Stranger Things Star Caleb McLaughlin, 17, Is Going to College: 'I'm Pretty Excited'

The Stranger Things stars are growing up.

Speaking to PEOPLE at the season 3 premiere party in Santa Monica, California, last week, Caleb McLaughlin, 17, opened up about his off-screen life and revealed he’ll be starting college in the fall.

“I was home-schooled before I got into Stranger Things,” he said. “I remember when I was in the fifth grade — I was like, ‘I want out of this. I want to do home-schooling. I want to learn on my own leisure.’ I just finished high school, I graduated. So I’m done, but I’m going to college this fall. Just take some courses, online courses. Going to do the home-schooling thing again.”

“I’m pretty excited,” he added. “Just stay educated, man.”

And as the actor prepares for the highly-anticipated season 3 premiere of the hit Netflix series, he admitted that life in the spotlight has its challenges.

“Being a celebrity, you know, it has its twists and turns,” he said. “Not everything is good. Some things are great. I think most of the things are great, but of course, the pressure and just being out there all the time — I’m just glad I have my parents to keep me grounded and be by my side when I’m stressed.”

The third season of the supernatural series drops Thursday, switching the timeline to summer instead of the fall and winter setting of the previous two seasons.

Starring McLaughlin, Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Noah Schnapp and Gaten Matarazzo, Stranger Things premiered in 2016. The acclaimed series was nominated for five Emmy Awards in 2018, including outstanding drama series, outstanding directing and outstanding writing.

The new season will also see the return of series regulars Winona Ryder, David Harbour and Joe Keery.

Season 3 of Stranger Things hits Netflix on Thursday.

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