Convenient, nearby, on-campus living?

We all come to college ready for a taste of independence. And we’re granted just that upon arrival and our first day at Carnegie Mellon, even if that independence comes with close living quarters with a roommate — or roommates — that we’ve never met before, and being subjected to the same selection of food day in and day out with the mandatory meal plan. So it’s no wonder that after a year of this monotony, many students are ready to move off campus to gain further independence after living in the first-year dorms. I’m here to tell you, however, that staying on campus isn’t nearly as bad as some say.

After about the first month of classes, the novelty of waking up every day at 8 a.m. quickly wears off, especially with the often-dreary Pittsburgh weather. Knowing this, it is much easier to force yourself to get up for class when you only have a five-minute walk ahead of you to class rather than a 25-minute one. Living on campus allows you the benefit of a few extra pushes of the snooze button, something that all students appreciate. And when you’re finally finished cramming for that big exam and you’re leaving the library at 2 a.m., it’s certainly comforting to know that your bed is mere minutes away and that you don’t have to walk to your apartment quickly while holding your valuables close and keeping an eye out for approaching shadows.

Living on campus also gives you a place to stop back during the day when you have a few hours between classes — you don’t have to be a permanent fixture in the napping pod in the library or the black chairs in the UC when you need a quick nap. Likewise, you don’t have to carry every single book and notebook with you for your entire day’s schedule.

While some may worry about not being able to fully participate in the social life that off-campus living can offer, many would beg to differ. You can certainly still attend all the off-campus parties you want (though you may have a bit of a walk there and back), but you don’t have to worry about being the one to have to clean up the apartment the next day. A win-win situation, in some students’ opinions.

Finally, it gives you a chance to always be near to anything that’s happening on campus, whether it’s a last-minute snowball fight or a spur-of-the-moment decision by your floor to go to half-price in Oakland. While you may not have full independence like your peers dwelling off campus, there’s time for that after college, when real life begins. Until then, take advantage of the snooze button and weekly bathroom cleaning that comes with living on campus.