My son has already locked in his housing choice for 2014-2015 year at college. He informed me that all his friends were selecting “the Quad”, a residence hall made up of units with four private bedrooms that share 2 bathrooms and a “living room”, and that he was selecting that option as well.
I think this is a great idea. There are cheaper options, including living off campus, but I see this as a way to have some of the good stuff of living off campus while still having some control of the surroundings. Having lived in different apartments in this same college town, I remember the different venues offered different life lessons such as: you can wear three sweatshirts inside to stay warm, walls don’t always keep you from hearing your neighbor’s conversation and apartments feel more claustrophobic if you don’t clean and declutter occasionally. Already Calvin is learning about the last lesson in his 14 ft x 11 ft dorm room that is shared with a roommate. Calvin has always been a bit of a “horizontal filer” (meaning all his belongings are on any horizontal surface) but now with limited space that must be shared, he is becoming a little more creative.
Other great things about living on campus: fire alarms and sprinklers in the buildings, tornado shelters and campus wide warnings, and from a student’s perspective, the ability to get up 15 minutes before class starts and still make it on time.
Like many young people, my son is chomping at the bit to be grown up. To be on his own. And I’m glad he feels that way. However, there are so many years ahead of apartment living, commuting and paying bills that I think he should enjoy these years on campus that are relatively carefree when it comes to housing, food and commuting. Perspective is a funny thing.