Dorms still an option after freshman year

Ayesha Patel, junior in LAS, studies in her room in Snyder Hall. Patel decided to live in the residence halls and become a residential advisor because she had a good experience her first two years. Brad Meyer

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Ayesha Patel, junior in LAS, studies in her room in Snyder Hall. Patel decided to live in the residence halls and become a residential advisor because she had a good experience her first two years. Brad Meyer

By Ruth Kakumanu

One of the reasons why Ji Soo Hyun chose to live in the same residence hall room for a second year is the view of the campus from her twelfth floor corner triple at Illinois Street Residence Hall.

“The view is spectacular,” said Hyun, a sophomore in LAS. “When you are stressed out, you can look out the window and relax. When it is raining, you can see the thunder and lightning.”

As students consider housing options for the next school year, University Housing is an ever-present choice between apartments and fraternity and sorority houses. With 22 undergraduate residence halls available, University Housing is the choice of more than 8,000 students each year, according to the University Housing Web site.

“It is good to live in the dorms as a sophomore and get to meet new people,” said Ayesha Patel, a junior in LAS and resident advisor in Snyder Hall. “Apartments are not great socially because you cannot go down to dinner and meet new people. They are restrictive.”

Tom Powers, sophomore in LAS, said the dining halls was one of his motives for returning to Hopkins Hall.

“I want food and I do not want to worry about cost,” he said.

He also said that in addition to the atmosphere of the residence halls and living on campus, knowing which room to pick during housing reassignment appealed to him.

Other students enjoy the ease of dining halls, too.

“You do not have to cook your own food. There is late night, where you can grab a quick bite before class,” Patel said. “If you live in an apartment, you will be starving and living on Ramen all the time. Well, maybe some of the time.”

Another important aspect is the effect upperclassmen may have on incoming freshmen.

“My freshman RA went beyond the call of duty helping me transition smoothly between high school and college. Now, I want to help other residents transition well,” said Tim McIlvain, sophomore in LAS.

“Sophomores and other upperclassmen have a lot more experience and a social life set out already. They are not as involved with dorm activities. Yet upperclassmen can help underclassmen. It is always better to hear advice from other students.”

As a returning student, McIlvain said that living in a residence hall again is more comfortable than freshman year. He added that he tries to be helpful to new people, and he chose the residence halls because he disliked the hassle involved with apartment hunting.

“The apartment process was really hectic and early in the semester. I did not know who I wanted to lease with, and the dorms were convenient,” said Lauren Hilton, a sophomore in LAS referring to her choice to stay in the residence halls. “Why not take advantage of a relaxed year in the dorms before responsibilities come into play?”

Although there are drawbacks such as the dining halls, lack of personal space and loud nights, Hilton said she enjoys the community at Snyder Hall.

“I do not think the negative aspects should deter you from living in the dorms,” she added.