As a lot of people that come to study at Essex usually come far from their home, they have to find a new place to live. Choosing that place is crucial, as it will impact your everyday life. Some people prefer to live on campus due to its advantages, and others just prefer to move out with friends they knew previously. In this blog, I will discuss what these two options have to offer.
On one hand, living on campus can be an amazing experience. You get to meet so many new people, from all around the world with different mentalities and habits, and by the end of the year, you come to realise that instead of keeping us apart, our differences bring us together. You might learn new cooking skills (unless you burn the kitchen first and decide that instant noodles are a viable option), you might also learn words in different languages (mostly swear words I promise you) or you might meet some of the best people in your life. The main advantage campus life has to offer is the fact that you are extremely close to your lectures and classes. You can leave your room five minutes before your lecture starts and still arrive on time (I know I did that way too many times!). And you’re close to pretty much everything, ranging from bars and restaurants to the library and the health centre which makes it very convenient.
On the other hand, living off campus has its own advantages. For starters, it’s cheaper and it helps you become more organised as it takes some time for you to get from your house to uni. I think the best thing about living outside of campus is the fact that you can choose who you want to live with because they usually lead to building long lasting friendships. You will learn to share everything you have and get to enjoy the peacefulness that off-campus accommodation has to offer. That means you can study in your room, or just watch a movie without the risk of hearing a party somewhere in the distance.
These two types of living shape most of our experiences at uni, especially in the first year. Usually everyone says that it’s good to spend your first year on campus accommodation because of the wide range of advantages, but afterwards, once you know your priorities better you can choose to live with your friends. Personally, I chose to stay on campus in my second year as well. The reason for that is that I love meeting new people and getting engaged in loads of things. That being said it’s already been two weeks since uni started again and I couldn’t be happier with my choice!
No matter what you choose, though, there is no right or wrong answer. It might be that you enjoy the comfort of your own house or that you like seeing new faces all the time. Even though for me it’s rather the first one, at the end of the day, all that matters is what makes you happy, so choose wisely (I know I did)!