The Pros And Cons Of On-Campus Dorming Vs. Off-Campus Apartments

3 Ways Off-Campus Living Is Better Than Opting For A Tiny Dorm Room

Living off-campus can be a lot of fun, especially if you live with friends.


When most people think of college, they picture dorm rooms, lecture halls and fraternity houses. Dorms have become synonymous with college — whether you're going out of state or staying local. But off-campus living may be a better option than sharing a tiny dorm room with a complete stranger.

Here are three reasons why.

You get space to breathe.

Off-campus apartments typically have more space than the average dorm. Unless you're sharing a room to save on rent costs, you'll have your own bedroom. Apartments also have an actual living room, larger kitchens and more storage space. You may even have your own bathroom, but if you don't, you'll only have to share one with your roommates. With dorm living, you're typically sharing showers and toilets with an entire floor of people.

Even if you do decide to share a room with someone, the apartment will still have more space than a dorm. Most dorm rooms are 130 square feet or smaller. And you won't have to worry about people constantly going in and out of your room.

You’ll save some money.

Living on-campus can be pricey. Tuition is high enough at most schools. Room and board can really add to the overall cost of college.

Renting an apartment off-campus may actually be cheaper than paying for a dorm. This isn't true for every city and college, so make sure that you compare prices before making your decision.

Look around nearby neighborhoods to see if any offer comparable or cheaper rent options than your on-campus dorm. Make sure that you can easily commute to classes, and keep in mind that roommates will lower rent costs significantly. You also won't have to worry about maintenance or repair costs, so if a pipe bursts in the middle of the night, it's the responsibility of your landlord to hire a plumber.

Make sure that you do all of your research before deciding to rent off-campus. The cost of an off-campus apartment may not necessarily be cheaper, but the other benefits (more privacy, freedom, etc.) may outweigh the costs. Keep in mind that with an apartment, you'll still need to pay for utilities, food and laundry. With dorm living, these costs are usually included in your room-and-board fees.

You make your own rules (mostly). 

Dorms have rules, and if you live there, you have to abide by them. There may be restrictions on how late you can have visitors. You may not be able to have people of the opposite sex visit your room. There may be periodic inspections of rooms, and you'll probably have to attend meetings with your RA regularly.

When you rent an apartment, there will still be some rules that you'll need to follow — like not having pets or being too noisy. But generally, you can have people over whenever you want. You won't have to attend monthly meetings, and your landlord can't just show up at your door for a surprise inspection.

Living off-campus can be a lot of fun, especially if you live with friends. You get to decorate your space and entertain friends. And you won't have to live with all of the restrictions that come with dorm living.

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9 Reasons Crocs Are The Only Shoes You Need

Crocs have holes so your swag can breathe.

Do you have fond childhood objects that make you nostalgic just thinking about your favorite Barbie or sequenced purse? Well for me, its my navy Crocs. Those shoes put me through elementary school. I eventually wore them out so much that I had to say goodbye. I tried Airwalks and sandals, but nothing compared. Then on my senior trip in New York City, a four story Crocs store gleamed at me from across the street and I bought another pair of Navy Blue Crocs. The rest is history. I wear them every morning to the lake for practice and then throughout the day to help air out my soaking feet. I love my Crocs so much, that I was in shock when it became apparent to me that people don't feel the same. Here are nine reasons why you should just throw out all of your other shoes and settle on Crocs.

1. They are waterproof.

These bad boys can take on the wettest of water. Nobody is sure what they are made of, though. The debate is still out there on foam vs. rubber. You can wear these bad boys any place water may or may not be: to the lake for practice or to the club where all the thirsty boys are. But honestly who cares because they're buoyant and water proof. Raise the roof.

2. Your most reliable support system

There is a reason nurses and swimming instructors alike swear by Crocs. Comfort. Croc's clogs will make you feel like your are walking on a cloud of Laffy Taffy. They are wide enough that your toes are not squished, and the rubbery material forms perfectly around your foot. Added bonus: The holes let in a nice breeze while riding around on your Razor Scooter.

