Why I chose to go to an all-girls college

Just because I will not have male peers does not mean I will have a sad college experience


Shelby Hudson, JAG editor-in-chief

In eighth grade, my grandmother suggested for me to start looking into colleges, and that an all-girls college in Missouri was amazing. No offense if you’re reading this Nana, but an all-girls college? In Missouri? Fourteen-year-old me said, “Next joke.”

But, lo and behold, December of my sophomore year I found an ad about Cottey College for Women in Nevada, Missouri, in the pamphlet at the Kansas City Ballet’s performance of the Nutcracker, and I was intrigued.

Rapid fire information to your questions: Yes, Cottey caps their attendance at 350 students, and, yes, my graduating class in high school is 314. Yes, Nevada, Missouri, has no Target, but they have two Casey’s gas stations. And, yes, I am going to hang a small picture of Ruth Bader Ginsburg up on my wall.

Yet the two Casey’s in a 10-mile radius aren’t the reasons I am so attracted to a school and a town that could not be more polar opposite that what I was raised with. And it being all-girls isn’t the reason I chose to attend it, it is just a plus. Yet, the raised-eyebrow response I get to saying I am attending an all-girls school in Missouri has prompted this opinion piece.

I already knew the big universities in Kansas were not a good fit for me; lecture halls of 500 aren’t how I wanted to look back on my education. So, discovering Cottey — because I ignored my grandmother’s attempts to tell me about it before — was a dream come true.

Cottey stands for sisterhood and a thorough education. In my sophomore year, Cottey will be paying for me to travel abroad to Europe for a week, and it also offers opportunities to go to Thailand and Guatemala to volunteer.

For someone whose passion is human rights, the ability to have unique experiences paid for, and even the opportunity to study abroad my junior year, which I will also have a small helping-hand paying for from the school, is so wonderful for my international relations major.

I’ve been asked about what I will do about boys and dating, which is my favorite question to be asked, because people think I am paying thousands of dollars to be concerned about the dating scene in Nevada, Missouri.

But, the answer to your burning question which you clicked on this link for: Yes, it kind of stinks that there are no cute boys like there are here in Shawnee, but my passion is human rights work, and I am so excited for my higher education to allow me to directly help people who have never had the same opportunities as me. And, honestly, the women I want to help in the future probably wouldn’t worry about the availability of men in a town with only country music radio stations, anyway. (No offense, Nevada)

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