Your location may improve, diminish or have little effect on your prospects for admission. It depends upon where you live and to which institutions you apply.  A number of public colleges and universities give preference to in-state students, so for example, if you are a resident of North Carolina and seeking admission at UNC Chapel Hill, you are likely to have better odds of earning admission than a student with similar credentials who lives in Florida. In contrast, a number of selective private institutions seek geographic diversity and may give a slight edge to someone living far away or in a less populated region of the country. For instance, Columbia may accept a student from Billings, Montana over a student residing in Newark, New Jersey, all else being equal. Finally, in other cases, your hometown may play little role in the admissions process.