by Steven Vukaj, Content Manager
When applying to colleges, it is common for students to want to go to schools where they will live in an on-campus dorm rather than commute from home. Finally, after living with your parents for 18 years, you get some independence and can live on your own! However, you shouldn’t just limit yourself to schools that are a great distance away. Universities that are close to home may just be the perfect place for you!
I know what you’re thinking: “if I go to a college that’s close to home and don’t live on campus, I’m going to miss out on all the fun stuff.” As a commuter student myself, I can assure you, you will have just as much fun and enjoy yourself as you would living on-campus even if you live at home! Here are some reasons why I love being a commuter and why you should consider it as well!
#1: You Already Know The Area
Wherever you go for college, all the new students will want to explore the city or town around them and find out the best thing around them. Luckily, you probably already know what’s around! I go to Fordham University, which is right in the heart of The Bronx, a borough of New York City. Whenever I’m in class and overhear classmates talking about what they should see and how to get there, it’s always fun to give them tips and advice on what to do! You can tell people about cool places that aren’t overwhelmed with tourists, and who knows, maybe you’ll make a new friend for yourself from another part of the country or world!
#2: A Nice Home Cooked Meal
College students, more often than not, complain about the food situation on their campuses. The food is probably not up-to-par with the standards you may have with the food you were used to back home. For a meal plan that probably added a lot of money to your tuition payment, you would expect something cooked perfectly, right? As a commuter, you’re lucky to have the opportunity to enjoy your favorite home-cooked meal whenever you please.
Another thing that’s awesome about being a commuter in relation to the food situation is that you’re also likely to know what good restaurants are around your campus. Much of my childhood revolved around going to Arthur Avenue on weekends to the fresh, local markets. For those who don’t know, Arthur Avenue is basically the Little Italy of the Bronx, right next to Fordham University. Many students spend their time there, enjoying all the great food that is offered there. Luckily, I already knew all the best spots before attending my first semester.
#3: Your Own Bedroom and Bathroom
Another thing college students that dorm might not be used to is having to share a bedroom and use a communal bathroom. Your roommate could potentially be someone you don’t get along with, and you’ll have to be stuck with them for a whole year until you get a new one. When you’re a commuter, you don’t have to worry about all that! Why stress about packing clothes and making a whole new room for yourself, when you already have your room at home set out for you? Plus, you don’t need to worry about the cleanliness of the communal bathroom in dorm rooms.
#4: You Can Still Be Involved
While being a commuter has its advantages, there are some downsides to it as well. The main one, in my opinion, is meeting new people. Many people become friends through close proximity with one another in the dorm halls, not through classes like you would in high school. So, how can you be a social person on-campus? Clubs and activities! There are plenty of things to choose from, and if you’re a commuter, there’s probably a commuter association! These groups allow you to know more about what’s going on on campus and will enable you to meet new people!