Sticking Around

By Allison Sass

A year before I graduated college, I had my heart set on breaking free from my small college town and running to the lights of the city. Any city. As long as it was huge and well-known. I was thinking Boston, NYC, Austin.. anywhere where I could "start fresh" and land that awesome design/writing gig that I and millions of other recent grads knew we would be perfect for.

Around February reality set in, as I realized that in order to actually secure a job in one of these cities, I would basically have to move there blindly, find an apartment, and then look for work. I certainly didn't have the money to afford rent for even the smallest of apartments in these cities and began to think that it was time to consider more realistic options.

SUNY Geneseo is located about a half hour from Rochester, NY, a city known for the Eastman family (founders of Kodak), and for having lots of contact lens company headquarters. Not exactly the glam life I was intending on living post grad. So, I did a little research on the city. Since Rochester is close to Geneseo, it was easy to spend a day finding new and exciting things in the city. I even got the chance to walk around my current neighborhood before moving into my apartment.

Now that I'm in my affordable Rochester apartment, I love it here. I love that there are tree lined streets everywhere, people are outside walking rain or shine, and that my apartment has at least 20 shops, restaurants, and vibrant nightlife within walking distance. Rochester has more festivals and free concerts than I would ever expect a city to hold, and although it might not be well known, it's the perfect fit for me right now.

I'm thankful that I was able to explore this area while in college, and encourage other recent grads to do the same. Don't count out what's right under your nose!

It may not be the "glamorous" lifestyle you imagine, but you may find a city or town that offers everything you need, why not wait a few years to rent that Manhattan apartment so you can afford to enjoy living in it?


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