Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Going Away to College

The Universe is trying to tell me something. The same day Klaus got the acceptance to Simon's Rock, the London Guardian ran this story about the disadvantages of living at home during college:

""Young people who live at home with their parents are less likely to undertake optional work placements as part of their degree, less likely to undertake graduate level jobs on graduation, less likely to socialise with their fellow students because they remain in their pre-university social groups, and more likely to feel isolated from their peer group at university," says ERS director Sarah Parkinson."

You can read all the details here. I have to say, it makes sense to me. When I went to Northwestern and lived in the dorms, I made lots of friends, many of whom I'm still in contact with. When I transferred to Michigan and lived off-campus with my fiancee-then-husband, my social ties and university ties became much weaker.


Crimson Wife said...

I'm skeptical of the findings because it did not appear that the researchers controlled for compounding factors such as family income, student employment, and so on. Students from lower-income families are less likely to attend graduate school regardless of whether they commute or live on campus. Also, lower-income students are more likely to hold a paid job in addition to their schoolwork, reducing their free time available to do unpaid internships.

The Princess Mom said...

It's clearly not a comprehensive study, but I have to say, I agree that living at home greatly reduces your incentive to become involved with college life, based on my own college experiences.

I've lived in dorms on campus and attended as a commuter living just off campus and pretty far away from campus. Only when I lived in the dorms was I an active part of campus life, mostly because it's hard to avoid. When I attended as a commuter, living with my husband, I did some socializing with my fellow ed. majors and with my husband's fellow graduate students, but our circle of friends was not nearly as wide or electic as it had been when I lived on campus.

When I lived with my grandparents, I was not involved with social life on campus at all. I was dropped off for class in the morning, slept in the student union between classes and took the bus right home in the afternoon. I had no job. Meals were served for me. I had my own room. There was no reason to hang around campus or to get to know my fellow students.