So You Think You Can Live With Us?

My friends and I are looking for a sixth roommate for a suite in P-Row!

We are a caring and relaxed group of people! Come live with us.

It’s that time of the year; the time when housing applications are up, and everyone is stressing out about where they’re going to live and with whom. It was like this before I had even stepped foot on the Emerson campus, and now that I’m going to be a sophomore next year, I’m experiencing a round of housing déjà vu as my peers rush to finish their housing applications.

I thought it was going to be a lot easier this time around. I figured that everyone would be settled in their friend groups, and that the choice to live together would be a no-brainer. Finding roommates before freshman year was awkward because you didn’t know anyone, and you were forced to either go random or chat with some complete strangers online and hope they weren’t  complete psychos. However, I feel like this time around come with even more complications.

There have been tons of messages in the various Emerson Facebook groups with people advertising about the need for other roommates. It may be easier in the sense that sophomores usually have people in mind that they want to live with, but it is harder in the sense that there may not be enough people in their friend group to fill up a certain suite. Then, trying to find individuals to fill rooms while people switch in and out to go abroad is a whole different problem entirely.

What shocked me is how willing people were to live with almost perfect strangers. For some reason, Emersonians would much rather live with someone they kind of know, or someone they find off of a Facebook group than go random. It was the same way before freshman year. I even went through a phase where I was completely against going random, and was frantically trying to find anyone to live with.

Why are students so against going random? It’s not even limited to Emersonians. I am no stranger to the chaos that ensued as all of my friends went through their own roommate processes over the summer. The way I look at it is you’re just as likely to have bad experiences with random roommates as you are with roommates you pick, or even with best friends. You can end up getting along really well with a random roommate. I’ve seen many cases where people went with the random option and were fine with their roommates.

In fact, I was one of these cases. I went random, and my roommate and I are perfectly fine living together. I’ve also seen cases where people picked their roommates and didn’t get along with them. The way I saw it when I decided to go random during the summer before freshman year was that no matter which method I chose, there was probably an equal chance that I wouldn’t get along with my roommate. I could leave it up to chance and blame it on the universe having some personal vendetta against me, or I could pick my roommate and have the blame fall into my hands.

People are so afraid of going random that there’s even an event to help people find roommates before the housing deadline is up. Residence Hall Association hosted an event on March 3rd and 4th and is hosting it again after break (I might hyperlink the Facebook page). The event is meant to help individuals find roommate matches. The Facebook page for the event even exclaims, “Are you freaking out because you have no idea who you’re gonna live with next year? Are you freaking out because you have the perfect mix of suitemates, but you need just one more to complete the suite? STOP FREAKING OUT! RHA to the rescue! Come to one of our four Sweet Suite Roommate Matching events to find your perfect match. You’ll fill out a survey and participate in fun group activities so you can find your perfect match!”

It shocked me that students are so against going random that they would go as far as going to an event like this. It could be very helpful, but to me, it seems a lot like speed dating for roommates. I think that a lot of good can come from finding a roommate through Facebook or an event like this one, but I also think random isn’t something that should get as bad of a connotation as it does. With so much stress in students’ lives already, maybe going random will help there be one less thing to worry about.

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