When getting ready for the campus, there are many decisions that you undoubtedly have to make. One of the biggest choices is between living on campus or not. You can either stay with your parents or relatives or rent out an apartment nearby. Alternatively, you may opt to live on campus. This article outlines the benefits and disadvantages of living on campus if you choose to.
Pros of living on campus
1. It allows you to make friends: Living on campus enables you to be part of the campus community. This will, in turn, encourage you to make friends. In most universities, living in school enables you to have a roommate. Roommates and hostel mates help you adjust to living away from home, probably for the first time. The residence hall allows students to share spaces with other individuals to assemble.
2. It enables you to improve your academic outcomes: Living on campus contributes to higher grades. According to research done at some public universities, most students who lived on campus achieved higher grades than their counterparts who lived off-campus. It could be because classes, faculty, the library, and the laboratory were closer.
3. It is safe: Universities and colleges are located in secure places. They also hire highly trained security personnel who secure students and university property. The 24- hour security and surveillance are enough to ensure your safety. Safety offices are also always available if you need them. Security personnel is also positioned around hostels, academic buildings, and other university facilities. They look out for illegal substances and high-risk activities to help students stay safe at college parties, sporting events, and social gatherings.
4. It enables you to create your own social life: Living on campus enables you to participate in various student clubs and organizations. These are usually free to join. University-approved organizations and clubs are usually very beneficial to your social life and your academic and spiritual life. Joining such clubs encourages you to try out new things and find out what could interest you out of class. Clubs range from sports, art, cultural organizations, and adventure.
5. It saves your money: Campuses offer accommodation that ranges from basic amenities to utilities such as electricity, water, internet access, gas, and entertainment. It is cheaper than paying for each of them if you opt to live off-campus.
6. It reduces the amount you spend to commute: Living on campus reduces your transport cost to and from school. Everything you need is within walking distance. Therefore, there is no need for any journey that takes longer than 10 minutes. Some campuses even have their own public transit system for students in case the campus housing is not within walking distance to the academic buildings.
7. It saves time: Living on campus enables you to save on time. Classes and faculty are not far from the hall of residence. The amount of time spent between classes and hostels is less than those who commute from home to school. You are therefore less likely to be late for your lectures.
8. It enables you to be independent: Being a freshman on campus, who stays on campus, gives you a good chance to stay away from your family – probably for the first time. It thus becomes your responsibility to take care of yourself and organize your time. Living on campus enables you to learn various life skills in the same way as your fellow counterparts.
9. Resident advisors are available to support you: Most residence halls have resident advisors who offer support and help to students who live on campus. They oversee the safety and well-being of students on designated floors. They also have on-call shifts to handle emergencies. They also help students socialize well in the halls of residence and oversee their interaction.
10. On-campus meals save you time: Many campus students usually depend on dining halls for their meals. Campus dining is typically a time-saving resource that spares students from buying groceries or cooking meals. Campus dining is also a great place for students to socialize.
Cons of living on campus
1. It is costly: Living on campus means paying for the accommodation and the utilities you would need. These include electricity, internet access, food, and water.
2. There is limited privacy: Living on campus means not controlling your privacy. Everything is shared, from hostels, water, bathrooms, and washrooms to classes. Even if you can secure your room, these amenities must be shared.
3. It is difficult to concentrate with friends: Social opportunities such as parties, loud neighbors, roommates, and sporting activities can make it hard to concentrate while living on campus. You may find yourself struggling to focus on your schoolwork.
4. Overindulging: Open access to cafeterias and dining halls can encourage students to graze, even when they aren’t hungry. They, therefore, end up wasting time and idling.
5. Residence may not be consistent: Due to frequent closing of the campus for holidays, the campus residence may not be open at that time. It is because maintenance has to be done on the halls of residence. Therefore, it is paramount that each student moves their belonging from the hall of residence. This makes students keep moving from room to room throughout their stay on campus. It is thus not easy to maintain the same room in the following academic year.
6. Less freedom: Campuses usually have policies that students must adhere to when they choose to live on campus. Some campuses have policies that dictate students’ behavior under on-campus accommodation. These regulations could thus lessen the amount of freedom you expect on campus.
7. Peer pressure: Living on campus means an environment that keeps you away from home and your strict parents. Therefore, it is possible to find yourself engaging in undesirable behavior due to pressure from your friends.
8. Encourages laziness: The distance from the residence halls to classrooms or lecture halls is short. Students may be tempted to delay in hostels, thus being late for lectures.
9. Bullying: It is important to note that bullying exists even in college. Students who are considered too weak to defend themselves face bullying.
10. Homesickness: The tendency to miss home and family is normal, especially among students who have never lived away from home.