When it comes to choosing a college, there are many factors to take into account. Beyond the school itself, one of the major things to consider is the area surrounding it. You want to know what is at your disposal, in regards to both business connections and entertainment. You may love the campus, but there will be times when you want to get off campus and explore. Here are seven reasons why you should consider going to a school in the D.C. metro area.
1. Accessibility of Washington, D.C.
There are great transportation options in and around the city — the Metro and bus systems can get you nearly anywhere. Whether you’re spending an afternoon at one of the Smithsonian museums or heading to Georgetown for some cupcakes, public transportation is there for you. Routes extend beyond the city limits, and many nearby colleges, apartment buildings and hotels offer shuttle buses to the nearest stop. Also, many surrounding counties have their own bus systems, which will make traveling to and from your campus manageable, reliable and affordable.
D.C. is a career-oriented city. For you, this means there are internships, jobs and volunteer opportunities in almost any field you can think of. D.C. is also home to the federal government — so whether you’re interested in interning on Capitol Hill or working for the Environmental Protection Agency, you’re in the right place.
3. Historically and culturally rich Washington, D.C.
While there are countless ways to pursue a future for yourself in D.C., it’s also a great place to remember and appreciate the past. You can visit the very place where Dr. Martin Luther King gave his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech, or where 20 million people congregated for the first-ever Earth Day. The ability to explore monuments, museums, the Library of Congress and the White House — just to name a few — is at your fingertips.
If you don’t know it now, you will know it soon — networking is key to success. Introducing yourself to professionals in your field will be extremely helpful down the road when you’re searching for summer internships or your first job after graduation. There are few places more equipped to support your networking endeavors than Washington, D.C. Whether you want to meet business pioneers, learn from nonprofit leaders or study under microbiologists, you can find some of the most intelligent and noteworthy leaders in this city.
5. Adjunct professors
Sometimes, networking may even come to you! Many universities in the area have field experts teach one or two classes a semester. These professionals are often actively working in the field of study that they are teaching in, and can be a valuable resource when it comes to meeting people in your line of study. These professors often have a great grasp on the current applications of their class, and can help steer you in the direction that will be most beneficial for your future in the field.
6. Vibrant social scene
Beyond the practical applications of living near Washington, D.C., it’s also a great place to hang out with friends and find free things to do. Throughout the year, there are numerous events that take place right in the city — from movies on the National Mall, to yoga, to concerts. There are also great places to eat and venues to explore.
7. Diversity of Washington, D.C.
With so many different cultures, backgrounds and belief systems concentrated in this area, you will be introduced to varying ways of thought and grow in knowledge of the world. You’ll also have dozens of ethnic restaurants to try!
No matter where you choose to go to school, you will find advantages and opportunities. Being aware of these opportunities, however, can help you make the right choice — and make the most of your college career.