school far away from home

Why I Chose a School Far Away from Home

By Megann Licskai 

I grew up in London, Ontario, home of the Western Mustangs [insert rowdy cheer here]. However, I’m at the University of King’s College in Halifax, a school 2000km away. Those of you who grew up in a university town will understand why this is confusing for some people. I think when you’re surrounded by student life, there’s a sense of complacency. People expect you to go to your home school, especially when it’s a wonderful school like Western.

But I knew right away that Western wasn’t the right match for me. I didn’t even apply to a school that was less than an 8-hour drive away. And there are a few reasons why that was absolutely a good decision:

1) I’m shy.

It is wrong to think that shyness is a good reason to stay home. I’m perfectly content to spend all weekend with a pile of books and Hitchcock movies. If I was home I would probably never go out. By moving across the country, I put myself in a situation where I needed to go socialize. And I’ve made some really amazing friends because of it.

2) Western is a VERY BIG SCHOOL.

Big schools are right for some people, but I love the close-knit King’s community. I am on a first-name basis with almost everybody in my year.

3) The city is… kind of boring.

London is a great city to grow up, study, work or raise a family in. It’s also a city that I know well. I was itching to see other parts of the country and live somewhere with a bigger art scene.

One of my profs told me that I “escaped the Western trap.” I don’t take this to be a negative judgment on Western, but a positive judgment on me. I could have done the easy thing and stayed at home. Instead, I took a risk. And every day I am glad that I did.