The Student News Site of Burlingame High School

The Burlingame B

The Student News Site of Burlingame High School

The Burlingame B

The Student News Site of Burlingame High School

The Burlingame B

Are out-of-state schools worth the hype?

Popular+out-of-state+schools+attract+students+nationwide%2C+leading+to+an+influx+of+applicants.
Graphic by Sophia Bella
Popular out-of-state schools attract students nationwide, leading to an influx of applicants.

Every year, as college application season rolls around, a remarkable number of students nationwide and here at Burlingame apply to out-of-state universities, often public schools, known for their roaring football crowds and great student morale. However, the overwhelming number of applications to each school annually poses an interesting question: What makes these schools so appealing to students?

It’s not just Burlingame students who are guilty of leaving California to attend out-of-state schools, with around 40,000 Californians leaving that state for college in 2020 (Poets & Quants). Living in California has numerous advantages, including the presence of great colleges such as University of California (UC) and California State University (CSU) schools — and many of those do not lack sports prowess and school spirit. However, it’s clear that in-state residents are overlooking these benefits in favor of the “out-of-state experience,” and while moving to different cities can offer a wider range of cultural experiences for students, it’s important to consider the advantages of staying in-state for college such as lower tuition, more scholarship opportunities and greater familiarity with your surroundings.

So what is the coveted “out-of-state experience” that makes students think they must travel outside their home state? 

For one, these schools boast intense spirit and vibrance. If you attend any of them, the passion and school pride are unmistakable — and this is largely due to the strength of their athletic, especially football, programs. For example, “Big Ten” and “Pac 12” are two of the most competitive conferences and host teams like Ohio State University and the University of Arizona, respectively. These conferences make up some of the oldest Division 1 collegiate athletic conferences in the nation, and attending schools within these conferences has become a goal of many students.

They are also admired academically and known as some of the top public universities in the country. Being such big schools, they also offer a wide range of majors and programs so students can explore their unique interests while enrolled. This blend of strong academics and sports makes these schools all the more appealing to students thus increasing the number of annual applications and lowering admission rates.

Although these factors are amazing and add to the school’s overall value, it is impossible to discuss these schools and not bring up the high cost of attending. For example, the University of Michigan’s annual tuition for out-of-state students totals $58,078 per year, not including additional living expenses and necessary course materials. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), in 2019-2020, the average undergraduate fee for in-state students in California was $8,192 at a public four-year school. Even though this may not be an issue for some, for many, cost is a looming factor when choosing where to apply, and in-state schools can offer a much more affordable price compared to out-of-state schools, with equally rigorous academics. 

This isn’t to say that out-of-state schools are inferior to in-state. There are many fantastic schools nationwide that provide great opportunities for students. However, when considering factors like price and location, California schools offer excellent benefits and shouldn’t be overlooked by students when deciding where to apply.

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About the Contributor
Sophia Doss, Senior Reporter
Sophia Doss is a junior and a second-year journalism student at Burlingame High School. She is so excited to continue her passion for reporting and writing in journalism. When she's not at her internship or playing soccer/ lacrosse Sophia enjoys reading, playing with her dog Duke, and spending time with family and friends.
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