The Best and Worst Parts of Dorm Life

By Rachel King


Credit: Illinois Admissions



1.) Sharing a room. When you sign up for dorm life, you essentially waive your right to privacy for at least the next year. This seems fun in the beginning but will eventually become nerve-wracking. You’ll never want to share a tiny space ever again.


2.) Limited food options. In the first month of living in the dorms, you’re so overwhelmed by all the food options and buffet-style dining, but fear not. As the year progresses, you become increasingly underwhelmed and eventually can’t even look at the salad bar.


3.) Weird dining hall hours. Sure, you don’t really want to eat there anyway, but when you’re trying to save money and avoid trekking all the way to Green Street, you do what you have to do. Keep in mind, though, that it may not be open when you want to eat. Who eats before 7 p.m. on the weekends? You do!


4.) No private bathrooms. Get comfortable doing your business with at least one other person always sitting in on you. Don’t you just love how everyone will know whenever you have to go number one or two?


5.) Bathrooms not attached to your room. If you have to go to the bathroom in the middle of night, you’ll find yourself weighing your options: stay in your warm, cozy bed and hold it? Or, slip out of your covers into the cold and travel what feels like miles down the dark hallway to relieve yourself? There is no decision more difficult.


6.) Wearing shoes in the shower. You will never again take bare feet in the shower for granted.


7.) Going to the basement for laundry. As if it wasn’t hard enough to force yourself to do laundry in the first place, now you have to go all the way down to the laundry room to wash your clothes. If that doesn’t bother you, then perhaps making the trip back and forth from your room to the laundry room three times will. If that still doesn’t, then, well, it will eventually.


8.) Always seeing people you know. Rare is the moment when you walk through the hallway without seeing a familiar face. Maybe it’s the girl who tried to be your friend but totally ghosted you, or maybe it’s a guy you hooked up with once. Regardless of the case, you will see someone you know virtually everywhere you go.




1.) Socialite’s paradise. If you like talking to people, then maybe you should live in the dorms forever because you’ll always be surrounded by them! Cherish those long, all-night conversations.


2.) Readily-made food. No, it’s not the best quality, but you don’t have to lay down a finger for any meal, ever – except maybe to spread cream cheese on the bagel you snuck from the dining hall for next morning’s breakfast. Cooking? Never heard of it.


3.) Clean bathrooms. This is something you probably won’t appreciate until you move into an apartment, but trust me: there are few things more valuable than a spotless bathroom, always freshly stocked with toilet paper. It’s something frat houses should definitely take note of. 


4.) Free laundry. You have to pay for everything else you do on campus, so free laundry is essentially the holy grail. Hold on to it for as long as you can.


5.) Free cable. While you may never use it thanks to Netflix and Hulu, free stuff in college is always good. Even if you don’t use it, flaunt it to impress your parents and friends back home.


6.) Always seeing people you know. To all the lonely souls out there, look no further than dorm life. If you just want to talk, plop down in a hall lounge. You’re bound to see someone you know in the next fifteen minutes who’s willing to chat.



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