As the May 1 national candidate deadline approaches, many seniors are anxiously awaiting the next step in the college process because they already know where they are heading this fall. Other students are anxiously awaiting some type of divine intervention to tell them which school to choose. Either way, the next steps in the process are upon you. This is where the fun of college really begins. Yes, I am talking about your housing choices and roommate matches.
I still remember the letter I received in the mail matching me with my own college roommate. I filled out the roommate questionnaire hoping for the best. Sometime in June of 1990, I learned that my roommate was from Cincinnati, Ohio; that she wanted to major in finance; and that she was very involved at her small Catholic high school. The following week, I got a letter from Cindy, my freshman roommate. She told me about where she grew up, shared stories about her brothers and sister, mentioned why she chose the school, and asked a lot of questions. What did I like to do for fun? What was I involved with in high school? Did I like to work out? Did I like golf? Would I have access to a car? Was I bringing a word processor? (Yes, I know what you are thinking.)
As the summer rolled by, Cindy and I talked on the phone a few times and wrote letters back and forth discussing how we wanted to decorate our room, who else we knew that was attending the school, what orientation might be like, and more. Today, Cindy is my best friend, she still lives in Cincinnati, and she is the proud mother of three children, including my goddaughter. We have shared so much over the years, and yet it all traces back to that first letter she wrote to me, when she took the time to share a bit about herself. It put me at ease and really made me look forward to going off to college. I still have that letter today. I will go so far as to share with you a photo from our freshman year:
While I can’t promise that you will have the same type of “Best Friends Forever” match with your roommate, I can tell you that this is a great journey where you have the chance to go outside your comfort zone and meet and live with someone new. One of the next steps in the process is to ensure that you fill out the housing contract, whether you are living on campus next year or not. All first- and second-year students are required to live on campus unless they live with a parent or guardian a certain distance from campus and have the residence requirement waived by the Director of Residence Life. The housing contract also has a section dedicated to roommate preferences. At Loyola, we have a number of different residence halls to accommodate first-year students, and the Department of Residence Life does a great job working with incoming students. Be sure to check out the 3D views of each of the first-year residence halls, as well as a few guided video tours on YouTube. There is also a list of FAQs to review in case you are wondering about about any details in the process.
Another great advantage at Loyola offers students is the opportunity to apply to a Learning Community. Learning Communities are great ways to meet other students with similar interests. Students in Learning Communities also live in the same residence hall, making it easy to arrange study sessions or plan group activities. If you’re interested in joining a Learning Community, submit your application by May 1!