Student's Love/Hate Relationship With On-Campus Living

Freshman at Texas Tech are required to live on-campus for at least one year. Photo by Katelyn Perry

Living in dorms is associated with college life, but how do students really feel about the experience?

According to the website for University Student Housing, there are more than 7,000 students living in 14 residence halls on campus – most of those are freshmen who are required to live on campus.

McKenna Chancellor, a freshman education major from Lubbock and an ambassador for student housing, said she believes requiring freshmen to live on campus is very beneficial to students, not only because they can easily walk to class, but because they have the opportunity to mature and learn how to live with someone.

Matthew Dotray, a senior journalism and political science major from Lubbock, said he was grateful for being required to live in the dorms and would not have traded it for anything.

“You get out and meet people,” Dotray said. “You just get thrown out into the thick of things and you adapt.”

Dotray said requiring freshmen to live in the dorms is a great way to help them transition to life on their own. Even though they are technically living on their own, they still have some rules and guidelines they must follow.

Some students have great dorm experiences, Chancellor said the most common complaint they receive from residents are about their roommates.

Kaitlin Norville, an interior design major from Seymour, Texas, said she ended up having two different roommates who were both difficult to get along with.

“Living in close quarters with someone who doesn’t have the same values or other thoughts about life is really hard,” Norville said, “especially when you’re living in a room the size of a cardboard box.”

Norville said her situations were so exhausting, she found they were interfering with her schoolwork. She said this caused her entire time in the dorms to be a negative experience.

Matthew, on the other hand, said he and his roommate were able to get along well and really clicked. He said they would often talk about their common interests, which helped them build a friendship.

Matthew said although he had a good dorm experience, he enjoys living off campus and having a space of his own.

Norville said she was glad to be off campus and in an apartment. She said she loves having her own room and more independence to do what she wants.

Norville said she would advise future students moving into the dorms to get to know their roommates before they move in if possible or to move in with someone you already know.
Dotray said he would advise students to handle conflicts maturely and not keep issues or emotions bottled up.
“Just get along and talk,” Dotray said. “If you have a problem, just talk to your roommate about it.”

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