Like many of us lowly undergrads, UVM didn’t give me the financial aid I was hoping for, and I took out some student loans so my parents wouldn’t have to bear the burden of four years of a ludicrously overpriced education.
I would never admit it to them, but sometimes a part of me regrets the fact that I could have gone to another school without loading on the debt. I can’t help but daydream about how easy and carefree life would be had I gone to college in Jersey, paying in-state tuition.
But fact of the matter numero uno: UVM is the best place to be.
So I’m home for Winter Break and I’m sitting in my living room in front of the fire chatting with my Dad, when all of a sudden he says, “You know if you went to Rutgers, we would only be paying $8,000 a year and you’d have a lot more extra money to spend on whatever you want.”
Haven’t you gotten a comment like that from one of your ‘rents before? As if I didn’t already know that, Dad, you’ve only said it a million times before.
The point is that we could all be somewhere else right now. What if we were? What if my best friend, who I met here at UVM, had gone to URI? Would it really matter?
It’s funny to think that had I gone somewhere else I would still have met a best friend. I would have had fun on the weekends, and I would have taken interesting courses.
So then is there really a difference between here and there, wherever “there” may be?
It seems that wherever someone chooses to go to college, they make the most of their time spent there. They have as much fun as possible (maybe what the parentals would call “too much fun”) and manage to get by with decent-to-mediocre grades (or nearly perfect grades, if they’re a nerd like me).
But I don’t think that means that your life would be the same, or that you would be just as happy (or happier, for that matter) if you were someplace else. That’s simply part of human nature – to try to enjoy oneself no matter what the circumstances.
Where you are, where you chose to be, does matter. The truth (albeit cheesy as hell) is that there is a place for everyone, something that is often described as a “perfect fit”.
We each have a place where we belong at a certain point of life, a place that belongs to us. This place, for many of us, is Burlington.
While it is interesting to think about what life would be like somewhere else, with different friends, a different environment, and maybe even a few more Benjamins in the wallet, I wouldn’t leave B-Town if you paid me (well actually, how much are we talking about ’cause I still have to buy some of my textbooks?).
But seriously, I don’t want to be anywhere but here.