Choosing College Roommates

We’ve all heard the horror stories: roommates who eat in your bed, who smoke in the room, who refuse to wear pajamas when they sleep. These monsters can be either random additions to your life or a friend you chose to live with.  Although academics are the most important focus of college life, social life also plays a significant role. The people you hang out with have a large impact on your life, your grades, and your emotional health. College roommates are arguably the most influential of these people, as they are always around you. Managing your social circle can be hard, so when picking your roommate and filling out housing applications, here are several tips you should follow:

Do not lie on your housing application! It is important that you answer your questionnaire  as candidly as possible. Remember, your roommate will be filling out theirs hoping to get a good match. If you lie, you will be messing up their situation as much as yours. If you are a smoker, admit it. If you’re messy, do the same. Lying on your application is not only rude, but it could also lead to bigger issues with your roommate. These conflicts can end up interfering with your academics, which can be devastating to your academic career.

Be willing to open yourself to change. If you go into your first day expecting a built in  best friend, you may be disappointed. Some people aren’t looking for new friends. Keep an open mind, and no matter what, be respectful. If your roommate doesn’t end up as your best pal, know that you will still have to be cooperative with them. Respect their space, keep your half of the room presentable, and do not bother their studies. If you and your roommate become besties, then that’s just icing on the cake.

Lastly, make sure that if you are picking a roommate instead of being assigned one, choose someone who you can live with. More often than not, roommates who started as best friends turn out to be horrible roommates. Friends don’t always want to cooperate and they are more likely to try to manipulate you. Choosing a roommate you aren’t familiar with gives you a fresh start with someone who doesn’t already know what sets you off.

No matter who you end up living with next year, remember to always be respectful, considerate, and cooperative. Ensuring your home life is secure will allow you to focus on your academic life, the most important part of your college experience.