Living on-campus at Bloomsburg University can be fun, but there are also some limitations to living there. There are certain aspects of living on-campus that are unique. It is important that you are aware of the reasons for and against living on-campus so that you can decide whether or not it is the right fit for you. Below I will describe the top three benefits and drawbacks to living on-campus.
Close proximity to class and campus services
Living on-campus allows you to remain close to your classes and other campus services, such as dining, recreational facilities, medical offices and other such things. The on-campus residential halls for lower campus are only short walks away from these buildings, allowing for ease of access to them whenever you need them. This cuts down on the time it takes for you to get to class, reducing the likelihood that you will be late and allowing you a bit of time to catch up on more sleep before heading off to morning classes. You will be saving gas money, stress, and you will be able to reach any campus services relatively quickly. It is important to note that the upper campus apartments are farther away from these campus services and classes, but there is a bus route that runs from upper to lower campus that can take upper campus students down to the lecture buildings in about five to ten minutes time. This close proximity to campus buildings may make it desirable for students to live on-campus.
Security and CA assistance
Living on-campus comes with the assurance that you will be kept safe by the University police who patrol the campus regularly. Whenever you are on-campus and you feel unsafe for any reason you have the ability to call the campus police either from your phone or by pressing the emergency button on any one of the many police boxes scattered about the campus. The campus police are very fast in their response times and are able to help you with any issues and escort you to your destination. Many students find this security very comforting and is a good benefit to living on-campus.
Community assistants, or CA’s, are students appointed by the University who live on each floor of every on-campus residential building to assist student residents with any issues they have. Students may go to them for any residential issues ranging from defective appliances in their rooms, student conflicts, noise complaints, questions about on-campus living, and more. They are the people who make sure living on-campus is safe and comfortable for students. They also hold fun activities for their student residents including pizza parties, arts and crafts, movies and more! Most importantly, they live right down the hall from you, making it very easy to reach them at any time.
Custodial staff on Campus
Each on-campus residential building has custodial workers that clean the halls and the bathrooms of the buildings, removing the need for students to clean them and purchase toilet paper and paper towels for the bathrooms. This does not, of course, mean that students are allowed to live like slobs and expect the custodial staff to clean everything up after them; students are still expected to clean their own rooms and not dirty up the buildings. This does however ensure that students’ buildings are kept clean. Additionally, multiple trash cans are placed around the halls of lower-campus residential buildings that the custodial staff change daily, allowing students to empty their trash regularly without having to haul it to a dumpster. In the case of the upper-campus apartments, the cleanliness of the apartments themselves are the responsibility of the students, but the halls and laundry rooms are kept clean by the custodial staff. These services lessen the amount of time needed to clean and allow students more time to study and relax.
The Cost of living on Campus
While the services provided for living on-campus are nice, the amount of money needed to pay to live there can be expensive. Depending on which on-campus building you are living in, the costs of living there range from about $3,000 to roughly $4,300 per semester. This is not including the price of a meal plan, which range from $945 to about $2,000 per semester. The costs of living on-campus may be too expensive for some people, especially since the dorm rooms in the lower campus residential buildings are not that large and there is the possibility of being tripled. These costs are associated with the student living quarters, the custodial staff, appliances, whether or not you want to live with a roommate, and whether or not you want air conditioning in your room. In some circumstances off-campus housing can be cheaper, so it is important to compare the prices of on-campus and off-campus living when making your decision on where to live.
Privacy and noise
Many of the residential buildings on the lower campus of Bloomsburg University are communal style, meaning that students in a hall share a bathroom and showers. This may not appeal to students who want more privacy. Additionally, the halls of residential buildings do tend to get very noisy, especially later in the day and on the weekends. This could be very disruptive to students who want peace and quiet while they study and sleep. Unfortunately, with my experience living on-campus, the walls between rooms do not do a really good job of preventing sound from traveling from room to room, and this was a major irritant whenever I wanted to study in my room or sleep and my neighbor was being noisy. This is especially true for people living in the Elwell and Columbia residential halls, as they are able to house many more students than the other halls. It should be noted, however, that there are lounges on almost every hall of every residential building that students can go to study in, but they can easily become full very fast. If you are considering living in the on-campus apartments on upper campus the noisiness is lower because the apartments are better separated from each other. Students who want more privacy and quiet should consider this when deciding where to live.
Some limitations on freedom and space
Living on-campus comes with a few limitations as well. There are mandatory quiet hours during the weekdays after 9 p.m., and if you are being excessively loud for any reason, like having friends over or playing music, a CA may be called on you to quiet down. This could be a good thing for people who want the silence, but, as mentioned above, the room walls are pretty thin and even small noises could reach neighbors. For students who are 21 and older, Bloomsburg University is a dry campus, and as such alcohol is not permitted in the residence buildings. Cigarette smoking and vaping is also not allowed in the residential halls. Additionally, during some times of the year like Block Party Weekend in the Spring, the number of guests you can have staying in your dorm is limited, usually to only one person. It should also be noted that the dorm rooms on lower campus are relatively small, and it can become quite crowded, especially if you have two other roommates living with you. Depending on your lifestyle you may find these rules and the size of the living area to be annoying, and as such it is something to consider.
Living on-campus comes with the benefits of being close to campus services, having the security of campus police, having CAs down the hall to help you, and having custodial staff to maintain your hallways and bathrooms. However, it comes with some rules, some noise issues, and a high price. Take these factors into account when deciding on whether or not to live on-campus.