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I grew up in Colorado Springs — then got the heck out of Dodge when it came time for college. I made a beeline for Southern California.

"What better place to experience life during the free years of self-discovery and alcohol poisoning?" I figured.

But, if you'll pardon the hypocrisy, allow me to say without reservation: You can have an enlightening, revelatory time at college here in the Springs.

No matter what you're looking to get out of your college years, you can find it in this town.

We hope this humble issue of the Indy (with Student Survival Guide coverage starting on p. 21) can help you do that. This city has so much in store for those who choose to look.

We have the mountains instead of the beach, and those are just as fun and even more beautiful. We have clean air, a rare commodity in the L.A. basin. We enjoy the perks of big-city life at a pace that feels like Anytown, USA. Best of all, we have a community of amazing people.

Because the things you remember after school aren't the drinks you have or the grades you earn, but the adventures you have with the people you meet. I found my fiancée Lauralyn in California.

Next year, I'll finally graduate, and we'll move back to Colorado Springs to begin our biggest adventure yet.

I wouldn't dream of having it anyplace else.

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