The SF State Gator poses outside of Oracle Park for Golden Gate Xpress on May 6. (Garrett Isley / Golden Gate Xpress) (Garrett Isley)
The SF State Gator poses outside of Oracle Park for Golden Gate Xpress on May 6. (Garrett Isley / Golden Gate Xpress)

Garrett Isley

Upcoming Graduates discuss future living plans

Graduates say they base their post-graduation plans off of job opportunities and helping loved ones

May 18, 2022

“Bay Area Exodus” refers to residents of the San Francisco Bay Area who migrate in search of cheaper living options elsewhere. 

The amount of people moving to California has decreased in recent years, which even began pre-pandemic due to high living costs and business relocation to more affordable states.

Some 2022 graduates decided to stay in the Bay Area and in-state due to potential job opportunities or to help their families. They expressed excitement and nervousness at the prospect of graduating or moving.

Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts major Darrel De La Rosa is already used to moving as he left his native San Diego to live in San Francisco. He currently lives on campus with roommates and upon graduation, he plans to move to Daly City to apply for live event jobs. He already applied for the San Francisco Chronicle as an audio engineer to tell stories through sound.

“After graduation, being able to afford to have a place and, you know, put some food on the table is my top priority,” De La Rosa said. 

Computer Science major Rhetta Mae Sevilla posed on the steps near the back entrance to the Cesar Chavez Student Center as she took grad photos in her cap and sash. She currently lives in Oakland with her single mother and said she would stay in the Bay Area because the jobs associated with her major are based here.

“I’m actually open to anything as long as I could find a good workplace that allows us to have good job opportunities for improving in our careers,” Sevilla said. 

Some prospective graduates have been living with family throughout their college experience, such as Business major and East Bay resident Frishta Alefi. She plans to continue living with them for a while after graduation to save money and to spend more time with her family.

Her advice to freshmen who are living with their families is to be thankful for what they have.

“Most people are coming from, you know, far away and they don’t have that sense of home as much, like they have a lot of support if they’re staying at home with their parents,” Alefi said. 

Biology major Cooper Vesak lives by himself a block away from Golden Gate Park in an accessory dwelling unit, which is an independent living space located in the same lot as an existing home.

Vesak said he’s lucky that his family created a college savings account for him, which he uses in addition to a part-time job to pay for his home. He advises incoming freshmen to get out of their parents homes as soon as possible. 

“Do whatever is best for you, I’d say get out of your house as soon as you can,” Vesak said. “But don’t put yourself in debt just to like, not live at home.”

Other students plan on returning home like Business major Harrison Leon Diaz. He said he has a good relationship with his roommates and lives in a dorm at University Park North. At this moment, he plans to move back to Los Angeles where his family and his connections are but Diaz would go wherever he gets a job based on his major.

“If I get an offer in China, I’m going to China, you know what I’m saying, so I’m kind of open minded like that,” Leon Diaz said.

Dayna Florendo is graduating with a degree in Asian American Studies and also lives with her family. She plans to stay in the Bay Area because she currently has a childcare job here, but eventually plans to move out because of how expensive it is to live here. 

She struggled with finding her own space apart from parents during her time in college, especially during peak COVID, which she worries about for all incoming freshmen.

“Like maybe do your homework at school, if that’s where you can focus and maybe like, relax at home,” Florendo said.

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About the Contributors
Photo of Matthew Cardoza
Matthew Cardoza, Copy Editor
Matthew Cardoza (he/him) is the copy editor for Golden Gate Xpress. He is majoring in journalism and minoring in political science. He was born and raised in San Francisco, and still lives in the city. He was previously a part of The Guardsman, the campus newspaper of City College of San Francisco. Matthew likes to write about politics, culture and interesting events on and off campus. In his free time, he likes to drive around San Francisco, rock climb, play video games and hike in the wilderness.
Photo of Rene Ramirez
Rene Ramirez, Multimedia Editor
Rene Ramirez (he/him) is a fourth-year photojournalism major with a minor in race and resistance studies at SF State and is the multimedia editor for Golden Gate Xpress. He is from the Bay Area where he runs and owns his magazine, FIRSTPLACE Magazine. Through this, he has been able to take photos at concerts and music festivals around the country. In his free time, Rene has an addiction to buying cheap 35mm film cameras.
Photo of Garrett Isley
Garrett Isley
Garrett Isley is a photographer from San Diego, CA. He is a senior photojournalism major at SF State covering arts and cultural events across San Francisco. When he doesn’t have a camera in his hand, you can find him skating, at the beach or drawing in the park.

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