3. Insane durability

Have you ever been so angry you could throw a Croc 'cause same? Have you ever had a Croc bitten while wrestling a great white shark? Me too. Have you ever had your entire foot rolled like a fruit roll up but had your Crocs still intact? Also me. All I know is that Seal Team 6 may or may not have worn these shoes to find and kill Osama Bin Laden. Just sayin'.

4. Bling, bling, bling

Jibbitz, am I right?! These are basically they're own money in the industry of comfortable footwear. From Spongebob to Christmas to your favorite fossil, Jibbitz has it all. There's nothing more swag-tastic than pimped out crocs. Lady. Killer.

5. So many options

From the classic clog to fashionable sneakers, Crocs offer so many options that are just too good to pass up on. They have fur lined boots, wedges, sandals, loafers, Maryjane's, glow in the dark, Minion themed, and best of all, CAMO! Where did your feet go?!

6. Affordable

Crocs: $30

Feeling like a boss: Priceless

7. Two words: Adventure Straps

Because you know that when you move the strap from casual mode chillin' in the front to behind the heal, it's like using a shell on Mario Cart.

8. Crocs cares

Okay, but for real, Crocs is a great company because they have donated over 3 million pairs of crocs to people in need around the world. Move over Toms, the Croc is in the house.

9. Stylish AF

The boys will be coming for you like Steve Irwin.

Who cares what the haters say, right? Wear with pride, and go forth in style.

Cover Image Credit: Chicago Tribune

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From One Nerd To Another

My contemplation of the complexities between different forms of art.


Aside from reading Guy Harrison's guide to eliminating scientific ignorance called, "At Least Know This: Essential Science to Enhance Your Life" and, "The Breakthrough: Immunotherapy and the Race to Cure Cancer" by Charles Graeber, an informative and emotional historical account explaining the potential use of our own immune systems to cure cancer, I read articles and worked on my own writing in order to keep learning while enjoying my winter break back in December. I also took a trip to the Guggenheim Museum.

I wish I was artistic. Generally, I walk through museums in awe of what artists can do. The colors and dainty details simultaneously inspire me and remind me of what little talent I posses holding a paintbrush. Walking through the Guggenheim was no exception. Most of the pieces are done by Hilma af Klint, a 20th-century Swedish artist expressing her beliefs and curiosity about the universe through her abstract painting. I was mostly at the exhibit to appease my mom (a K - 8th-grade art teacher), but as we continued to look at each piece and read their descriptions, I slowly began to appreciate them and their underlying meanings.

I like writing that integrates symbols, double meanings, and metaphors into its message because I think that the best works of art are the ones that have to be sought after. If the writer simply tells you exactly what they were thinking and how their words should be interpreted, there's no room for imagination. An unpopular opinion in high school was that reading "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne was fun. Well, I thought it was. At the beginning of the book, there's a scene where Hawthorne describes a wild rosebush that sits just outside of the community prison. As you read, you are free to decide whether it's an image of morality, the last taste of freedom and natural beauty for criminals walking toward their doom, or a symbol of the relationship between the Puritans with their prison-like expectations and Hester, the main character, who blossoms into herself throughout the novel. Whichever one you think it is doesn't matter, the point is that the rosebush can symbolize whatever you want it to. It's the same with paintings - they can be interpreted however you want them to be.

As we walked through the building, its spiral design leading us further and further upwards, we were able to catch glimpses of af Klint's life through the strokes of her brush. My favorite of her collections was one titled, "Evolution." As a science nerd myself, the idea that the story of our existence was being incorporated into art intrigued me. One piece represented the eras of geological time through her use of spirals and snails colored abstractly. She clued you into the story she was telling by using different colors and tones to represent different periods. It felt like reading "The Scarlet Letter" and my biology textbook at the same time. Maybe that sounds like the worst thing ever, but to me it was heaven. Art isn't just art and science isn't just science. Aspects of different studies coexist and join together to form something amazing that will speak to even the most untalented patron walking through the museum halls.

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