Living on campus has advantages that help students gain confidence, build relationships, and grow both independently and communally. In fact, according to Dr. Larry Hunter, director of Institutional Research at Capital University, statistics have consistently shown that students who live at Capital tend to stay in college.
Sophomore Lindi Cisco recalls back to her first year when the last thing she wanted was be away from home. She is now thankful for a little "tough love" (aka – parental encouragement) from mom that helped keep her here. "I can't imagine not living here now," she admits. "That first year was a tough adjustment, but what a difference a year makes."
Lindi has a lot to say about the advantages of living on campus. Here are her Top 6 reasons why she encourages incoming students to live here.
The dreadful group projects. Many of us don't like them because no one can ever meet at the same time and schedules always conflict. Prime time is usually early in the morning or late at night. The last thing anyone wants to do is make that extra trip to campus, especially for a group project. Having the opportunity to always be on campus makes it easier for everyone to meet the last minute before class.
Living on a college campus will quickly open the door to being independent. Parents are no longer around to watch your every move, wake you up for class, or remind you to make every deadline. When you start making your own decisions, you begin to learn from the mistakes that you have made. There is no magic spell to learn how to become independent, but living on campus brings enough "teachable" moments to help you along the way!
Half the battle of starting each day is getting out of bed. If you are like me, you end up hitting the snooze button too many extra times. Then, you don’t have time for coffee or even enough time to put on decent clothing. Finally, traffic is jammed and at that point you question whether you should even go to class today. You could have these same experiences when living on campus, with the exception of traffic. But after class, you have that time to go back to your dorm to get ready for the day, while enjoying that cup of coffee.
Living on campus provides a wide range of opportunities. Between organizations, jobs, internships, and events there are many ways to get involved on campus. It is more difficult for commuters to be involved because organizational meetings and events usually happen in the evening. It may seem ideal in the beginning, but once the meeting time comes, there will be no motivation to make an added trip to campus. More opportunities will arise to those who have the flexibility of always being on campus.
One of the most important ways of getting connected to a career is connecting with your faculty and staff on campus. You really let people know who you are when you become involved on campus. I recommend taking on campus internships to work with staff who can give you great recommendations. Visit professors during their office hours to get extra help and let them know who you are. Make yourself recognizable, even to those who have never even met you. Being on campus brings networking availability to those who are always around and familiar to the university.
Many people make lifelong friends in college. After high school, there is usually one or two contacts you have at home, but college is different. Friends become your family. You go through the best and worst times with them. The new friends you make each year will be the people that you spend the next nine months of your life with. Being on campus gives you the freedom to hang out anytime, go on random adventures, and get food through all hours of the night. Making those lasting relationships will be the part of college that is always remembered.