Every year thousands of students around the world get admitted to colleges and universities to continue their education and build their career. Some students stay home with parents and choose universities in their home towns. A lot of them, however, move to other cities – either because they cannot find a good program in the local school or because they want to start living an independent life as soon as possible.
Suppose you are to leave the nest and begin a new life far from home. What options do you have? Basically, there are only two options for you – you could either live on-campus or find a place off-campus. Both options have advantages and disadvantages, and it is only up to you to decide what your priorities are and what is better for your academic life.
• An on-campus life: is it worth it? Living on-campus is very attractive. Campus is a separate world inhabited by young ambitious people where you can feel like a part of a great community. Why do students like to live on-campus? First of all, it takes only a few minutes to get to classes. Everything is very close, and there is no need in waking up too early to get ready, catch the bus, and come to classes on time. Secondly, you do not need to worry about grocery shopping and cooking every day. Food courts on-campus are quite affordable and provide a great food variety, so you will definitely find something to your liking. Finally, students living on-campus have a very active social life. When you a part of such a community, you have a lot of opportunities to meet various people, establish new contacts, and make good friends. Many of those contacts can be very useful in your future life. A big number of bars and cafes on-campus contributes to students’ social life – they always know where to spend a Friday night.
However, every medal has its reverse, and living on-campus is not an exception. To begin with, students’ social life is very active. Yes, it is an advantage, but many students turn it into disadvantage because they make excessive use of parties, friends, and alcohol, which negatively affects their academic performance. There always must be a healthy balance, but a lot of people forget that their primary goal is studying and not partying. Next, if you live in a residence, you do not have much private space. Be ready for this because other students won’t let you study in silence. One should be very concentrated to be able to study well in such an environment.
• What about living off-campus? Living off-campus has its advantages and disadvantages as well. Why is it problematic to live off-campus? This is rather straightforward: if you want to live off-campus, you need to find a place to live in. Finding a good apartment or a room in a nice house is a number one challenge. Obviously, you do not want to spend too much money on the apartment, but you want it to be clean and light and be in a good location. Besides, it can be complicated to find good roommates. You can fall in love with the place, but your roommate or your landlord might not evoke the same feelings. And to find the place is your primary goal if you prefer to live off-campus. Another thing to consider is that university campuses are usually located in remote areas and to get there takes a lot of time. Depending on where you live, it can take from 20 to 60 minutes to get to classes, so keep it in mind.
On the other hand, living off-campus lets you be more independent and stay away from a residence noise. When you have your own room, everything is much simpler because nobody bothers you and you can study and sleep well. If a person is lucky to have good roommates, they can become his/her best friends. A friendly atmosphere at home is what all students need to be fully satisfied with their school life. Moreover, living off-campus is the beginning of adult life. You need to pay rent, bills, do grocery shopping, and clean and wash everything. In other words, living off-campus helps one become more independent and responsible. This is a very important experience.
As you can see, both options have pros and cons. Living off-campus is more expensive than living on-campus, but living in a residence does not let one have personal space and be on one’s own. Everybody has priorities, and before you decide where you want to live you should think twice. If you seek for an increased social life, apply for living in a residence. If you feel this can distract you from school, choose the second option and find a nice apartment in a beautiful location. Maybe, you do not know what to expect from a new city? Then you could start living on-campus, stay there for a year, and then move out and live off-campus. You could try both and decide what is better for your personality. All students need to keep in mind is that they come to a school to study and earn a degree, not to party every night and fail exams. Partying is great, it is an essential part of students’ lifestyle, but your academic performance is much more important. Find a balance – and you will be doing great.