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Why is Location of your University in the US important?

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Yocket Editorial Team
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Imagine this: after months of hard work and dedication, you've secured admission to a prestigious university in the USA. You've discovered an excellent program and are excited to begin your academic adventure. However, there are potential challenges ahead due to the university's location, including climate change, limited job opportunities, a lack of industry presence, limited cultural exposure, and the high cost of living.

University selection is not only about tuition costs and well-reputed programs; it also hinges on another crucial factor - location. Your university's location can profoundly impact your academic and personal journey. It shapes your daily life, mobility, your networking opportunities, and your overall experience as a student.

For example, if you attend a university in a major city, you'll have access to more job opportunities and cultural events. However, the cost of living in a major city is also higher. If you attend a university in a smaller town, the cost of living will be lower, but you may have fewer job opportunities and cultural events to choose from. Dilemma, right? But hold on, let’s get into it.

You must remember, that it is important to find a university that is a good fit for you both academically and socially. Yocket can help you find the perfect balance between a well-reputed program and an ideal location. Yocket experts understand the challenges you face when choosing a university, and we are here to help you make an informed decision.

With Yocket Premium, you can find the perfect university for your needs and budget. While also considering other factors, including location, and preferences, to help you find a university that's a good fit for you both academically and personally.

Book a FREE consultation with us to learn more about how you can choose the best location in the USA. 

Now, let’s delve into how location can impact your student experience and what are the factors you need to keep in mind while selecting your university. Let’s find out in this article.

Table of Contents

University Locations in the US: Urban, Semi-Urban & Rural Universities

The United States has over 5,000 colleges and universities. They vary in size, the kind of facilities being provided, and of course the location.  While some of these are located in a more Urban center like Los Angeles in California, others are found in small rural college towns like Hanover in New Hampshire.

Before we proceed to discuss the impact of location, let’s learn a little more about the university locations. Based on this classification we can understand the advantages and disadvantages of each one of them in your university selection.

Rural Universities 

These are located in and around the countryside. Since the campuses are far away from the main cities, they are much quieter and students have easy access to several outdoor experiences. 

Some of the best-known rural Universities include:

Semi-Urban Universities 

Suburban universities lie somewhere in the middle of urban and rural locations. They offer the best of both worlds. Typically located close to big cities, these offer access to both outdoor experiences and entertainment in nearby cities.

Popular suburban universities in the United States are:

Urban Universities

These are located in large cities. They offer students a chance to be a part of the bustling city life and easy access to entertainment. Their campuses are generally either self-contained or spread throughout the city.

Some well-known Urban Universities include:

Finding the best colleges can be hard. There are so many factors to consider, such as cost, program reputation, location, tuition fees, and more. And with so many options to choose from, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed and confused.

But don't worry, Yocket College Finder is here to help. Yocket is an online tool that can help you find the perfect college for your needs and budget. So why wait? Start your college search today with Yocket College Finder!

4 Ways a University’s Location Can Significantly Impact Student Experience

A student’s choice of University can impact the student in several ways. Given below are some of the top ways in which the location of the university is bound to affect a student in a rural, urban, or semi-urban setting. 

  • Job Opportunities
  • Exposure
  • Campus
  • Cost

Let us learn about them one by one -

Job Opportunities

The most important impact of the location of the university is on JOBS. Everybody wants a job, right? It could be for various reasons, like to earn money while studying to help pay off some of the crushing debt, to gain experience, to add value to your resume, to stay back in the country, etc.

In general, the availability of jobs tends to be plenty where there are more companies. Since cities have a high density of companies, they usually come with the promise of a large number of jobs, in almost all types of industries. 

Other than big cities, jobs are also available in plenty, near tech or commercial hubs. Since most such hubs are located away from the cities, it is not always necessary that your university should be located in a big city. For example, North Carolina State University is not located near any highly sought-after ‘large cities’ like NYC, LA, Boston, or Chicago. Despite this, it is still one of the most favored universities for Computer Science and related fields. This is because it is located in Raleigh, home to the software hub dubbed the ‘Research Triangle’. A large number of Fortune 100 companies recruit students from NCSU. 

Similarly, for subjects like Mining Engineering, having a university near an important mining location would be helpful, and such sites might not exist near a big city.

Therefore, it is important to consider job opportunities around the location of your university. 

