For most high school students, sharing a room with someone else isn’t exactly something to look forward to. But if you live on campus, you’ll likely have a college roommate—especially as a freshman.
Before you request a single room, check out these tips for boosting your chance of college roommate success.
Contact your roommate
Once you receive your assignment, contact your future college roommate. Remember, even if your roommate is your complete opposite, they are most likely just as curious and nervous about meeting you as you are of them.
Workout the details
Schedule your move so that you are not moving in at the exact same time. Also, trade cell phone numbers and other contact information in case of any emergencies.
Gather additional information about your roommate, such as religious or health practices. If your roommate has an allergy, for example, learning how to use an EpiPen can be important in case something happens while you’re both in the room. Or if your roommate celebrates a religious holiday that requires a quiet atmosphere for prayer or meditation, it will be important to know so you can respect their needs.
Remember, your roommate doesn’t have to be your best friend
Coexisting with a stranger tends to be easier than you initially imagine. Your roommate doesn’t have to be your best friend, but you do have to be able to live together.
Try to stick to the Golden Rule: Treat your roommate how you would want to be treated. This may mean keeping your side of the room clean, not letting dirty clothes or books spill over to their side, and never taking their food, clothes, books, etc., without their permission.
Address problems as soon as they occur
As time goes on, you may discover that there are things about your roommate that bother you. Address the issue as soon as possible. When you let a small annoyance continue over time, it eventually becomes a much bigger problem. More often than not, your roommate will respect your requests. And when they confront you about something similar, you can return the favor.
Get help if you need it
It’s possible that bigger issues will surface. When it’s time to ask for help, visit your resident assistant (RA) or resident director (RD) and talk to them about the issue. They may suggest you confront your roommate first. If that doesn’t work, you may have the option of moving to a different room. Remember, nothing will change unless you make it change. If an issue is really bothering you, don’t hesitate to speak to someone of authority.
Living with a roommate can be an exciting, valuable experience. Life doesn’t end after college. Look at your roommate experiences as practice for the future.