Education: Seven Reasons

In researching residences (also known as dormitories) at Universities, we have compiled 2 lists to help newcomer youth heading off to University make their decision – Should I live in residence or continue to live at home?

by Sandra Fletcher

7 Reasons You Want to Move Into Residence

1. Meet New People – You should at least TRY to get along with your roommate(s). Being friends with your roommate, or at least getting along reasonably well with them, will be a key factor in having a good experience. Even if you don’t get along very well, always make an effort to be civil, since living with a person you’re constantly fighting with can be pretty miserable. In addition, take time to meet your other dorm mates. Some of your closest friendships, both while in school and after graduation, will be with the people you meet at this time of your life.

2. Just for Fun – Getting involved will provide you with a great opportunity to meet the people in your residence, make new friends and connections and enrich your experience in general. Parties can be fun – being with like-minded people doing things that you like to do. But, you can always find ways to avoid dorm-life scenarios that you don’t wish to be part of, such as late-night partying, substance use or abuse or any activity that doesn’t fit with your religious or cultural beliefs. Do your research before you head out to any event and have a good exit strategy to help avoid being part of anything you don’t want to be involved with.

3. Academic Control – You are on your way to adulthood and its time you took control over your future! You learn to balance schoolwork and socializing with friends. The temptation to enjoy time with your neighbours can be overwhelming, but getting poor grades in school is not worth the trade-off.

4. Helping Hands – In a residence, there are staff to assist you with study skills, provide direction to academic resources and coordinate programs to improve your academic success. In addition, there are designated study areas, mentoring and tutoring programs and quiet hours to facilitate studying which are strictly followed.

5. Supportive Environment – It’s never easy to make changes. Moving away from your family, even temporarily, is a huge change. University residence gives you a chance to test the waters outside of your home and meet a supportive network of friends. There is personal, academic, religious and social support available. Living among your peers and those experiencing the same changes as you are can be an enriching experience.

6. Convenience – It’s great to not have to travel to school each day. Most residences are directly on campus or at the very least within walking distance to classes, campus libraries and other academic resources. Most residences offer cafeterias (some meal plans), lounges, laundry facilities and community centres.

7. Personal Growth – University will let you get involved with many different programs both on campus and in the town you choose. You could learn more about your own culture and those of your other students, join clubs, work with charities, sit on committees and find out just who you are, what your values are and what makes you tick.

7 Reasons Why Your Parents Don’t Want You To!
1. Academic Success – All parents want the best for their children and many fear that living on campus is distracting and will affect your ability to get good grades. Quite the opposite is true.
In reality, living in residence places you at an academic advantage. The combination of designated study space, academic skills programming, scholastic role models, and peer study groups combine to create an environment conducive to academic acceleration.

2. Far from Home – Parent’s often fear that when you are out from under their roof that you will be nervous being far from home. But, living in residence places everything you need at your fingertips. You will save hours weekly by living on campus - time you could use to your advantage. Although you may be very homesick in the beginning, it usually doesn’t take long before you are far too busy to spend much time pining for home.

3. Too much to do – Living in residence connects you to the heart of student life. Your parents may worry that in between the events on your floor, in your residence, in other residences, or even across campus there is always something to entertain you – other than school work. Parents should be excited that you will be exposed to a wide variety of academic, cultural and social opportunities!

4. Who will you meet? – Living in residence will connect you to your NEW best friends but your parents won’t know those friends! You may have friends with different cultural or social backgrounds and this too may make your parents nervous. With thousands of students living together you will meet a wide variety of diverse people. The friendships you form and the memories you create during your time in residence will stay with you for the rest of your life. These friends will become your family away from family and you should try to create a common bond for your family and your friends alike.

5. How will you survive on your own? – You will always be somebody’s baby! Your mother and your father have to let you grow up and move on. Living in residence provides you with increased sense of responsibility. Through progressive trust-building, and a strong partnership with your family, students living in resident enjoy a high sense of personal growth.

6. Growing your interests – All of your life to this point, your family has guided your choices.
Living in residence provides a unique opportunity to develop your skills and abilities on your own. Whether this is through social opportunity or the uniqueness of communal living, those living in residences develop interpersonal, conflict resolution critical thinking, and communication skills.

7. Dollars and Cents – University is not cheap. Neither is residence. There are a lot of expenses to commuting from home to school each day as well. The money does matter –whether home or away!

Living in residence makes coming to university easier for most people. From the moment you arrive in September to the moment you leave in April, there are people and processes there to help you. Whether you’re trying to find a class, change your major, or simply cope with the change – there is always assistance readily available.

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