University Type

Advantages/Disadvantages

Rural

May be harder to find internships or part-time jobs unless it’s close to a commercial/ tech hub

Semi-Urban

Available in nearby urban locations

Urban

Plenty of opportunities in all fields

Read more about how to find jobs in the US as an Indian Student.

Exposure

The next important factor is exposure. In a city-based university, the level of exposure you have will be higher as compared to a university in a comparatively rural setting. 

However, this by no means affects the ranking of the universities. Some of the best universities in the world have a rural setting. 

Also, exposure is just a matter of personal opinion and choice. Some people prefer a fast-paced city setting while others prefer a more laid-back environment.

Therefore, consider what kind of exposure you would like before choosing your university.

University Type

Advantages/ Disadvantages

Rural

Limited exposure to a close Knit-community

Semi-Urban

A chance to connect with the college community and the outside world

Urban

Higher exposure

Learn more about 12 Benefits of Studying in the USA for Indian students

Campus

Next, let us talk about the campus and the environment. The campus size is largely affected by the location of the university. Universities in city settings generally may not have enough space to have a proper ‘gated’ campus.

In urban universities, a campus might consist of scattered buildings or it could be restricted to a smaller piece of land. 

As opposed to this, for universities in a rural setting, a couple of hundred acres of land, a stadium, a football field, an Olympic-sized pool, a river of its own, and an airport here and there, will just be necessities. 

So, again, make sure you know what kind of experience you want while pursuing your degree and choose accordingly.

University Type

Advantages/ Disadvantages 

Rural

Bigger campus with more options for more outdoor activities

Semi-Urban

Bigger campus with access to city life

Urban

Smaller campuses with limited access to the outdoors 

Dig deeper into the Education System of the USA for International Students

Cost

Now, as already discussed above that location affects the kind of jobs you get. Likewise, location also affects your total MS expenditure in the US. It influences how much money you need to pay for your personal expenses, like rent, food, amenities, transport, etc. 

Universities in a rural setting will be less expensive as compared to cities. You might even get a much bigger off-campus room/house for much less rent. Food is also cheaper. Transport costs are cut down a lot since you won’t need to stay very far from campus to lower rent.  

On the contrary, the Universities located in the cities are way more expensive. Therefore, consider the location if cost is an important factor in your university selection.

University Type

Advantages/ Disadvantages

Rural

Less Expensive in terms of food & rent

Semi-Urban

Moderately expensive

Urban

The cost of living is really high

Get more information on Top 10 Cheap Universities for Masters in the USA

Before wrapping up this article, there remains one last point to be discussed because students need to know. That is the location of universities on the East Coast versus the West Coast -

East Coast vs. West Coast and Weather

The US has two major coasts - the East Coast and the West Coast. Both these coastal areas vary greatly in terms of weather conditions.

The East Coast comprises cities like NYC, Boston, Philadelphia, Hoboken, etc. They have a humid, continental-type climate with four distinct seasons - Spring, Summer, Autumn (Fall) and Winter. The temperatures in this part of the country vary highly. Summers can be warm and humid and winters can be cold and snowy.

On the West Coast, cities like Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Irvine, etc. are located. The climate here is Mediterranean. There is warm, beautiful sunshine all year round. It may rain during the winter, but overall, the climate never disappoints.

Both coasts have several Urban, Semi-Urban, and Rural Universities. Therefore, there are no major advantages/disadvantages of choosing.

Since the climate in India is tropical, a lot of students find it difficult to adjust to the climate (especially on the east coast). If you’re someone who doesn’t respond well to extreme temperatures, take into consideration a location well suited to you.

From the Desk of Yocket 

The location of your university can prove to be a crucial factor in your overall experience and career trajectory.  Being an international student in a foreign land can be exciting and overwhelming in itself. But if the environment doesn’t align with your preferences and goals, it can significantly affect your student experience. 

Therefore, it is extremely important to consider location before zeroing down on the university of your choice. Consider factors such as climate, cost of living, cultural diversity, and job opportunities are very important when your career is in question. Weigh down on each one of the factors above and select the location that suits your needs the best!

This  is where Yocket Premium steps in to help you out. With the assistance of Yocket experts, you can identify the university that perfectly aligns with your aspirations and requirements. Additionally, you will get personal guidance to prepare for the university’s application process, writing killer SOP, all the way to approving your visa application.

Sign up on Yocket Premium to get admission into your dream university!

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the location of the university matter in the USA?

How to decide the best location for a US University?

What are the benefits of attending a university in a major city?

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