A suitcase school is college that is a predominately residential campus, unlike a commuter school, but where a significant percentage of students go home for the weekend. Suitcase schools tend to be less selective and have a majority of students who live in a close travel radius to the school.
Suitcase schools are a concern for students don’t live close enough to go home every weekend or cannot afford to. Schools that do not have a large number of students on campus on the weekends may close libraries early and have limited cafeteria service Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. A suitcase school will often have fewer activities or social activities available on the weekend.
This makes it difficult for the students on campus to develop close relationships with other students. This can especially cause problems for freshman far from home with no other support system available. The lack of engagement can negate the benefits students received by living on campus.