Living on Campus: The Pros and Cons
by StudyMalaysia.com on August 21, 2014 | Top Stories
Aside from the extremely difficult choice of what degree to choose, many students have to make the decision as to whether they want to live on or off campus. Many universities are situated on a campus and run their own housing services, making it easier for students especially first-year freshies to transition into campus life (although some may provide accommodation that is a short distance outside campus grounds). Yet there are some students who opt out of university accommodation and instead, choose to live outside the campus or at home.
So which is better, really? Here we have compiled some of the pros and cons of living on campus to help make your decision just a little bit easier.
#1 No commute
Distance can be a very big factor for you if you live very far away. You may have to contend with traffic jams and oh, don't get me started on parking woes (if you drive, that is). Your inability to wake up in the morning (hands up all those who have never made it to that 8am class in time) will add to the stress of your attempt to get to class before your lecturer. Well, most of these things disappear if you live on campus! Class is literally a fifteen-minute walk away or less, and the convenience of being able to turn around and retrieve your forgotten homework is indescribable.
Let's admit it: the distractions that surround you when you are at home lower your productivity levels tremendously. Living on campus means you're surrounded mainly by other students. Picture this: groups of students studying everywhere you go, your room-mate spends late nights at the library, and conversations that revolve around assignments and exams – if this doesn't make you want to jump on the kiasu band wagon then good luck, mate! University is a self-contained environment that is designed to help you get the most work done. Staying on campus can help ensure that you get that last assignment done before embarking on that binge fest of the latest 'Game of Thrones' episodes you downloaded.
Many people agree that living on campus is all part of the grand university experience. Living on campus can teach you things about yourself that you never knew: What kind of personality do you have? Are there skills (like cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc.) that you have yet to learn? How well do you get along with others? Living on your own can teach you to rely on yourself and prepare you for the future.
Also, many students agree that you make more friends and enjoy your university life better when you live on campus because of your proximity to everyone else. The large student population on campus ensures that you are always meeting new people and won't miss out on experiences specific living on campus.
Cost is a limiting factor when deciding whether or not you can live on campus. It can be much more cost effective to live at home; sure you will have to cough out money to pay for transportation but at home (i.e. where mom and dad live) you won't have to pay for food, cleaning supplies, rent or electricity bills. Of course this changes if you don't live at home, so be aware that the cost of living off campus may be higher than on-campus. Draw up a list of expected monthly expenses to help you make easy comparisons between your options.
#2 Inflexible choices
The systems that the school has put into place may limit the lifestyle options you may want. For example, most campus universities that cater food will have a strict schedule as to when meals are served—these times may not necessarily work with your own schedule. Also, if you have special dietary requirements, food may be a problem.
Some on-campus accommodations do not cater at weekends and you may be forced to cook for yourself if going out to eat is not feasible. Juggling your school work, cooking and cleaning can be difficult, especially when you don't have parents around who will take these burdens off you. Here's a heads up: you may have to stock up on instant noodles.
We mentioned that living on-campus can be a great experience, but it can also be a dampening one if you find it hard to adjust. Homesickness is a real thing, especially if your campus is far from home. Such stress can impact your studies and productivity. However, the good news is that many universities offer counselling and help on adjusting if you need it. Also, many students experience homesickness at some point. If you reach out to your comrades, you might just overcome it in no time.
There you go! We hope we have given you something to think about. Please remember that it all boils down to what your college or university offers so make sure you do your research before you decide.