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Old 12-30-2016, 12:31 PM
 
31 posts, read 27,663 times
Reputation: 27

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Hi all,

I'm currently a second semester junior at a public university in Illinois. I will graduate in the Spring of 2018 with an Adult & Community Education degree with a Spanish minor and Latin American Studies minor (it was only two more classes). I know mentioning my student loan burden is important to include in terms of budgeting, ect. That said, I will have approximately $35,000 is student loans once I graduate.

That said, my degree is very human service-oriented. Anticipated job placement ranges from non-profits (not on the top of my list), workforce development, student success centers at college/universities, and community efforts for non-English speaking individuals (hence, my chosen minors). My take-home income will probably be around the same as my student loans, which isn't not great. However, that's also based off central Illinois economy and cost of living.

I have done previous research and I know that Denver is relatively expensive. That said, please don't tear me a new one for asking questions. I only say that because one user berated and blew off my inquiry all the while answering none any of my questions. If it's too expensive, I'll find another option. I think that's a pretty simple formula for success.

1. Is rent genuinely too high for a human service worker? I mentioned my anticipated income. I do plan to get a second job for nights and weekends to supplement my income. Are roommates a reliable option, given the price? Cheaper suburbs, 20-30 minutes away? I don't plan on living in the thick of the city by any means.

2. What's the weather like? I have family that lives in Arvada and they constantly rave about the weather despite the insane amount of snow they receive during the winter. Does this hold true?

3. I know that Denver is roughly 30% Hispanic. That's awesome in terms of my minor but is Denver's human services sector well-funded/supported? I know in Illinois, human services are constantly facing budget cuts.

4. Is Denver easily adaptable? I mean that in the most literal sense. I come from a very small farming town of 4,400 people. After getting my feet wet, some experience and know-how, is Denver is a pretty easy place to commute in? Driving vs. public transportation, specifically.

5. This really is not as important to others as it is to me, but what's the music scene like? I'm an avid concert goer and I know that Denver is the one-stop city before bands typically head to Cali. That said, are there more "commercial" venues (big name acts) as well as "independent" venues (smaller, up-and-coming acts). What are some of your favorites?

6. I know that Denver is big on their microbreweries which is a really cool aspect! However, what is their local business, restaurant, and retail "vibe" like? Plenty of options? I imagine there are but that's why I ask!

7. Lastly, this isn't specific just to Denver, but what colleges/universities are close to Denver? Graduate school is a definite possibility, and I know UC-Boulder isn't too far away, but are there any options a little closer?

I can't really think of anything else at the moment. If you have any more information, suggestions, hints, tips, or fun facts, please let me know! I genuinely appreciate your help! Thank you so much!
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Old 12-30-2016, 12:50 PM
 
64 posts, read 52,091 times
Reputation: 41
Why have you specifically chosen Denver vs other cities?
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Old 12-30-2016, 01:00 PM
 
31 posts, read 27,663 times
Reputation: 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by ITNerd View Post
Why have you specifically chosen Denver vs other cities?
I have family relatively close and I have always wanted to live in a big city. I've visited before (a few years ago) and loved it. It had a very nice feel and my relatives rave about it.
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Old 12-30-2016, 02:55 PM
 
Location: In The Thin Air
12,252 posts, read 8,040,413 times
Reputation: 8907
As far as concert venues we have one of the best in the states IMHO. Red Rocks is incredible.
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Old 12-30-2016, 03:44 PM
 
Location: The Berk in Denver, CO USA
13,950 posts, read 20,207,715 times
Reputation: 22581
1. The suburbs are not that much cheaper.
2. You will laugh at the Winter weather.
3. No clue
4. Yes, as everyone is from somewhere else.
5. I understand that is OK-good.
6. Thriving. Yes.
7. University of Denver (DU), University of Colorado - Denver (CU - Denver), Metro

Two items in greater are way more expensive than small-town Illinois:
1. rent
2. registration fees for a new auto
Everything else is about the same.
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Old 12-30-2016, 11:03 PM
 
214 posts, read 192,584 times
Reputation: 380
Quote:
Originally Posted by darrenlamb45 View Post
Hi all,

I'm currently a second semester junior at a public university in Illinois. I will graduate in the Spring of 2018 with an Adult & Community Education degree with a Spanish minor and Latin American Studies minor (it was only two more classes). I know mentioning my student loan burden is important to include in terms of budgeting, ect. That said, I will have approximately $35,000 is student loans once I graduate.

That said, my degree is very human service-oriented. Anticipated job placement ranges from non-profits (not on the top of my list), workforce development, student success centers at college/universities, and community efforts for non-English speaking individuals (hence, my chosen minors). My take-home income will probably be around the same as my student loans, which isn't not great. However, that's also based off central Illinois economy and cost of living.

