Tuition aside, what benefits and drawbacks exist by going to school in-state vs. out-of-state?
There are certainly benefits and drawbacks when it comes to your colleges distance from home. One immediate benefit is the opportunity to experience a different part of the country or the world. While "different" doesn't always equate to "better," college is one of the few opportunities in your life where you can suddenly just head off to another location for four years. It can also allow you to establish your contacts in another community or location. If you are from the Midwest but dream of living and working in New York, attending a college in the New York area will allow you to start building friendships and professional contacts. Keep in mind that even if you choose to attend a college closer to home, you can still accomplish these things through study abroad and travel internships, but it would be for a limited time versus a full four year experience.
The greatest drawback to going further from home is being away from family and friends. Students need to realize that you just won't be able to come home whenever you want to. Technology like cell phones and Skype have helped to keep students in touch with those back home, but you have to be comfortable with not being able to be there in person for certain things. I also recommend that prospective students make a visit by themselves to their distant college. How did you like the drive or dealing with the airport? If you have a bad reaction with the experience, it may be an aggravation that grows during your time at that particular college.
In the end, you are most likely to enjoy your college experience and be successful if you have chosen a college that best fits your overall educational needs. Whether it's in your backyard or halfway around the world, the fit is still very important. So don't be to hasty in ruling out a college just because it's too close or too far. If it's the right college, investigate a little further to see how you might be able to deal with your particular drawbacks to the distance from home, either too near or too far.