Money constraint is the topmost problem in college. However, it is not the sole problem that students worry about on a daily basis. Mere subsistence is a struggle in itself. The need to adjust to living independently; getting along with dorm mates; sharing facilities with non-family members; peer pressure; and all the nitty gritty that hit you here and there.
Typical College Dorm Life You Need to Know About
- Dorms have rules and regulations. Rules are common everywhere and college dormitories are no exception. Every student is given assigned tasks to complete. And a curfew is implemented. Should you need to step out of the dorm after the curfew, you need to ask permission from the RA.
- There is no such thing as Privacy in dorms. It is impossible to get alone time given the limited space and the number of people residing. You need to get out of your way to find ways to gather your thoughts and relax.
- The roommate surprise. Most likely, you don’t get to choose your roommate. And you will have to bear with his habits (the good and the bad) until the end of term. Lucky if you end up with a good one; otherwise you will need to learn few tricks on how to deal with it.
- Room space is very limited. A standard space area for every student is provided. However, this is not enough for all necessities. You will need to find ways to maximize the limited space without sacrificing your comfort. It is easier to manage with only 2 occupants in a room since you will most likely divide the room – left or right. It becomes added trouble when there are multiple occupants though.
- Bathroom is shared by almost everybody. The dorm bathroom is shared by multiple students. Hence, expect it to get dirty at some point. Fortunate if the person using ahead of you cleans the stall before leaving; otherwise you will need to clean it yourself. Also, it is impossible to spend a bath a few minutes longer than the allowed time. So, you need to maximize your time well. Moreover, you need to get up early to take a bath so you won’t get caught up when majority of your dorm mates are rushing in.
- Laundry time is a challenge. Dorms usually have washing machines but these are not enough to accommodate all the occupants at the same time. So, you need to wisely schedule your laundry; else you end up taking your laundry outside the campus.
- Studying is next to impossible. Studying inside the dorm is a struggle with so many people and distractions surrounding. Worst if you are sharing a room with more than 3 people – it would be next to impossible. It is best to find the best time to study preferably at night when most people are asleep.
- Printing is a hassle. Some dorms provide printers as convenience to students. But this becomes an inconvenience when majority rely on the dorm printers – expect queuing of printing tasks. It is best to have your own printer inside your room to get everything done without trouble. No need to worry about the consumables though since budget-friendly toner cartridges are available online.
- Homesickness will hit you anytime. The longing never goes away despite being surrounded with hundreds to thousands of students and getting busy with college activities.
- Peer pressure is tenfold. You meet all sorts of people – the nerds, cool ones, and those who like to smoke, drink, and dope. Some students indulge in the wrong habits, start drinking, smoking, or partying. And due to peer pressure, many fall into similar bad habits, thus spoiling the important years of their life.
- Any student can be a target of bullying. If you end up being a target, you need to know how to deal with it; else your mental and physical health will suffer.
There are countless of reasons why no one tells you about the reality of living in college dorms. One, the struggles differ from one student to the other. Two, the mix of dorm mates bring about a different experience. And three, it is best to enter a new world with no expectations whatsoever, discover the realities along the way, and ride with the tide.