I have done previous research and I know that Denver is relatively expensive. That said, please don't tear me a new one for asking questions. I only say that because one user berated and blew off my inquiry all the while answering none any of my questions. If it's too expensive, I'll find another option. I think that's a pretty simple formula for success.

1. Is rent genuinely too high for a human service worker? I mentioned my anticipated income. I do plan to get a second job for nights and weekends to supplement my income. Are roommates a reliable option, given the price? Cheaper suburbs, 20-30 minutes away? I don't plan on living in the thick of the city by any means.

2. What's the weather like? I have family that lives in Arvada and they constantly rave about the weather despite the insane amount of snow they receive during the winter. Does this hold true?

3. I know that Denver is roughly 30% Hispanic. That's awesome in terms of my minor but is Denver's human services sector well-funded/supported? I know in Illinois, human services are constantly facing budget cuts.

4. Is Denver easily adaptable? I mean that in the most literal sense. I come from a very small farming town of 4,400 people. After getting my feet wet, some experience and know-how, is Denver is a pretty easy place to commute in? Driving vs. public transportation, specifically.

5. This really is not as important to others as it is to me, but what's the music scene like? I'm an avid concert goer and I know that Denver is the one-stop city before bands typically head to Cali. That said, are there more "commercial" venues (big name acts) as well as "independent" venues (smaller, up-and-coming acts). What are some of your favorites?

6. I know that Denver is big on their microbreweries which is a really cool aspect! However, what is their local business, restaurant, and retail "vibe" like? Plenty of options? I imagine there are but that's why I ask!

7. Lastly, this isn't specific just to Denver, but what colleges/universities are close to Denver? Graduate school is a definite possibility, and I know UC-Boulder isn't too far away, but are there any options a little closer?

I can't really think of anything else at the moment. If you have any more information, suggestions, hints, tips, or fun facts, please let me know! I genuinely appreciate your help! Thank you so much!
Unless you are really into mountain sports (skiing, hiking, mountain climbing, mountain biking, etc) I would look towards a mid sized Midwestern city. Maybe try Madison WI or some other Midwestern mid sized college town. You will pay roughly half as much in rent and won't have to worry about rent increases that easily exceed your yearly raise. Also, if you are working tons of hours to pay the high rent prices you probably won't be able to get out much to enjoy what Colorado has to offer.
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Old 12-31-2016, 07:45 AM
 
Location: Washington Park, Denver
6,905 posts, read 6,501,326 times
Reputation: 7355
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirty-Mill View Post
Unless you are really into mountain sports (skiing, hiking, mountain climbing, mountain biking, etc) I would look towards a mid sized Midwestern city. Maybe try Madison WI or some other Midwestern mid sized college town. You will pay roughly half as much in rent and won't have to worry about rent increases that easily exceed your yearly raise. Also, if you are working tons of hours to pay the high rent prices you probably won't be able to get out much to enjoy what Colorado has to offer.
Job opportunities in a mid sized college town are so much worse. Horrible advice.

Dip your toe in the water here and give it a try. Worst that happens is that it doesn't work out and you move back.

Are you open to having a roommate? It will help make the cost of housing less an issue.

Bar and restaurant scene is very good. Live music is the best for a city this size in the country outside of Austin and Nashville. Red Rocks is the best venue in the country. The Ogden and The Fillmore are good smallish venues, but there are others. Cervantes is a very small venue that gets pretty good acts. If you are in to EDM, bluegrass, or jam bands, we have arguably the best scene in the country. We also get the big arena shows at Pepsi Center. Smaller arena shows are at 1st Bank center. Phish plays a 3 night run every year at the outdoor soccer stadium, Dick's Sporting Goods Field. Big stadium shows come to the Broncos Stadium.

Belly Up in Aspen is only a few hours away and is a tiny venue that gets top acts. Telluride Bluegrass is among the best festivals in the country. Lyons Bluegrass is getting to be one of the best.

Last edited by SkyDog77; 12-31-2016 at 08:08 AM..
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Old 12-31-2016, 08:02 AM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,889 posts, read 102,319,187 times
Reputation: 32951
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirty-Mill View Post
Unless you are really into mountain sports (skiing, hiking, mountain climbing, mountain biking, etc) I would look towards a mid sized Midwestern city. Maybe try Madison WI or some other Midwestern mid sized college town. You will pay roughly half as much in rent and won't have to worry about rent increases that easily exceed your yearly raise. Also, if you are working tons of hours to pay the high rent prices you probably won't be able to get out much to enjoy what Colorado has to offer.
Oh Golly, why do that? All of those places are highly over-rated, and they're still the midwest!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkyDog77 View Post
Job opportunities in a mid sized college town are so much worse. Horrible advice.

Dip your toe in the water here and give it a try. Worst that happens is that it doesn't work out and you move back.

Are you open to having a roommate? It will help make the cost of housing less an issue.

