Off Campus vs. On Campus Living

This year, I have witnessed many commuters who are beginning to debate living on campus. This is a tough decision, since you are essentially asking yourself if the experience you get is worth the money you are going to pay. There are tons of things to consider when deciding where to live for college. Pros for somebody living on campus may be cons for you and vice versa. As a current resident who could have chosen to commute, I personally have had a great experience so far. Yet, I also have friends who commute that have had a great experience not living on campus.

When living on campus, you have a lot more access to campus resources. No matter what residence hall you live in, the campus buildings are no more than 5-6 minutes away. This also means that if you’re the type who likes to sleep in, living on campus is probably the best option for you. You can essentially roll out of bed to class if you wanted to. Another benefit is that you don’t have to worry about the mess of parking. Later in the day, almost all of the lots are full, so getting here early if you’re a commuter is a must. Also, your social life benefits from living on campus as well (but who needs one of those right?). You can have late nights with your friends or meet new people just by going to events or mingling with your neighbors. Living on campus for athletes is a huge bonus. Most practices have at least one 6 A.M. practice a week. This means waking up at ungodly hours of the morning to get to campus and having to find something to do until your  classes begin after you practice. Overall, living on campus will give you that feeling of independence that most college students are looking for and will give you the full campus atmosphere.

Commuting has its benefits as well. I live 30-40 minutes away and have debated commuting here because the cost of on campus living can be extremely pricey. Your tuition will go down significantly without a meal plan and room & board charges. You also do not have to deal with the expenses of buying all of the new materials you will need to live comfortably in your dorm room. If you tend to clash with people or are very picky with hygiene, commuting also might be good for you. You never know if your roommate or neighbors are going to be obnoxiously loud or unclean, and having your own space at home might make you more comfortable and more productive. Also, Benedictine provides a great commuter experience since half of its students ARE commuters. I’m referring heavily to Commuter Breakfast. YUM!

Whichever living situation you choose, its always possible to make the most out your experience. Whether you are a commuter or a resident, get involved and stay active with the school :).

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