Adjusting to life in ATL

By: Jeneice  George – Health Policy and Management
Moving across the country from my home state of California was not easy. It was pretty daunting when I was preparing for the big move a couple weeks prior. I have lived in California my whole and never lived out of state before, so the thought about living so far from my friends and family was nerve wracking. I graduated college back in 2017 and moved back home to save money. Not only was I worried about getting around ATL, I was worried about the financial expenses and standard of living. Once I made the big move, I found how relatively inexpensive ATL was compared to Los Angeles, which was where I lived for 4 years while attending undergrad. ATL has a lot of eateries that you can explore that will not put a burn in your pocket such as Tin Lizzy’s in Emory Point or Blaze Pizzas in Emory commons. Los Angeles is expensive in general, especially in regard to apartments in Westwood, near UCLA. The cost of living is definitely lower in ATL than Los Angeles since I can have my own bedroom, unlike LA. I lived in a house in North Druid Hills and for my own room, I was paying less than 600 excluding internet. In LA I was paying over 650 for 1 bedroom that I shared with 2 other roommates.

Along with having a decent place to live, budgeting is another major important factor to prepare for prior to moving to ATL. Unfortunately, when I was going to school, I did not spend a lot of time planning a monthly budget. I tried to be as fiscally responsible as I can, however with movie releases such as Hunger Games series and Marvel movies, I was finding it a challenge to keep my spending to a minimum each month. However, after starting school in Emory, I realized how important it is to keep track of spending and make sure I don’t overspend. I have found Microsoft Excel’s monthly budget documents extremely helpful. You can even download a budgeting app and list all of your monthly expenses, including rent, groceries, and monthly bills such as car insurance or cell phone. Keeping up with your spending and setting a particular budget will ensure that have the financial means to meet your obligations or any emergency that may come up. Furthermore, having an emergency fund or savings account will come in handy when something unexpected comes up.

I know all these considerations to think about once you make your move to ATL to get a great education an amazing institution like Rollins may seem overwhelming but when you think about the return on investment for a Rollins Education, it will be worth it. Making the sacrifice to move so far away into a completely new area and state I’ve never visited, being from the West coast, has motivated me even more to go for what I want and take advantage of everything Rollins has. What makes Rollins worth the trip and stress is the fact that it is very well-regarded in the public health field. Not only that, but the resources and Office of Career Development are beyond amazing and helpful for preparing you for the working world. I have attended multiple workshops hosted by the Career Development office, as well as one-on-one meetings with the career counselors, and they are very beneficial in assisting with my resume, cover letters, and even help with my internship and job search. All the resources and services Rollins offers are invaluable and will prepare you for your chosen career.

Now that I’ve been in ATL and Rollins for the past few months, I am adjusting to the new environment slowly but surely. Just know that if you are coming from the West, Northwest, Northeast, or anywhere else, you are not alone in being in a whole new environment and have to learn your way around a huge city like ATL. Good luck with your decision and welcome to Rollins!