Call for Stories: Tell Us About Your Transition from Homeschool to College!

By R.L. Stollar, HA Community Coordinator

For HA’s next open series, we want to hear from those of you who attended college (whether for one year, four years, or even into a Masters or PhD program!). We want to hear about your experience transitioning from homeschool to college. Was it easy? Difficult? A mixed bag? No matter where on the spectrum from “no problem” to “so many problems,” we would love to feature your personal story.

Topics you could potentially write about include:

  • Experiences with socialization: When you stepped foot onto your college campus, did you realize you were (as many parents argue) well-socialized already? Or did you realize that you were not (and that those many parents misunderstood the meaning of socialization)? What sorts of difficulties (if you did experience difficulties) regarding social interactions and interpersonal communication did you have to deal with?
  • Experiences with diversity: If college was the first time you had significant interaction with people of diverse backgrounds (atheist, non-Christian, Buddhist, gay, lesbian, trans*, people from different cultures or ethnicities than you, etc.), what was that like? Did you have any stereotypes in your mind about those people that were deconstructed?
  • Experiences with academics: If you went to a secular college or a “liberal” Christian college, did you go thinking it would be a battleground for your soul? Was it? Were they any surprises you faced about how the college and its other students treated you?
  • Experience with studies: Were there any topic matters that you excelled at, that you didn’t think you would? Did you realize your homeschooling education was actually pretty well-rounded, or did you realize it was severely lacking in certain areas?
  • Experiences with your parents: Did your parents support your enrollment in college? Did you have to fight with them to be able to go? Were they eager to help you get financial aid? Or did they withhold necessary documents?

Another area you are welcome to submit your thoughts about would be advice you’d give a future homeschool graduate who is heading to college. Potential questions you could answer can include:

  • What words of encouragement would you share with that graduate?
  • What words of caution might you give?
  • Are there any books, articles, or movies you’d suggest that a future homeschooled college student experience before stepping foot on a college campus?
  • If a future homeschooled college student feels uneducated (or miseducated) about important life knowledge (such as sex education, relationship dynamics, pop culture, etc.), what resources would you direct that individual towards?
  • Do you have any suggestions to future homeschooled college students about how to make the transition to college easier?

To contribute your story or thoughts:

Please email your submission (or any questions you have before submitting) to our editorial team at: ha.edteam@gmail.com.

As always, you can contribute anonymously or publicly. Let us know when you email your submission your preference in that regard.

The deadline for submission is Friday, September 18, 2015.

7 comments

  • I’m really looking forward to this series!
    I would love to hear if anyone managed to get financial aid without their parent’s help, or if they managed to register as independent students, and what advice they could offer to other students facing that prospect.

    • I have! I literally just stumbled across this site half an hour ago and have already begun writing. I am under the age of independency, was homeschooled until college, and have managed to obtain financial aid independency. I was just pondering whether or not to include it in my essay, but I will now! 😉

      • How @Rachel? My mom is bucking on allowing me to go to a Catholic college. And is swaying back and forth, on filling out the financial aid.

      • After my two year degree, my parents refused to sign loans or help me continue my education in any way. Things escalated and eventually I was “evicted” from my home. Because I was on my own and under age, I had to get special permission from my school to be considered as an independent student. They required two letters from at least to reputable persons that were not related to me stating that I was independent of my parents, I had to write a personal statement describing the circumstances, as well as fill out a form with some other questions on it in order to override all parental data on my FAFSA form.
        That was the easy part. The difficult part is the FAFSA. Which was fine last year but, for whatever reason this year, is giving me complete trouble. All of my waiver documents have gone through. However, because I was unable to fill out the parental information on my form, it shows as incomplete. On the website is says I should have an option not to provide parental information and carry on with the form, in which case I would fill out those waivers and everything would be processed. But this year, it looks as though they’ve changed something or other and I do not have that option. Leaving my FAFSA incomplete and me having to constantly check to make sure my FA office at school isn’t dropping the ball on processing anything.
        I’ve been printing out screenshots of everything I can, as well as last year’s FAFSA, compared to this year’s FAFSA, and so on, so that I have proof that I did what I was told, should anything go wrong and I can’t receive funds for 2016.

      • Considering your situation my best bet is try and work with her. Considering she regets the whole idea of college, I am hoping for the best. I am also going to be starting my first year. I will be when I start two years behind.

      • @Rachel, did you have to prove you weren’t staying at home any longer?
        I read some conditions saying you had to have a letter from a counselor saying they had done their best and the parents still wouldn’t buck.
        Or else you had to be financially independent for at least a year or three.

      • I did. Because I was kicked out, I had no choice but to go live with my grandmother (who was 91 at the time) in her retirement facility until I could get back on my feet. I was able to secure letters from a former employer as well as my academic advisor from my two year school giving testimony to my condition.
        Continuing to live at home might make this more difficult. However, if you could get someone to co-sign on a personal loan for you, that might be another solution to paying for classes and such.

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