Applying to colleges in the US – big city or small city?

Applying to colleges in the US – big city or small city?

As many college applicants, you probably already have a good idea about which U.S. college is on your favorites list. One of the steps in finding the right college for you is deciding what type of campus setting you prefer. It may be a school that friends and/or family are attending, one that is located in a big city, close to a beach or possible be all of the above.  The key is to find which setting will allow you to make the most of your college experience.

We at peerTransfer have a few things for you to keep in mind when choosing your school and location.


Attending college in major U.S. cities means you will have a different experience compared to attending college in a more rural setting:

The Rural Campus

Rural campuses are located in the country, usually near a small town in the wilderness.

  • Classic American colleges as you may have seen in movies – with football games, fraternities and sororities, and old, beautiful campuses – are more likely to be found in small towns
  • The majority of students live on campus, which can increase a college’s sense of community
  • Rural campuses can provide access to outdoor experiences and learning opportunities, as for agriculture or environmental science
  • Since small towns usually don’t offer much entertainment, many rural colleges provide free events for their students, such as comedians and bands on college tours
  • Most rural colleges provide on-campus transportation options, such as buses, for students



The Urban Campus

Urban colleges are generally designed in one of two ways. Some urban campuses are spread throughout a city while others are self-contained within a city. Here are things to consider about urban campuses:

  • Major metropolitan areas may have access to more resources such as public transportation and larger access to museums, concerts and cultural events
  • Urban colleges may also have better access to internships for their students, and offer an advantage for students seeking employment opportunities after college
  • Urban colleges tend to attract culturally diverse students



The Suburban Campus

Suburban campuses are in small cities or residential areas near cities.

  • Suburbs usually combine some of the best features of urban and rural campuses
  • Suburban campuses usually offer access to nearby cities and to outdoor activities
  • The campus is usually self-contained, which can create a strong sense of community
  • This can provide opportunities such as jobs and entertainment.
  • There may be both, public transportation and college transportation options

If you have any further questions or would like to make recommendations, please do so in the comments below!

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