Dealing with the Challenges of Dorm Life

Dealing with the Challenges of Dorm Life

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The stress of living in a dorm for many freshmen is great; the transition from living in a comfortable environment, such as a guardian’s home, to living outside of it is very traumatic. It is hard because he or she has always depended on the guardian for a calm stable home life, but there is nothing stable or calm about a dorm. The combination of health problems, the feeling of living in a cell, and dealing with many different individuals makes the experience almost unbearable.

While living on-campus an individual must become accustom to few things. They must remember to always wash their hands after being in or around the bathroom because sickness and disease are rampant in a dormitory. One must also make sure to eat properly and try to lean towards processed food as much as possible. This means that when eating at one of the dining halls try to eat the pre-packaged food and not the food that is supposedly freshly made. Also, one should not take for granted that people practice good hygiene because they don’t. Communal living is very hard on the human body because it is subjected to many new and unusual germs and bacteria’s, therefore a students health is at great risk when living with hundreds of strangers in a strange place.

A student living in a dorm is subject to living in a room slightly larger than a prison cell. Like living in a prison, the bedroom, living room, kitchen, and dining room are all combined to form one living space. The air in the room is stale of years from inadequate ventilation, and musty from the out dated furniture that has had everything spilled on them from water to liquor. Poor florescent lighting in the dorm rooms contribute to irritability, drowsiness, and headaches for many, but above all they do not encourage or stimulate good work habits. There is only one light in the room and only half of the four bulbs work at a time. The feeling of seclusion due to being confined makes a person less apt to excel academically.

The uniting of many different personalities, habits, and social backgrounds can create an unsettling environment for a student. The great differences of opinion that people have towards every aspect of life create many conflicts within the building. People do not realize that if they only would be polite to one another that they could have better relationships.

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It seems that people do not realize that they have to live with one another for nine months out of twelve, and that they should just let each other go about their own business and they should stay out of other people’s problems. When living with many people from many walks of life a person does not know who to trust. Of course he or she wants to make many friends and get along with everybody but who is real and who is fake is always a great concern. As for the noise issue, there is always noise no matter what time or day it is. Students must learn to ignore everything around them and become completely amerced in any activity that they attempt.

The easiest solution to this dilemma is that the student should go out on a limb and find another living alternative, such as an apartment or a house. This would solve the health problems because he or she would be responsible for the germs and bacteria’s that they would come in contact with. They would be able to cook their own food so that their risk of food poisoning would be significantly reduced as well. By living in a greater space, the feeling of living in a cell would vanish. There would be more than one room to live in and therefore he or she would not feel enclosed. The air circulation would be under their control because there would be more than one window, and the lighting would be better due to the fact that the individual would control how many lights there were and what kind they were. Last but not least, the problem with living with strangers would be abolished completely. A student living off-campus can choose whom they live with and control what is going on in the residence. The issue of trust might be still be there but by then they would know the people they are living with a little better and the individual will have to trust their instincts. This is the most logical solution to the problem because it still lets the student interact with new people in class, but it is less stressful than living in a dorm with the many aggravations that accompany it.

The everyday stresses that a student has should not be added to by the stress of their living environment. Attending college is tiresome enough without having to worry about having the opportunity to study because he or she does not know when it will be quiet. Or whether or not they are going to get sick because their neighbor down the hall is, and they just went to the restroom after them. A student should be able to be productive and not fear a migraine or drowsiness due to improper lighting. Change is traumatic enough without having to worry about all of these things. While living in the dormitory is effective in the transition between home and college, it puts great strain on the mind, body, and academic success of a student.
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