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Handcuffed to Pennsylvania ...
Old 05-11-2016, 06:54 AM   #1
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Handcuffed to Pennsylvania ...

The son's SAT scores are in and as expected really good in math and no so much in reading. His perpetual deans list college senior sister had the same problem. Decent grades, just not great standardized test takers - so what does it mean? Less choices. Sarasota where I had a notion to retire next summer doesn't have many colleges in reasonable driving range (to me 6 1/2 hours or less). University of Florida, too big and I doubt he'd get in.

I'm told he wants no bigger then a medium size school - he visited West Chester University a short drive away (I like the place). He told his mother ( I had to work) there's so many people.
Odd because his high school is like a small college.

Pennsylvania has oodles of choices - in addition to West chester there is satellite schools of Pitt, Penn State and many more. Guess what they are very reasonable (less than $25K a year all in)
University

University of NC at Charlotte?, keep the rental Condo and make it my northern PA home Base?

What to do? I've dreamed of getting away from the cold and starting a new adventure. I won't live forever -I'm 61. I Have an obligation and can't and won't be selfish.




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Old 05-11-2016, 07:03 AM   #2
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Your problem is what they build dormitories for. I left the nest at 17, drove 4 hours south to the big city (first time on a 5 lane interstate highway) and figured it out... and we didn't have cell phones, Skype, etc back then. He'll figure it out and gain self-confidence as he does.

While it would be ideal to be a short drive away Sarasota is a short flight.

If you really need to be closer, many of my friends winter at Myrtle Beach... more sweater weather than summer weather but better than snow and cold.
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Old 05-11-2016, 07:03 AM   #3
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A different look at colleges from many different viewpoints. Price, entrance, location, requirements, results, and mainly devoted to student satisfaction.

https://colleges.niche.com/

My personal feeling is that fitting the student to the college is the most important factor in determining future success. Too often ignored in making the final choice. Has to do with "little fish in a big pool, and big fish in a little pool", and the happiness involved in absorbing what is being offered.
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Old 05-11-2016, 07:09 AM   #4
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What does he want to do as a career?

College in FL + strong math skills + wants a small school = have you looked at Embry Riddle?

Not cheap, but scholarships and grants are available.
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Old 05-11-2016, 07:12 AM   #5
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I'm told he wants no bigger then a medium size school - he visited West Chester University a short drive away (I like the place). He told his mother ( I had to work) there's so many people.
Odd because his high school is like a small college.
Pennsylvania has oodles of choices - in addition to West chester there is satellite schools of Pitt, Penn State and many more. Guess what they are very reasonable (less than $25K a year all in)
Used to live in Downingtown, right down the rode from West Chester, and it is a pretty good area...except for winter! My parents still live there. I took some course at WCU many a moon ago, thought it was a nice smaller sized school.
Pitt and Penn are also good schools.
I wouldn't limit where you live for where kid goes to school. You live your life and let them start to live theirs, to me that is what part of college is all about IMHO.
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Old 05-11-2016, 08:13 AM   #6
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I'll echo Lucantes' reply. Your son's college choice should be based on what is good for him (taking into account budgeting and who's paying). Where you live -i.e., as far as his college choice - is somewhat secondary.
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Old 05-11-2016, 08:16 AM   #7
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OP, it's not clear from your post whether you feel stuck in PA so you can be close to where your son will go to school, or so that you can qualify for in-state tuition.

If it's need to be in close proximity, then just let things play out a little and look at all of your options. IME, kids don't come home much once they get busy on campus so you might be looking at only 2-3 trips a year.

If your concern is in-state tuition, then do your homework. The rules are different for every state, but in almost every case the student's eligibility for in-state tuition depends on the residency of the parents. Then there's rules around if parents move and the timing. Make sure you check the residency rules if you decide to move.
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Old 05-11-2016, 08:49 AM   #8
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Do you live in PA? I know you work across the border in Wilmington.

My sibling in laws live in PA and my husband is there. PA has a variety of medium and small schools in addition to the giant schools like PSU. Temple has some good programs as well, a nephew is doing pre-med there (commuting via Septa trains from his parents northern suburb home.)

