There are more than a few things to consider when you’re moving out of home, and it’s a daunting prospect if you’re living on your own for the first time. Sure, it’s probably going to be one of the most exciting times of your life, but it’s also a big step into adulthood, and there’s definitely a few things to consider before you rush in. Here are the pros and cons of living on campus – from someone who lived there for four years:
Particularly if you live at a Village. Living off campus means your internet and utilities are controlled by different providers, so bills come at different stages throughout the year. Money is most likely going to be at the centre of all your decision making when you move out of home, so knowing your utilities are included in the rent price is great for a little peace of mind. No nasty electricity bills sneaking up on you is definitely in the pros list.
Sure, living on campus is amazing because you get to meet people from different backgrounds and learn a lot in the process. But that doesn’t mean you want to hear them skyping with their mum through the wall at 3am. Having roomies on campus means it’s a little bit more difficult to set ground rules in the house – everyone is there to have a good time and start their degrees, but if you can’t see eye to eye about what time is an appropriate time to loudly cook your 2-minute noodles, maybe campus life isn’t for you.
When I moved in to the Village I had no idea what to expect. Would I make friends? Do they have apps for friendships? What if no one likes me? You’re definitely going to ask yourself all of these questions (and maybe download some questionable apps) before you move in, but once you get there and start attending events, your social life will be sorted. I couldn’t go 48 hours without hearing about an event, or seeing free food being served nearby, or being invited to some sort of beach day outing. If you go a week in the Village without making a single friend I’ll be very impressed.
I remember in my first year when I was trying to figure out how much pasta to cook for one, I was generally cooking about 6x more than that and eating 3x what I should have been. It’s very easy to just sit back and eat instant noodles when you’re busy with uni or low on money. Sometimes living on campus means you’re confined to a bit of a bubble in the community, and don’t get me wrong, most of the time that’s an awesome thing, but in terms of cooking and putting effort into keeping yourself healthy, it’s very easy to get lazy. Keep this in mind when you start to notice more Mi Goreng than fresh food in your kitchen!
Uni is hard. There’s no getting around that fact – it’s academically challenging, you’re most likely in a new city, and you start out not knowing anyone. That can take a toll if you’re a bit nervous about settling in to your new life. One of the best things about living at the Village was the support network I had – at no point in the four years that I lived there did I feel like I didn’t have anyone to talk to. Even the cleaning lady was one of the nicest people I’d ever met. And yes, you might not feel comfortable talking to complete strangers about feeling lonely or homesick, but the RA’s at the Village have most definitely been through the same experience. The community of like-minded people on campus is definitely a point in the pros column.
Whichever way you go, moving out of home is an exciting time, and you’re bound to have fun either way. Me? I’m an on-campus girl. Some of my best memories were from living at the Village, and I met some of my best friends there. However you look at it, just make sure you have the right balance of academic support and social life – that’s all you’ll need to get through uni 😉