All four years of college I’ve spent living on campus. My freshman year I lived on the eleventh floor of Buddig in the Honors living community (XI for life!) Sophomore year I stepped up in the world, sharing a suite in Carrollton with three other girls. My junior and senior year, I’ve been lucky enough to live in Carrollton hall apartments, first in a double room and now in a single. Some of my best friends have been my roommates, and some of my best memories were made late at night sitting around hanging out with other residents. I’m going to miss living so close to campus, only having to wake up 15 minutes before class, and having a maintenance team ready to help me when the sink got clogged. Living in a res hall helped my experience at Loyola be the best one it could be, and I am not quite ready to leave all of it behind.
It hasn’t all been roses, though. Living with people is hard! At home I shared a room with my younger sister, but I wasn’t prepared for the constant give and take having a roommate would require. Who gets to shower first? Is it my turn to take out the trash, or yours? Someone’s got to pick up the hair out of the shower drain… not it. I’ve struggled to find ways of bringing up these awkward cleaning conversations, of how to kindly ask roommates to not have sleepovers while I’m in the room, when the appropriate time is to bring up expenses for shared groceries. I’ve had falling outs, awkward encounters, and failed attempts at reconciliation. But I’ve also had chances to create beautiful shared spaces, engage in midnight conversations about how to believe in God, and laugh with my roommates at 7:30am about how ridiculous our hair looks in the morning.
Living on campus in the res hall setting has taught me a lot about myself, how to deal with conflicts, and when to pick my battles. The Jesuit ideals of education extend beyond the classroom at Loyola- it applies even to residential life. The experience of living on campus is not one I’ll soon forget, and I am so grateful for all the things I’ve learned because of it.