Will your son live on campus or at home?
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Old 05-11-2016, 09:01 AM   #9
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I'm going through the college search for my younger son now also.....and primarily looking at the PA schools. For him, he's strong in math, less so in other areas but is looking at actuarial sciences right now. And once he's in college, I'm trying to convince my wife that we should spend Jan-March in the south somewhere to escape the worst of the winter. Hey, Philadelphia has mild winters, doesn't it (We live in snowbelt area near Great Lakes). The boys were born in Alabama so that's my choice.


Lots of reasonable choices in PA, there is the PA State System of Higher Ed schools (West Chester is part of that system) but I don't think they offer engineering. And there are the various campuses of Penn State, several of which offer four year degrees. My older son is going to Penn State Behrend next year, offers 80% of degrees available at Penn State University Park in a small college setting.
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Old 05-11-2016, 09:18 AM   #10
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I may be a little bit "old school", but I think that if you want to move to Florida when you retire, you should move to Florida when you retire and changing your plans should not be under consideration.

I am assuming that there are at least some accredited colleges or universities that meet your budget requirements even if you move to Florida. So, move to Florida, choose one of those schools, and send your kid there. Let him know about the change in plans ASAP.

If my assumption is incorrect, then you have quite a dilemma on your hands.


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Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
I'm told he wants no bigger then a medium size school - he visited West Chester University a short drive away (I like the place). He told his mother ( I had to work) there's so many people.
Odd because his high school is like a small college.
Don't forget that at his age, hormones rule. An odd statement like that could be motivated by something as simple as knowing that a pretty girl that he likes has selected a small college nearby. He might be steering you in her direction.
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Old 05-11-2016, 09:19 AM   #11
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If your concern is in-state tuition, then do your homework. The rules are different for every state, but in almost every case the student's eligibility for in-state tuition depends on the residency of the parents. Then there's rules around if parents move and the timing. Make sure you check the residency rules if you decide to move.
+1. In state residency usually does mean where the parents reside but it doesn't mean you have to live in Pennsylvania 365 days a year.
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Old 05-11-2016, 09:23 AM   #12
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Central Florida has plenty of university opportunities.


University of South Florida in Tampa, University of Central Florida in Orlando, Florida Southern University, Southeastern University and Florida Polytech are all in Lakeland. There are several Keiser University campuses. Sarasota is 4 hours from Miami....lots of colleges there.

Not sure why there wouldn't be an acceptable option in Florida.
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Old 05-11-2016, 09:25 AM   #13
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+1. In state residency usually does mean where the parents reside but it doesn't mean you have to live in Pennsylvania 365 days a year.
Ding, ding, ding....

Raythesnowbird, problem solved.


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Old 05-11-2016, 09:58 AM   #14
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University of Houston - cheap and we have a really good football team
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Handcuffed to Pennsylvania ...
Old 05-11-2016, 11:20 AM   #15
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Handcuffed to Pennsylvania ...

Additional details
1. In state/out of state: I can afford out of state but if you could do it for $100K who wants to pay $200K -- ps the son son & daughter will likely get what we don't spend now.
2. Major: Likely math\computer science like his sister

I understand if the boy is too succeed then it has to be his decision. Maybe snowbirds get it during the worst of thew bad weather..


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Old 05-11-2016, 11:46 AM   #16
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Send him to a local community college for two years. It will be cheaper and he can decide if he wants to continue.

Community colleges are more like 13th and 14th grade, and a nice transition.
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Old 05-11-2016, 11:49 AM   #17
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Snow birding to FL could be a good situation for you:

DS goes to college in PA, your permanent address is PA, so in-state tuition. You stay in PA until after Thanksgiving. The weather isn't that bad here (I live in Bucks County), DS gets to have Thanksgiving with you at home. Then you head to FL. At Christmas break, DS flies to your place in FL and spends a month in the sun. Much better than January in SE PA.

