Undergraduate students have the exciting opportunity to live away from home. Most universities and colleges provide dorms for students, but some also give students the option to live off campus. The off-campus option is usually for the upperclassmen rather than incoming freshmen. In fact, many universities and colleges require freshmen to live on-campus for the first year, which helps ease transition into college.
However, for those of you having a hard time making the decision, here’s a breakdown of the pros and cons of each option.
Pros of Living On Campus
There are many advantages to living in a college dorm. To start with, you are placed right in the middle of a vibrant campus life. That is a huge benefit, as living in the center of a community makes you feel a part of it.
In additional, dorm life essentially means easy living. Living on campus ensures that all kinds of facilities will be easily accessible – from the dining hall to the library to your classrooms. Being in the middle of the campus will also make it more likely for you to make it to your 8 am classes on time.
Living on campus also means that you can be on your school’s meal plan. This means that you won’t have to worry about buying groceries or cooking.
Your school will also provide people to maintain the bathrooms and common areas of your dorm.
Your room will also have Wi-Fi connection, which is a major bonus!
Living on campus puts you within close proximity of many fellow undergraduates. Staying in dorms, especially as a freshman, is a great way to meet people and form friendships. You will always have someone to hang out, or grab lunch, with. The relationships you create will make your college experience even better.
Cons of Living On Campus
However, dorm life does have its drawbacks. Although it’s great to have so many social opportunities right by your living space, it can sometimes be a struggle to focus on work and find some quiet time.
In addition, space and privacy in dorms are often limited. There is a good chance that you’ll be sharing a small-sized room with several people.
Bathrooms are normally communal, which means you might find yourself arguing for shower time.
Pros of Living Off Campus
There are several benefits to living off campus as well. Firstly, off-campus apartments will provide you with more space and privacy. It’s also likely that your apartment will be much quieter than a dorm, which will make it a great place to study.
You have the comfort of knowing that you don’t have to share everything with your peers all the time.
Living off campus allows you to escape the college bubble. It will be a nice break from your college peers.
Off-campus housing will also give you the opportunity to get a taste of independence and adulthood. Your apartment won’t have rules dictated by your college, and you’ll have the freedom to live the way you want.
Cons of Living Off Campus
While living off campus, you might find yourself feeling a little isolated from your classmates. You probably won’t have as many friends living around the corner from you. Also, depending on how far you live from campus, your commute might influence how and when you choose to meet up with friends.
Your class attendance may also be impacted negatively, as it will take more effort to make it to school on time, if at all.
The taste of independence comes with increased responsibility. It will be your duty to take care of amenities and pay bills. Also, you will have to cook for yourself and clean your room as well as the apartment. Although you may have no problem with these tasks, it’s important to remember that these chores will also get in the way of your schedule.
Weighing the Options
There is no right answer when it comes to the on-campus or off-campus debate. Each option has its own set of pros and cons. It’s a decision that comes down to individual preferences. And, even if you end up regretting your choice, remember that the housing situation is only temporary.
Ria is currently a student at Sarah Lawrence College pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Writing and Sociology. She enjoys spending time with friends and family in her free time. She also has a bad habit of starting new tv shows at the most inconvenient times.