By Kelli Bailey
BANGOR, Maine – During your years at Husson University, you will take away many things with you. The crazy journey will include over night study sessions, moments of self-doubt and personal achievement. One of the many people you get to share this experience with is your roommate.
It is said that one of the biggest takeaways from campus living, is learning to cohabitate with another person. In college, especially at Husson, you are confined to a small room, having to share space with someone that you just met. The butterflies are swarming, palms are sweating, and you’re not sure whether you should just put all your strange quirks out there, or let the person figure them out for themselves. Don’t fret, you’re probably not alone though. Chances are, that other person is feeling the exact same way.
The transition from living at home, to now almost fully on your own, is highly underrated. Having a roommate is almost like having a built in friend. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way, but when it does work, it can be a great thing. Someone that you can get lost on campus with, share a late night snack sessions, and not feel guilty about. A friend, a study buddy, and a support system.
Kaylond Mauzerolle, a transfer student to University of Maine at Farmington (UMF), relived the roommate experience, a couple times. Starting out her college journey as a Journalism major at New England School of Communications (NESCom), she has a slightly different experience, because not only did she have to introduce herself to a new roommate, but also a whole new campus.
Starting with her first experience at NESCom, “I was more than nervous about having a roommate. It can lead to two outcomes in my mind: you either have a built-in buddy and you become best buds, or you are just living with another individual in the same room. I have had both of these experiences throughout my college experience,”said Mauzerolle.
Mauzerolle had preparation steps before moving in with a complete stranger.
“Before arriving to school at NESCom I tried to connect with my roommate ahead of time. I found the person on Facebook and introduced myself. I thought it would be a good idea to get to know the person a little bit before moving in,” she said. “This was not the best situation for me because my first roommate I was placed with was not the kindest soul and made me feel out of place and I had not even moved in yet.So I was then assigned a new room and was very cautious. I was looking for a more welcoming experience. After dealing with my first roommate I was extremely nervous to move in and have a roommate in general.”
Making the switch from having your own space to sharing it with another human can be challenging.
“The transition to a small environment is interesting to say the least. I have always had my own room so I was used to spreading out and taking up a lot of space. When moving into a room with someone who has just as much stuff as you do and maybe more, I was shocked,” said Mauzerolle.” Our room had a lot of things in it. I learned to condense the amount of things I had, and even find nifty ways to store all of my things. It was a change to say the least. I became more conscious of where I placed my things.”
After leaving Husson, and transferring to UMF, not only did she leave behind all her new friends she made, but also changed her major entirely.
“I honestly think I was more nervous after leaving Husson. I left all my friends behind to pursue a different school and major, and then had to make new friends. I knew that going to NESCom and having a roommate that I clicked with was pure luck. We got lucky. Though I was nervous I was not expecting an instant buddy this time. When I found out that my roommate was an exchange student I was unsure about how the year would go. There was a language barrier that I had to face, different interests, and different sleep schedules. I got stuck living with someone that I really didn’t talk to. It was very strange, I felt very out of place. After the first semester I was lucky enough to land an Resident Assistant position at UMF, so I was able to then move into my own room the following semester,” said Mauzerolle.
“If I had to do it over again? Overall, I have no major complaints. The one thing I wish I would have done better would be communicating my thoughts”.
Ryan Hood, 5th year Physical Therapy student spoke with The Spectator, on her perspective of living with a roommate. She lived on campus for four semesters, with the same roommate, who is also a Physical Therapy major.
“Having the same major meant we could use each other for study sources, we had the same schedule, and the same interests, we got along great,” she stated.
Hood said that her, and her old roommate do still talk frequently, and continue to be great friends. Not only does Ryan have the experience of living on campus with a roommate, but also the experience of living off campus with multiple roommates. Which sometimes can be a whole different ball game.
“Living off campus with roommates, you get more privacy with separate bedrooms, but it’s easier to keep a single room clean, than an apartment” said Hood.
This is true, when you only have a single room to keep clean, and two people to clean it, there really isn’t a whole lot of room for excuses as to why it’s still messy. Having roommates off of campus is a great way to slowly transition into adulthood. Yes, bills are inevitable, but sharing them with someone, or multiple someones can make the burden a little easier to bare.
Alyssa Vinke, 5th year Hospitality major sat down with The Spectator to talk about her experience on not having a roommate at all, she’s never even stayed one night on a college campus. Getting her undergrad at Eastern Maine Community College, and later transferring to finish her masters at Husson University, she had many chances to live on campus if she chose to do so. But the prices of living on campus are expensive.
“I decided not to live on campus because my commute was short enough and the price didn’t make it worth it,” said Vinke. “Sometimes, yes I think I missed out on the roommate experience in the sense that where I wasn’t on campus, I didn’t get that college experience”.
That is a fear that a lot of people have is , ”If I don’t live on campus, will I not get that typical college experience”?
Vinke would say otherwise though, “I would say I lucked out, just because when I wanted to move, I didn’t want it to be with a random person”. Other things Alyssa had about living on campus, “cons about campus living can also be, parking or the lack of, also the rules they have for living on campus”. All reason why she chose differently than the traditional student.
The inside perspective from three different college/ roommate experiences. Whether you decide to live on campus all four years, transfer, move in with someone off of campus, or just not have the experience at all, now you have some perspective on it.