Here's my take on the whole deal. All my opinion.
I "grew up" loving terminal ATC after observing operations for years and years at terminal facilities, with the occasional rare visit to a center. While I was convinced terminal ATC was the only way to go, I was hired at an en-route center (ZAB).
To this point, I have absolutely loved my experience at the ARTCC (the JOB mind you, definitely not the current management conditions). It has a huge big-picture decision making flavor, and I believe the ARTCC environment is a more comprehensive ATC experience because, short of tower functions, you do a little of everything with the radar.
Approach controllers don't finesse a line of 15, 20, 50 planes to 10 or 20 Miles in Trail. Approach controllers don't make decisions (as often) that can really screw your comrades a sector away if you don't evaluate them carefully. The airspace picture changes more dynamically en-route, particularly when the military comes out to play. ARTCCs often deal with more non-radar controlling. And there's some interesting perspective when you look at the scope and see the dashed outline of an approach control, and you realize that a single sector you are working 10-15 planes in by yourself is potentially 2, 3, 4 (sometimes more) times the size of the entire world of the terminal controller. Heck, the 5 mile bubble around a single aircraft is damned near as volumous as the airspace of an entire Class D tower's airspace.
Then again. ARTCC controllers rarely brute force traffic in line. TRACON controllers, particularly at the busier facilities, sequence aircraft 10 and more deep along a final approach course, often paralleling an equally busy parallel approach. Types of traffic interact more often, with your country bumpkin 172 trying to mix in with 737s and larger at quite a few places. Based on size alone, terminal decisions are generally made more quickly. Terminals are often more proceduralized with corridors automatically keeping your traffic separated from the controller sitting next to you. By god, you might even get to look out the window and actually see the plane you're talking to, not to mention the sun, moon, and clouds, and feel a more direct connection to the ATC you are performing. You might actually get to know the names of everyone in your facility too, not just your area of speciality.
I am loving my ARTCC ATC experience right now, and learning more than I ever imagined. With that said, I think I still want to retire to a decent-sized Tower, TRACON, or (best case) up/down facility. This assumes I stick with performing ATC duties for my whole career.
Now. ARTCCs are few in number relative to terminal facilities. They are often located closer to larger cities (no, I don't define Albuquerque as large). Their training programs are longer and more involved in most cases. They are, however, the highest levels of ATC and traffic count compared to where most people start their ATC careers. Granted, many people are being slung to the likes of A80 or N90 straight off working ATC-12 terminal radar. Their wash-out rate though illustrates that not everyone has the right stuff to work that traffic.
Most terminal controllers will start at a low level tower, making piss poor wages now thanks to the FAA's imposed work rules. They might check out quicker, and in most cases will have an easier time getting promotions and the ability to move to a busier facility. Of course, this involves picking up and moving your life when you are ready to make more money. As well, your promotions aren't quite as set in stone as the ARTCCs. Even if you check out at your low level facility, you need to wait to get picked up by your next facility to get the opportunity to earn more. This is getting tougher to do as virtually every facility in the US is becoming "critically staffed," with ATMs wanting to hold on to their valuable CPC assets. Earning your CTO (possible at CCBC even before you get to the FAA) is highly valuable as well, and opens up job opportunities with the DoD or contract towers after you get sick of the FAA and want to quit because of it's horrible management-employee relations.
For ARTCCs, you can easily spend your entire career there if you wanted to. You can build your life and be reasonably assured you won't be moving any time soon. It may take 3-4 years to check out, but once you're there, you are (basically) at the top of the FAA's still-$hitty pay. At least you aren't quite as poor as your tower counterparts on the whole. Transferring facilities from an ARTCC though right now is getting to be virtually impossible. They are the worst staffed of them all, and save a rare few exceptions or promotions OUT of the controller ranks, it's gonna be a long long time before you can move to a new facility, terminal or ARTCC. There is no CTO to be had either, and as such, you are pretty much restricted to working for the FAA, though there are a handful of DoD radar-only facilities to be had. Anywho, given that the ARTCCs are hard up for people, it's also more likely you will go to an ARTCC if you select states containing those facilities.
Well... I've been writing for a while. Yes, these are my opinions. Yes, I'm sure some may disagree with them. Be absolutely DAMNED sure you want this job right now though. Do your homework with the current status of labor relations and how the pay is a full 30% less than a year and a half ago. If you can, get your degree in something else that is marketable outside of ATC, and just get a minor to check that CTI education box for the pool of applicants. Just because you have your CTI degree doesn't mean you'll be hired right off the bat. It will still take at least some time between degree and OKC, and you'll want to be earning money. At least the FAA decided to give back per-diem at OKC, making that whole thing easier. While, of course, they screwed the 2-2.5 years worth of students that hacked it out there making barely more than minimum wage.
Am I bitter? Never.
Anyway, don't F up your decision, OK?