No matter how much you look forward to college, transitioning to dorm life isn’t always easy. Many freshmen attend university with high hopes for the social life, academic opportunities, and weekend fun that await them. They rarely consider the stress of adjusting and finding ways to ease their transition to college. Plus, you will not have complete independence as dorm rules and restrictions exist. On top of that, you’ll need to learn to ignore the constant interruptions, loud noises, and even conflicts that arise when sharing a house with dozens of other college students. But it doesn’t have to be a significant culture shock. And dorm life is not as difficult as it might seem. Here are just four out of so many reasons why dorm adventures will be your favorite stories to tell grandkids one day.
Reasons why you’ll fall in love with dorm life
When you think about it, dorm life is an integral part of the college experience and a lot of fun. Living in a dorm fosters interaction and friendships among students from all backgrounds who are all experiencing the same transition and getting involved in college together. Students who live in the residence halls have a greater chance of making lasting friendships.
We won’t sugarcoat it – dorm life also comes with a specific set of challenges. In fact, it’s quite a shock for many students as most of them haven’t lived anywhere besides their family homes. But even though you might feel intimidated and scared, that’s all normal. We’re here to show you that dorm life is not as difficult as you might think.
#1 Dorm helps build college community
Dorms play a crucial role in creating a sense of college community among students. The cultivation of school spirit is an integral part of college life. Let’s take crowds at university football games as an example. One of the best ways for college students to connect is through shared experiences such as going to a game. This may be done through anything from wearing matching outfits to wearing face paint.
This sense of togetherness, however, is not limited to the confines of the playing field or court. It serves as the inspiration for some very remarkable university-wide initiatives. For instance, MIT’s annual pumpkin drop. It’s an event where hundreds of students launch pumpkins from the rooftops of campus buildings in a coordinated and musical display.
But fostering community doesn’t require a fancy event; sometimes, it’s as simple as sharing a restroom with twenty strangers in a dorm. You can count on never becoming bored in the dorms.
#2 Dorm life is more convenient and saves you money
Even if you don’t care about the social life, many college students and their families choose to live in dorms because it saves money. Room and board fees at most colleges and universities cover many things, like a furnished dorm room, a meal plan, and access to often-modern recreation facilities like gyms and swimming pools. Compared to living off-campus, the cost of food alone can make a big dent in a family’s budget. And there are transportation costs as well.
No matter how you look at it, living in a dorm is more convenient than almost every other type of college housing. Sure, you might have limited square footage. But you’ll save enough money by living in a dorm to, for example, rent a storage unit for them. And you don’t have to worry about how to find storage on a student budget because there are plenty of affordable options out there.
A large part of the purpose of living in a dorm is to free up students’ schedules so that they may focus on both the academic and social sides of college life. Many campuses provide access to cutting-edge recreation centers with state-of-the-art sports, exercise, and other recreational options. The ease of use extends to the classroom as well.
#3 Dorm gives you a built-in social life
When starting their first day of college, many freshmen feel a wide range of emotions. While leaving home for the first time as a college freshman is a thrilling adventure, for many students, it also means leaving behind friends and relationships. However, this doesn’t mean you’ll always feel lonely.
First of all, you may not hate your roommate as popular movies might have led you to believe. In fact, most colleges and universities have an extensive screening and survey process to pair prospective residents based on study habits and other personality factors. Second, there is always something new to experience. RAs often plan at least a week’s worth of activities to help freshmen and sophomores settle into their dorms and get to know their roommates.
Remember – you are now in close quarters with a group of people experiencing the same roller coaster of emotions as you are. Building friendships and learning the ropes of university life is much easier when you live in a dorm with other individuals who are just as far from home as you are.
#4 You’re free to do (almost) anything you want
When you live at home, your parents can still give you chores, set curfews, and decide what you eat for dinner. Most people don’t get many chances to start making the more grown-up decisions that dorm dwellers do. Therefore, dorm life teaches you responsibilities and gives you a perfect opportunity to develop valuable life skills.
You’ll quickly learn that refusing to vacuum, do laundry, or take out the trash won’t go over well with roommates. After missing a few 8 a.m. classes because you were out too late the night before, you’ll learn to set your curfews. You’ll still be able to eat pre-made food, just like at home, but you’ll get to choose the type of food. So even though you’ll have to follow the rules when you live in a dorm, you can make them in a way that works for you.
On top of that, you’ll have more privacy. After all, your roommate is not your parent, and they don’t watch your every move. Plus, even though many dorms have security systems, you can come and go whenever you want.
We hope our article helped you realize that dorm life is not as difficult as you think. Every beginning can be tricky and overwhelming. But living in a dorm has so many benefits and upsides. We’re sure you’ll quickly adjust and feel silly for even thinking you won’t fit in or like it.