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Should I move into the dorms or live at home?

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This topic contains 14 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by avatar anonykins 1 week, 1 day ago.

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  • #756267 Reply
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    Izzy

    I will be going to my dream university as a transfer student and I have to make the decision of moving in to the dorms or staying at home. I live 25 min away from campus. If I move to the dorms my university will pay for half of the cost and I will only have to pay $8,000 for a whole years rent which is a pretty good deal since everything else is covered (tuition,books, and work study) But the only problem is if I move out I’m afraid that I’ll just be going home a lot because I’m very family oriented and stuck with the same friend group for so long but if I move out I’ll be put in a new environment and maybe break this routine life. I really don’t know what to do but the $8,000 is also a huge factor even though others can see it as a “half off price take the good deal” others may say “it’s a 25 min drive save the 8,000”Please help and thank you for your time.

    #756308 Reply
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    JD

    I think it depends how easy the 8k is for you. If it will put you into debt no stay home. You don’t need to graduate with debt or more debt than you would’ve. If it’s readable I’d move into the dorms. 25 mins isn’t far but can be a real bitch when you’ve been up all night finishing a paper or studying. Plus you’ll get the social aspect of the dorms, living in your own, etc which is a good thing and important for growth. I don’t think there’s a wrong answer but avoid unnecessary debt when you can.

    #756309 Reply
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    Fyodor

    I don’t know enough about your finances to say how much of a burden the 8k will be but all other things being equal (and I understand that that they’re not) I would live in the dorms. I was pretty homesick my first semester but it was a great growth experience and I made some great friends that I am still close with more than 20 years later. Learning to live away from your parents, manage roommate relationships, etc is a pretty useful life skill.

    #756313 Reply
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    dinoceros
    Member

    If you can, moving into the dorms is good. It helps you be an adult and branch out. I work with students, and the ones who commute tend to have a harder time making friends and sometimes even have a hard time academically. I’ve had students who missed exams due to car trouble or who had trouble getting themselves to campus for an 8am class (or always chose not to go to office hours or tutoring because it was inconvenient).

    You talk passively about how you might go home a lot. That’s something you can control. You can make a decision to stay on campus most weekends and actually get out there. It’s not something that you’re going to just watch yourself do and have no control over.

    #756314 Reply
    rosie posie
    rosie posie
    Participant

    As someone who lived at home when going to college I agree that living on campus and venturing out on your own is important if you can swing it. If you can’t there is nothing wrong with that either. Living at home while going to school and working allowed me to save up and get my first apartment 2 weeks after graduating, sans roommate. I have a family member who received a similar deal to what you have been offered. Keep in mind that when you live on campus you often *have* to have their meal plan which can add thousands to your costs. I would get a full sense of what it will cost you to live on campus per year and then sit down and lay out all the pros and cons.

    #756315 Reply
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    ron

    I lived at home to save $. It saved me from going into debt for college, but had the downside of making it very difficult to integrate into campus life. I had, if anything, a better atmosphere for academic study — hitting the library wasn’t a problem, but missed out on much of the making contacts part of college. Socially it wasn’t a big deal, because I attended an all-male school, which most engineering schools still were at the time. I know you will miss out on a lot of the college experience by living at home.

    #756328 Reply
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    MMR

    I vote to stay on campus, if it’s possible. I think post-secondary is about more than just the academics; the social part of it is huge, and you’ll miss out on a lot of it if you’re at home. This is particularly true if you’re very family oriented and have a lot of old friends around. Getting out of your childhood environment will really let you develop as an individual, and open you up to new experiences.

    It’s true that $8000 is a lot of money, and student debt sucks (I know from experience), but I personally think this is worth it.

    #756864 Reply
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    K

    If you have the money to do so, stay on campus. Maybe you can get a part time job to help cover the expenses. My boyfriend didn’t live at home during college, but lived with his brother in an apartment. He missed out on much of the college experience, and doesn’t keep in touch with many people from college. I lived in the dorms during college and had a great experience, and I’m still close today with many college friends, including one of my freshman year suitemates. The money is worth the experience, in my opinion.

    #756870 Reply
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    anonykins

    One important thing that I haven’t seen addressed is that you will be a transfer student to this school. I work in higher ed and at my institution, the social/making friends aspect of living on campus is much more pronounced during freshman year. Transfer students have the option to live on campus, but don’t seem to get much out of it and most choose not to. This could be super different at your university – mine has a low transfer rate, yours is maybe higher? It also depends how old you would be in comparison to the other students living on campus as to how much you’d get out of the experience socially. I would ask around to find out whether it’s common to live on campus after transferring, if there are specific housing options that are more likely to help you integrate socially, etc

    I would also think about the type of loan you’d possibly need to take out to cover the additional cost of living on campus, if you are in the US. If it’s a private (not federal) loan, I would think really, really hard before taking on that debt. Federal loans aren’t all sunshine and rainbows either, but they’re almost always a better option than a private loan. See your school’s financial aid office for more info!

    #756886 Reply
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    Autumnrose
    Member

    I vote staying on campus for the first semester. That way come second semester you can go home or stay. This would be a great learning point on how to pay bills, save money, management money, and etc. You might end up wanting to live with roomates or join a sorority.

    #756888 Reply
    Copa
    Copa
    Participant

    I dunno. I do think there are benefits to staying on campus like others have pointed out, but I also remember my freshman year, we had a transfer student in our hall who was a junior. I know it’s only a two year age gap, but I think she felt out of place being surrounded by 18-year-olds. At my university, it was common to spend two years in the dorms and two years in off-campus housing, so a junior in the dorms seemed “old.” Maybe some schools put all the transfer students together in the same dorm, but mine didn’t. This is something I’d look into. But, I don’t know that it would hurt to live in the dorms for one semester to see what the experience is like. Another option may be to find an off-campus living situation with roommates who are your year/age.

    • This reply was modified 1 week, 4 days ago by Copa Copa.
    #756892 Reply
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    JD

    I agree with Copa. At my school if you were beyond a sophomore and lived in the dorms it was really weird. Not all schools may be that way. An off campus living situation could be good plus it’s kind of a right of passage for a lot of people. Freedom, parties, fun with roomies. I never did this. I despise living with people, but i knew enough people who did that i envied it a bit. It could be a lot more than the dorms though when you considering utilities, no meal plan, cost of the keg (ha)…

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