Then in April, you head back to the homestead. DS finishes the semester in mid May and spends the summer at home. Rinse and repeat.
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Old 05-11-2016, 11:55 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
The son's SAT scores are in and as expected really good in math and no so much in reading. His perpetual deans list college senior sister had the same problem. Decent grades, just not great standardized test takers - so what does it mean? Less choices. Sarasota where I had a notion to retire next summer doesn't have many colleges in reasonable driving range (to me 6 1/2 hours or less). University of Florida, too big and I doubt he'd get in.

I'm told he wants no bigger then a medium size school - he visited West Chester University a short drive away (I like the place). He told his mother ( I had to work) there's so many people.
Odd because his high school is like a small college.

Pennsylvania has oodles of choices - in addition to West chester there is satellite schools of Pitt, Penn State and many more. Guess what they are very reasonable (less than $25K a year all in)
University

University of NC at Charlotte?, keep the rental Condo and make it my northern PA home Base?

What to do? I've dreamed of getting away from the cold and starting a new adventure. I won't live forever -I'm 61. I Have an obligation and can't and won't be selfish.




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Kettering University will require your son to get a job his freshman year, which might help ease your transition if you know your son already has a job .

It's in Flint MI and I resemble the good at math, not so good at English. When I attended Kettering it didn't even have an english department Just turns out good to great engineers...

Freshman class size is about 300 (plus or minus) and was about 550 when I attended.
Because of the work requirement, most students spend 6 months at school, then 6 months wherever they work (could be Florida for example). I have friends which co-oped in Germany, NY, MI, OH, CO, CA, TN and the list goes on.
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Old 05-11-2016, 11:59 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
Additional details
1. In state/out of state: I can afford out of state but if you could do it for $100K who wants to pay $200K -- ps the son son & daughter will likely get what we don't spend now.
2. Major: Likely math\computer science like his sister

I understand if the boy is too succeed then it has to be his decision. Maybe snowbirds get it during the worst of thew bad weather..


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As others have mentioned, if you plan to snowbird (keep your home in PA and a winter home in Sarasota) then your son would still qualify for in-state tuition so the answer to 1 will depend on what your plan is.

If your plan is different then I suspect that there are ways that he could establish residency in PA and then be eligible for in-state tuition even if you live elsewhere. The FAQ below suggests that if you move but he does not and establishes residency in PA then he could qualify for in-state tuition. YMMV.

Quote:
If the parents of a resident student move to another state, will that student be reclassified as a non-resident for tuition purposes?
Possibly. A student who changes his/her place of residence from Pennsylvania to another state is required to give prompt written notice of this change to the University and shall be considered for reclassification effective with the date of such change. The written notice should be provided to the Residency Appeal Officer, 103 Shields Building, University Park, PA 16802.

If a student has maintained continuous residence in the Commonwealth for other than educational purposes for a period of at least 12 months immediately prior to his/her initial enrollment at The Pennsylvania State University and, the student continues to maintain such separate residence, the residency of the parents generally does not come into play.
My parents moved out of state while I was a senior in high school - can I still be considered a resident for tuition purposes?
If the student remains in the Commonwealth and graduates from a Pennsylvania high school, it may be possible to be considered a resident for tuition purposes, depending on the circumstances of the case.

However, if the student relocates with the parents out of the state, and does not have 12 months of residency for non-educational reasons prior to enrollment at Penn State, the student would most likely be classified as a non-resident. There is no "banking" of prior time in the Commonwealth - the residency requirements relate to the 12 months preceding enrollment at the University.
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Old 05-11-2016, 01:22 PM   #20
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There are solutions to this issue...in your shoes if you feel you will stay in the Florida area I would encourage your boy to move with you. what is your plan to get him in state tuition rates in FL was he going to take a gap year and work until you got in state status.

Once your boy is in PA doing his thing and turning into an adult the chances he will live in Florida go down. This means more separation from future grandkids and stuff like that.

The grandkid thing is something you really don't think about until they are actually here. It would be a big loss to me to not have regular prolonged contact with our grandkids, and to just the the grandparent that they visit once in awhile. At 61 you will be older first time grandparents when the time comes and might not even feel like doing lots of traveling.My DH often says "I'll be 80 when our oldest grandkid get out of high school, I want to spend time with them now,"
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