Tips for Moving Away to Graduate School

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by thebassoonist, Apr 4, 2009.

  1. thebassoonist macrumors 6502a


    Sep 25, 2007
    Davis, CA

    So, I got into two graduate programs, both of which have excellent funding for me. I'm currently living at home (with my mum) as many Utahns do, and it is quite comfortable. But I'm seriously considering taking the out-of-state school's offer. I'll have enough money to get my own 1-bedroom apartment (and can't live with other people due to cross-contamination of gluten). I'm wondering if you have any tips about moving by yourself to a new town. And I'm looking for ANY advice - apartment hunting, moving tips, etc. I also have a house-trained rabbit that I'm planning to take with me and was told by someone to call it a cat (since it uses a litter box, and all). Not sure if that's a good idea or not. ...Anyway, any tips would be fantastic.
  2. dukebound85 macrumors P6


    Jul 17, 2005
    5045 feet above sea level
    you will miss your family and friends

    i just moved from colorado, my home, to this gawd awful state known as ny
  3. thebassoonist thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 25, 2007
    Davis, CA
    Oh, yeah... I lived in PA for a while (and hated it)... I would hate NY...
  4. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Oct 9, 2006
    You would make new friends but on the rabbit part.

    Call it a cat when you apply with the apartment. They tend to be ok with cats but a rabbit might races some red flags.
  5. thebassoonist thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 25, 2007
    Davis, CA
    Yeah, alrighty, that's the plan, then. :)
  6. steve2112 macrumors 68040


    Feb 20, 2009
    East of Lyra, Northwest of Pegasus
    The first step is get some info. Check out sites like and craigslist for places to live. Also check the website for the school's newspaper, if any. There will often be ads for apartments and such there. Since you are moving solo, pack light! Moving a couch by yourself isn't much fun. Once you get there, you can pick up some furniture locally, especially near the end of a semester.
  7. uspcommuter macrumors regular

    Aug 23, 2004
    Well the problem with moving out of state is...if you run into can be difficult.

    i.e. flat-tire...cant just call family or a good friend for help.

    I think when moving to another state, if possible you should stay there for a few days to get a feel if you would like it or not. Other than that, make sure u get renter's insurance.

    Make sure you have some buffer money just in case something happens.
  8. it5five macrumors 65816


    May 31, 2006
    New York
    Contact whatever university you got into in terms of apartment searching. Most of the universities I'm applying to for grad school have great off-campus assistance websites. They list reputable apartments nearby the school or apartment search websites that include the town the university is in. Craigslist is another good option, but definitely see if your university has an off-campus portion of it's housing website.

    Like someone else said, pack light. You won't have friends and family in the new town to help you unpack, so don't bring anything you can't move by yourself.
  9. thebassoonist thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 25, 2007
    Davis, CA
    Thanks so much for the tips. I'm pleasantly surprised at about how much renter's insurance is... cool. The program had a recruitment weekend and I stayed an extra two days to check out the town. So, I think I'll like it. :) Are there any things in particular to check when going apartment hunting?
  10. quagmire macrumors 603


    Apr 19, 2004
    Don't worry Daytona Beach is worse. ;) Hate it here. As soon as I am out of college, I am moving the hell out of here.
  11. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Make sure you bring photos, all your clothes and cables for your electronics. If you don't have a car, make sure your new apartment is close to a decent supermarket (within 10 minutes walk) where you can buy most of your things.

    Oh, old furniture is cooler than new Ikea furniture, particularly coffee tables and lamps. Somewhat old apartments are cooler than brand new ones. ;) Just my opinion though.
  12. heySparky macrumors regular


    Mar 8, 2007
    Maybe if you mentioned which city you are moving to, people would be able to offer more specific advice?

    The suggestion of using the school resources to help find housing is spot on. Lots of people have to move to college, so I'm sure they are used to helping in that respect.
  13. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030


    May 18, 2004
    you'll be going to school, there'll be plenty of other new grad students who don't know anybody either, you'll all make friends..... then you'll graduate and have to move to jobs in cities where you don't know anybody :D

    all will be fine, so enjoy
  14. rhsgolfer33 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 6, 2006
    I don't know if anyone has said it yet, but get renters insurance for you apartment. Its usually cheap and could end up being very worth it.

    EDIT: I see its already been brought up. Good luck with your move, I'll be in your shoes in a year.
  15. millerj123 macrumors 65816

    Mar 6, 2008
    I noticed that your reason for not living with someone else is cross contamination of gluten. You might want to see if there are other folks who also have to avoid it you could live with. Another thing to consider is that you'll need to find stores that have all the ingredients you need.

    We have three stores here that we have to make bi-weekly/monthly trips to in addition to the regular grocery store. When we travel, we have to try and get one or two extra options identified, because you never know for sure what they are going to carry.

    You'll also need to identify restaurants you can run to in a pinch, because many towns are not gluten-free friendly. Worst case, you'll need to find some menu items you can get at whatever restaurants are close.
  16. 63dot macrumors 603


    Jun 12, 2006
    Depending on what you study, grad school can take up more time than undergraduate school. Also my experience with rabbits is that if it is a house rabbit, he/she will need a certain amount of companionship time.

    Some grad programs can be incredibly time consuming so get a handle on how demanding both schools' grad programs are in relation to each other. Talk to as many students from both.

    For demanding programs, I don't mind hard, as in advanced math or interesting research, but more tedious study which requires very little thinking, but a ton of reading and writing. The latter type of program will eat up all your free time, perhaps make you depressed, and not be good for you as a pet owner.
  17. joshbing macrumors member


    Jul 24, 2008
    San Antonio, Tx
    a church CAN be a great way to meet new people since you wont know anybody. even if your not religious you could meet some nice people and make some friends.

    whatever you do, try to get plugged into a community or you could be very lonely.
  18. Little HZ macrumors regular

    Little HZ

    Nov 15, 2008
    New Mexico
    It will help you a lot if you have a place to live lined up *before* you actually move. On the other hand, I did NOT do that when I moved to Boulder for grad school a few years ago. My move was a nightmare (I had the flu, I got to town five days before my stuff, and had to sleep on the floor, with my three pets on top of me (!) for those days, 100 mph wind storm the day the movers arrived, etc. etc.). BUT, the move still was completely worth it!!!!! It gave me SO much self confidence to set out on my own and get that degree. I made lots of friends at school right away, and felt right at home. Take that into account when weighing your decision--which school seems more hospitable--a better fit with your personality. Good luck, and I hope you have as much fun as I did!
  19. stonyc macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2005
    re: missing family

    I'm going to be applying to PhD programs this coming fall and my main targets are California (UCSD, UCLA, Berkeley, Stanford) and Michigan (where I am now). I've told my parents that if I get into Berkeley or Stanford, we (my wife and I) are going to California. My sister will be done with her degree by the time I start and she's stated that if we end up out west, she's going to follow. My brother has said about the same. My dad's two sisters (who live in MI as of now) have already bought condos in LA, and another sister and a couple of my cousins have been in California for going on 20+ years now. So basically, if I get into one of Berkeley or Stanford, my parents are going to be pretty much forced to move too.

    Short version: get your family to move with you!

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