Bar and restaurant scene is very good. Live music is the best for a city this size in the country outside of Austin and Nashville.
Agreed.
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Old 12-31-2016, 10:34 AM
 
214 posts, read 192,584 times
Reputation: 380
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katarina Witt View Post
Oh Golly, why do that? All of those places are highly over-rated, and they're still the midwest.
Not overrated, most people don't think very highly of the entire middle section of the U.S... which is understandable. I would say it's accurately rated.
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Old 12-31-2016, 10:35 AM
 
Location: Parker, CO
1,080 posts, read 2,732,173 times
Reputation: 1761
I've typed some answers to your questions below. You seem like you have a good head on your shoulders and are planning accordingly. You're young and this is the time in your life to take chances and follow your dreams. I would highly suggest spending more time here to see if Denver is a good fit. I know you mentioned that you have family in Arvada. Do you think they'd allow you to come stay with them for a short time after you graduate? It's typically easier to find a job locally and when you have a local address on your resume, but of course, that isn't always the case. Best of luck if you decide to make the move here!

Hi all,

I'm currently a second semester junior at a public university in Illinois. I will graduate in the Spring of 2018 with an Adult & Community Education degree with a Spanish minor and Latin American Studies minor (it was only two more classes). I know mentioning my student loan burden is important to include in terms of budgeting, ect. That said, I will have approximately $35,000 is student loans once I graduate.

That said, my degree is very human service-oriented. Anticipated job placement ranges from non-profits (not on the top of my list), workforce development, student success centers at college/universities, and community efforts for non-English speaking individuals (hence, my chosen minors). My take-home income will probably be around the same as my student loans, which isn't not great. However, that's also based off central Illinois economy and cost of living.

I have done previous research and I know that Denver is relatively expensive. That said, please don't tear me a new one for asking questions. I only say that because one user berated and blew off my inquiry all the while answering none any of my questions. If it's too expensive, I'll find another option. I think that's a pretty simple formula for success.

1. Is rent genuinely too high for a human service worker? I mentioned my anticipated income. I do plan to get a second job for nights and weekends to supplement my income. Are roommates a reliable option, given the price? Cheaper suburbs, 20-30 minutes away? I don't plan on living in the thick of the city by any means. You'd probably be a bit tight, but I'm sure you can make it work. Many people live in Denver on lower salaries, and your income will continue to grow as you gain experience and move up in your career. I would suggest trying to find roomates, especially while you are paying down student loan debt. Like another poster mentioned, some of the suburbs can be just as expensive as the city (it really depends). I would start searching craigslist to get a feel for general prices. Lakewood and Aurora come to mind as some of the suburbs that are a little cheaper. Living near work is also a good way to cut down on commuting expenses.

2. What's the weather like? I have family that lives in Arvada and they constantly rave about the weather despite the insane amount of snow they receive during the winter. Does this hold true? This is our little secret, haha. In all truth, the summers are less humid and the winters are much more mild than the Midwest. We do get a fair amount of snow, but it generally melts quickly. I lived in Chicago for 2 years and the winters there are much, much worse than Denver's.

3. I know that Denver is roughly 30% Hispanic. That's awesome in terms of my minor but is Denver's human services sector well-funded/supported? I know in Illinois, human services are constantly facing budget cuts. I am not super familiar with the human services sector, but it seems well supported. Your Spanish language skills are a huge asset and will make you much more employable.

4. Is Denver easily adaptable? I mean that in the most literal sense. I come from a very small farming town of 4,400 people. After getting my feet wet, some experience and know-how, is Denver is a pretty easy place to commute in? Driving vs. public transportation, specifically. I find Denver pretty adaptable. Of course, coming from a very small town, you'll have to adjust to being in a larger metro area, but if you're an adaptable person, you should adjust just fine. Traffic here can be pretty bad, but that's to be expected in any sizable metro.

5. This really is not as important to others as it is to me, but what's the music scene like? I'm an avid concert goer and I know that Denver is the one-stop city before bands typically head to Cali. That said, are there more "commercial" venues (big name acts) as well as "independent" venues (smaller, up-and-coming acts). What are some of your favorites? I think the other posters have covered this one pretty well

6. I know that Denver is big on their microbreweries which is a really cool aspect! However, what is their local business, restaurant, and retail "vibe" like? Plenty of options? I imagine there are but that's why I ask! There are plenty of local mom and pop types of businesses, which I love to support. I don't really consider myself a "foodie," but it seems that the restaurant scene is pretty hot at the moment and you should be able to find most any type of cuisine you desire. Retail is the same... there are plentiful options and you should be able to find anything you are looking for.

7. Lastly, this isn't specific just to Denver, but what colleges/universities are close to Denver? Graduate school is a definite possibility, and I know UC-Boulder isn't too far away, but are there any options a little closer? Denver University, Regis University, and University of Colorado Denver all come to mind.

I can't really think of anything else at the moment. If you have any more information, suggestions, hints, tips, or fun facts, please let me know! I genuinely appreciate your help! Thank you so much!
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