BY JESSICA HARTLAND
With the housing application deadline looming, it’s tough for a St. Peter’s student to avoid the flyers and emails promoting campus living. Although the college experience is defined as being away from home and focusing on your own responsibilities, does on-campus living truly have the positive perks that are touted in the public relations material?
Out of the 2,382 students enrolled at St. Peter’s College approximately 984 are residents. According to the public relations department, the percentage of commuters is 58.7.
But what really goes into making the ultimate decision on whether to become a resident or commute to school?
“When looking for schools, I automatically knew I wanted to be a resident. The main things I was looking for was a reasonable price, a fun social environment and the location, and here, I feel like I found all three,” said freshman Tiffany Hansen.
Price is always a main concern. Dormitories on East Campus start at $3,142 depending on the amount of roommates to the apartments on West Campus which range from $3,131 to $4,138 based on whether or not a living room is in your space. This does not include the mandatory meal plans which an on-campus student must buy. On average a student pays an extra $4900 dollars per semester in addition to the tuition that is now at $29,800 a year.
Living in apartments or dorms on campus allows students to experience responsibilities by managing their class schedules as well as leisure time. It is a luxury to most students to no longer have your guardians watch you. However, if you are in search of the stereotypical college experience, many choices can come with a consequence. Resident Assistants and campus officials abide by the school’s guidelines to assure the essential safety of the students. Their job serves as a way to make sure residents are not breaking any rules.
“I finally feel mature because it is a lot like living on your own,” Hansen said.
On-campus living does have its fair share of issues—including the freshman 20 and underage drinking. According to the Center of Personal Development and a survey conducted a few years prior, 89.5 percent of St. Peter’s students reported drinking only one day a week or less.
Being a resident student is not a choice for everyone as there are pros and cons to every situation. It is stressed that you can improve academically, as well as connect with fellow students that you may have never gotten the opportunity to meet if you live on campus. However, adapting to new cultures and straying away from the life you have lived at home for practically 18 years could add stress and leave a student feeling homesick.
“The hardest part about living on campus is not being able to see my family. As an athlete, constantly traveling to practice and games and not being able to see your family throws me out of routine,” said sophomore Brian Ventura.
However, it could all just be considered a life lesson that one faces.
“It’s all part of growing up,” said Hansen. “By living on campus, you allow yourself to sort of step out of your comfort zone. You meet new people and learn how to balance school with the social part of college.”