Starting to prepare... Cutting unneccessary bills, touching up on my spanish, etc...
Here's the general route I'll be taking
Have you considered the University of Tennessee at Knoxville? If you are a Tennessee resident, you will get in-state tuition rates, and you may also be eligible for the lottery scholarships. There is good flyfishing for trout in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP), the adjoining National Forest, and nearby TVA tailwaters. There is an event called "Troutfest" in Townsend, TN, which is adjacent to one of the entrances to the GSMNP. This year it is May 18-20. You can get a good feel for the fishing in the area. The year-round weather is about as good as you will find in the continental US. I have met people who have moved here from other states because of the climate. You would be a one-day drive from the Florida panhandle.
Reads like a plan. Personally, I'd take Florida over Tennessee or Seattle any day.
You've never mentioned what you want to study. Edison College and Florida Gulf Coast University are in Ft Myers, among others.
From a fishing-standpoint, not much bad about the area. Snook, reds, tarpon.
With boomers like me getting old, a healthcare career would be a good choice and FGCU offers degrees in that area.
I visit Ft Myers fairly often for work. it's not as old as you'd think.