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That's a good choice, David. Not only for your needs but it will also hold its value well long term.
I wasn't as bright. My youngest gets his license in a few weeks so we had been looking for a new vehicle for SWMBO and in turn were going to hand her current Jeep down to him. One thing led to another and I made the decision to just buy a new car for him as well with the thought it would carry him through HS and college and beyond a bit. Looked at all the stuff suggested here for you and more in the small but not compact variety. Really wanted a smallish SUV/crossover for utility and such. Thinking fully loaded down trips to school, etc. Came thisclose to a KIA, either Seltos or the redesigned Soul but in the end it didn't work out.
Anyway, we ended up on the darkside. Double dipping where they both picked out new rides. Can't believe I bought not just one but two...Chevys.
The boy got a Trailblazer RS. SWMBO got the bigger Blazer RS all blacked out. That will be a joy to keep clean and detailed. Got hers for a hell of a lot less than the vehicle she originally wanted was going to cost me which made his pretty much "free" in that perspective. I'm calling that a win.
Congrats on the new job, David! My son just bought his first car and I have to admit, it's really nice and gets great gas mileage. He bought a 2015 Focus sedan. Small but not too small, peppy with some nice features and about 30-40 mpg on the highway. I really like it and he got it as a certified used car with 45K on it. Something to consider......