experience.
I get to stay on the Altoona campus and get the full experience just like anyone else. We may not have the Penn State Creamery or The Hub but we have our own simple pleasures. We have a huge pond in the middle of campus that you can take advantage of and when I say that I mean, students kayak and do water sports in it. Even ice skate on it in the winter. We have local ice cream shops including Brain Freezers, Meadows and Cold Stone Creamery. I get to live my college experience and although it’s in a smaller setting, sometimes smaller can be better.
6. I will only be 40 minutes away from state college and who doesn’t like a road trip every now and then?
If you don’t like long car rides with your best friends jamming to the 2000’s best hits like “What’s my name” and “Suga Suga” then idk, everyone is entitled to their opinion but i’m sorry yours is wrong.
7. I still get season tickets to the games.
YES you will see me at EVERY home game and YES I will try every time to get my 5 seconds of fame crowd surfing. Because who doesn’t want to have a cliche twitter header of them crowd surfing at a white out in their cutest Penn State clothes and paw print tattoos. I still get every bit of an option as a freshman to score PSU Football season tickets and I even know someone at UP that didn’t get them… and I did…sorry…but not really…
8. I still get to chant WE ARE!
People may think that the notorious “WE ARE, PENN STATE” chant only takes place at UP during college tours, random moments, or pep rallies. To be completely honest, it happens everywhere. I don’t have to be in State College to know I am a Penn Stater because I know that no matter what campus I am at, I can always chant “WE ARE” and get the response “PENN STATE” that puts a smile on anyone’s face.
9. I’m saving a lot of money.
Average tuition cost for Penn State University Park are as follows (roughly) $29,000-$32,000 (in state) and $43,000-$46,000 (out of state). The average cost for PSUA ranges from $26,000-$29,000 (in state) to $33,000-$37,000 (out of state). To me that is a big difference when it comes to college expenses, normally college students want to save the most they can, but when it comes to Penn State, everyone wants to start at the BIG University.
10. I still get to be a big part of one of the best things about Penn State- THON.
Every Penn Stater loves THON. Who doesn’t love the fact that they can be a part of the largest student run philanthropy in the WORLD. The thing I love most about Penn State is the fact that I just mentioned. Although I won’t be a huge part of it in State College, If I can have the same impact on raising money for an amazing charity event at a smaller university, I will be just fine. And so will you.
11. No matter what I will still get a diploma that says “The Pennsylvania State University”.
It won’t say “two years at the branch and two years at main”- I will always be recognized as a full Penn State Alumni and it will not matter that I didn’t spend all four years at University Park. I get two different experiences to last me a lifetime. Truly, the best of both worlds.