Degus are adaptable little creatures and can easily fit into your life style. In my opinion aside from an initial outlay for a good quality cage and accessories they cost no more then any other small animal to keep. They need a small amount of attention each day and they are diurnal so up and about in the day so shouldn't keep you awake at night
If you've got a busy college schedule, it would be better for you to get a pair of Degus, rather than just a Degu. That way they'll be able to keep each other company while you're in class, doing homework, working, etc.
Personally, I find Degus add something really extra special to your life, and would give you a lot of love while you're away from home. If you have about 30 minutes per day to dedicate to letting them out and playing with them, I think you're good to go!
I kept rats my last two years of college and it was great. They really brightened my days and kept me company. There were a few challenges that I faced which you might want to consider. I don't think they are unique to rats.
First proper rat cages are somewhat large (I assume they are for degus as well) and I drive a tiny car. I had to have a nice cage at home and one at school because I could not transport their main cage on a regular basis.
Second, the food they ate was readily available in my town at school, but is not available in my town at home. When I went home for winter/summer vacations I had to make sure I had enough of the food because shipping was very expensive to order it online.
Third, my rats were prone to health problems so I had to make sure I had a good vet in both places. I had to pay attention to what the vets were doing so that when I went to each one I could tell them how the rats had been treated at the other vet and whether it had worked well, etc.
So as everyone else said, make sure you get an apartment that allows them (I dealt with sneaking the rats in and out for a year, it's a pain). Make sure any potential roommates are ok with living with pets. Good luck!
I know college and high school can differ greatly with how occupied you can be and so on, however, I just got my degus yesterday and they seem to want attention from me less than they want attention from each other. Even though they do walk up to the side of the cage and squeak at me, they do really well on their own.
P.S. I'm gonna try to get pics up later, for anyone who wants to see =P
Congrats on the new degus! They will add something special and will probably make the transition to college easier since animals always brighten tough days. I'm in college with maxed units and a full time job and I never find difficulty in taking care of my chinchilla or giving it tons of attention.