How to convince my parents to let me go to an out-of-state college.?

By | August 7, 2015

I’m a freshman in high school right now and I’ve never really known what to do with my life. I’ve switched “What I want to be when I grow up” hundreds of times and my parents are always getting on me for never having any idea what I want to do.

I realized, after working on a play last year at my local middle school, that I have always been in love with theater, movies and the entertainment industry. Suddenly, everything clicked.

I didn’t mention this to my parents. For some reason my dad printed off this sheet with a massive list of jobs on it and told me to circle what I was interested in. There weren’t many options for entertainment, so I just circled Movie Director and Author and put a question mark by Lawyer because I felt like I needed to mark something else. My parents were so happy about Lawyer that they completely ignored the other two. I gently reminded them and they shrugged it off.

It was shot down pretty fast.

I live in small-town Indiana. No opportunities for entertainment. I mentioned to my parents in a car ride that I definitely wanted to go out-of-state for college and they refused to talk to me for an hour and a half because I was “being rude and disrespecting our state.” I said it very politely, I promise, and it definitely didn’t warrant that kind of reaction. Both of my parents went to in-state colleges and have never lived anywhere but Indiana. While living here I’ve seen so many people get stuck in ruts and never get out of the state. I’m genuinely terrified that it will happen to me.

A few months ago, I hears about this girl from my school that ended up going to NYU for college. A few weeks ago, I researched it and fell in love with the Tisch School of the Arts TV and Film program in NYU.It’s everything I want in a college and I’ve always had a fascination with NYC, even though I’ve never been.

Tisch is my dream school. I have good grades (4.05 GPA) and do a lot of extracurriculars.

I just need to tell my parents without a fight
Thanks for the replies!

I would like to add one detail:

In Computer Apps, we were researching future careers and my teacher said that I need to get out if I want ANY job opportunities. There are zero to no opportunities for big entertainment work in a town of about 16,000 people in rural Indiana.

Thank you, to the person who left the huge comment. I need someone to speak to me rationally, and without bias.

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3 thoughts on “How to convince my parents to let me go to an out-of-state college.?

  1. Tex

    You are just a freshman now, do not get in any hurry to make any permanent decisions, because you will find that they are not all that permanent. It is good to set goals, it is not so good to become obsessed with them, Relax enjoy the next four years of high school and the decisions about where to go to college and how to do it will come.

  2. RoaringMice

    To become a lawyer, you can major in anything you’d like for your bachelors degree. So you are more than welcome to major in theater, film, screenwriting, creative writing, business – in other words, in things that can get you into the entertainment industry. In fact, perhaps you’re even focused on entertainment law, or intellectual property law (one of the few fields in law with demand), so majoring in something related to entertainment would make sense.

    In other words, you can still please your parents by entertaining the law school option, while majoring in the stuff you really want to major in. The difference is that now you have a story they might go for.

    In addition, there are some very good colleges in your home state, many of which offer the majors you’re interested in. So you could at least apply to some of those colleges, and seriously consider them, to please your parents.

    This approach could bring you peace with your family.

    As for NYU being your dream school – I strongly suggest you do not get too tied to any one school at this point. You may not even get into NYU. If you do, then unless your family is wealthy, it is unlikely you’ll be able to go there without taking on massive, massive student loans (NYU does not tend to offer good non-loan aid.) This would leave you – and I am not kidding – hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt when you graduate, which would mean you could neither afford to stay in NYC when you graduate, nor could you even afford to pursue your career.

    I’ve seen this happen to too many people.

    You don’t need to go to school in NYC in order to pursue a career in film/tv/theater there when you graduate. In fact, financially, it can be a better idea to go to a less expensive uni, perhaps a good public uni in your home state, major in what you’d like, and then, less saddled by debt, be able to afford to move to NYC when you graduate.

    In the end, I’m not telling you not to apply to NYU. I’m just giving you some other options which might work both for you personally, and in terms of your relationship with your parents.

  3. Dorothy K.

    If you do your research, on schools in your state as well as schools out-of-state, like NYU and come up with reasons, other than just your locale for the Entertainment Industry, as to why an out-of-state school is the better option, your parents might be a bit more receptive to your requests/suggestions.

    You’ll also need to take Cost of Tuition into consideration for each school. If it is your wish to have your parents pay for some or all of your College Costs, you’ll need to make sure they can afford a school that is outside of your state. If they cannot, then you’ll need to see if they will give their permission for you to work at least part-time to split the costs, if you decide that out-of-state is the best option for college. Even with splitting costs, you need to be realistic as to whether or not you can afford it. A general Rule of Thumb is to not owe more in loans that you could expect to gross as income for one year. So, if you expected Annual Salary is 40,000 the first year after graduation, you wouldn’t want loans to be more than that, and truth be told, going out of state, you can expect to owe about 60,000 dollars back, because you’ll pay double for Tuition and Room and Board.

    Really look into everything. Is it possible to earn a degree in the state of Indiana and be hired to do an Internship in New York or Los Angeles upon completion of the degree? Would you need to live in New York or California and still be in school in order to get that Internship? Can you gain employment without prior experience? Will your parents at least let you visit another college, out-of-state? Visiting is a good idea, because anything can sound and look great online, but going there in person really gives you a feel for the atmosphere, and let’s you know how you’d fit in. All of that will matter as well!

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