College Dorm Life: Living Alone vs. Having A Roommate

During your freshman year of college, your dorm situation can greatly affect your experience and happiness, so it is important that you choose the living environment that is best for you and your needs.

Many colleges and universities offer students the option of selecting to live with a  roommate or to live alone in a single room. While you may not be able to choose your roommate, you can often choose whether you even want to have one.

There are many advantages and disadvantages to both living arrangements. Most students automatically expect that they will have to live with a roommate their freshman year, but this isn’t true. Making a pros and cons list of each may help you decide what situation is right for you.

Different living styles as well as personalities help determine if living in a single or with a roommate is best.

Let’s examine the different compatibilities of each living combination.

You may want a roommate if: You like meeting new people, are outgoing and accepting of new ideas and cultures, or just want to experience living with another person. Having a roommate is something most people have never experienced until they are in college, but it can be life changing and a great learning opportunity.

You may want a roommate if you want to learn or improve your abilities to compromise and coexist with another person in such close quarters. Having a roommate can create good new habits for you, improve your communication skills, and teach you alternative ways of doing things. Living with a roommate can be one of the most rewarding parts of the college experience. You could meet your best friend, or learn about the type of people you get along with and the type you don’t.

You may want a single room if: You are very independent, quiet, or somewhat claustrophobic. Having a roommate is not for everyone, despite the common college stereotype. People that enjoy alone time, study often, have abnormal sleeping habits or just simply want more space might enjoy living in the dorms alone. If you’re worried about meeting people, you will still have your hall mates and opportunities to meet people in classes and other social situations. Not having a roommate doesn’t necessarily mean you missed out on meeting your new best friend.

Single rooms are good for those with hectic lifestyles as well. If your studies keep you up until wee hours of the night, or your sports team requires you store your large amount of equipment in your room, you may want a single to avoid annoying your roommate. Finally, single rooms can be good for those with significant others. With a roommate you may have to worry about constantly having your boyfriend or girlfriend over to avoid bombarding them, but with a single, the room is all yours.

As you can see, living with a roommate requires certain personality traits and lifestyles, as does living in a single. Weigh the options of both if the college you are attending gives you the choice, because a decision like this can make or break your freshman year experience.

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Madeline Fetchiet

Madeline Fetchiet

Madeline Fetchiet is a sophomore at Michigan State University, studying journalism and philosophy of law. Aside from reporting, Madeline enjoys tae kwon do, reading, writing, researching and traveling, and can be considered a music enthusiast. Madeline currently works as an intern for thecollegehelper.com, and is a banquet server at Travis Pointe Country Club in Ann Arbor, MI. Perfecting the storytelling side of reporting is something she looks forward to in her future career as a journalist.
Madeline Fetchiet

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