Pier Village

Living On-Campus Versus Living Off-Campus

Living on campus is what many college freshmen look forward to when they first come to Monmouth – but moving off campus quickly turns into what dorm residents desire. At Monmouth typically most students move off campus their junior year, but most have the urge to do so their sophomore year, if not sooner. While Monmouth offers more luxurious on campus options such as Maplewood, the Great Lawn and Garden apartments for upperclassmen. However, most students prefer the off campus options available at Pier Village and The Bluffs. Although living by the beach may sound appealing the majority of upper classmen prefer to rent a house in neighboring areas of Monmouth. So, the question is – which is the “better” option?

While many feel that moving off campus is an essential element of the college atmosphere, it has its disadvantages; while remaining on campus has perks that counteract off campus problems. When renting an off campus house, tenants are required to pay monthly rent and utility bills, which is something many college students do not expect to do until after graduation, and entering “the real world.” However, many college students feel that living in an apartment is a part of the “college experience”, and is the first step to experiencing living on your own.

However, living on campus has the potential to be an equally rewarding experience. Senior computer science student Jessica Anastasio said, “Living on campus is a must for any college student who is able to. You truly get the full campus experience when you are a resident student – living with a huge group of your peers is something you won’t experience after college.” Living on campus is the true first step of a student’s college experience – and it does not have to end after freshman year. Nicholas Messina, instructor of communication, is also a firm supporter of on-campus living. He believes, “College and on-campus living gives the opportunity to meet people based on your similar interests; it forces you to say ‘Hi’ to your neighbor and evaluate if you want to create some sort of relationship based on what your interests are.” When on campus, you have the opportunity to develop relationships with the hundreds of students that live on campus. Having these close friends down the hall is a convenience that you will not be able to experience once you live in a house off campus.

Sophomore finance student Meghan Ferguson said, “Living on campus is nice because it’s convenient and really gives you a traditional college experience with so many students living so close, but living off campus gives you some freedom that you don’t necessarily experience on campus.” Freedom is the most significant advantage of living off campus. Off campus, you have more independence than you would in a dorm. When living in a traditional dorm, you have the benefits of your bathroom being cleaned, cooked food a short walk away and your friends only a short walk from your room. Living off campus forces you to work a little harder and become more responsible. Dr. Furgason, chair of the communication department, is a firm believer in off-campus living; he feels that it helps aid in growing up. He said, “Off-campus housing requires you to shop and cook your own meals, pay your bills, deal with neighbors and commute back and forth to work (i.e. school).”

On campus apartments or university sponsored off-campus housing are two great options for students that crave both independence and convenience. With the on campus apartment options, students have the convenience of living on campus while still having their own kitchen and living space. With university sponsored off campus housing, students have the independence of off campus living while not obtaining the responsibility of paying a monthly rent or utility bills.

However, what housing really comes down to is the individual student’s preference. So, whether or not you prefer to live on-campus or off-campus, neither is the “better” choice. On campus housing is suited best for someone who values convenience and networking with their friends and peers. Off campus apartments or houses are suited best for students who value their freedom and independence. For students at Monmouth University whichever housing option they choose will only enhance their college experience.

IMAGE TAKEN from www.ownpiervillage.com