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Missing Dorm Living

Hear Katie's reflections on living in a dorm.

Hear Katie's reflections on living in a dorm.


When I first learned about Carleton, I was bummed that most students live in the dorms for all four years. Non-dorm living students have the options of: Interest Houses, Townhouses, or housing off-campus known as Northfield Option. The availability of these alternative housing options is pretty slim.

As a high school student, I wanted to live in a space other than a dorm because I thought living in a house would be more “adult”. I imagined I would cook gourmet meals, I would live with my best friends, and that I would never miss dorm living.

I was wrong.

Picture of the student townhouses.
Picture of the student townhouses.

During this summer, I’m living in one of the Northfield Option houses. In addition to me and my roommates it is also home to plenty of mice and spiders who rudely refuse to pay utilities. While I am living with one of my best friends and cooking gourmet well, at least not all instant ramen I am longing to return to dorms and dorm life.

Image of goodhue
A picture of Goodhue.

Last year I lived in one of the “worst” dorms on campus, Goodhue. Despite its bad reputation I miss living there. My current house has a great kitchen, common areas, and free laundry just like the dorms, but there are many things that just aren’t quite the same.

The first difference is the access to amenities.

While my house does have an awesome living room, the dorms have lots of study rooms (or as I like to call them, procrastination rooms), music practice rooms, and lounges (or as I like to call them, comfy procrastination rooms). I specifically miss Goodhue’s super lounge which had a ping pong table, a pool table, and a really big TV. The TV was great for watching bad rom-coms my friends and playing video games in our spare time.

I miss community most.

What I miss most about living in a dorm are the people and the community. Being surrounded by people has its downsides, such as the noise, but overall I think the community is a huge positive. There’s always something to do whether it be go to floor events (like a movie night or smoothie buffet), cook with floor mates, play board games, work on homework together, or just talk (procrastinate).

Non-dorm living does have its own community including the previously mentioned mice and spiders  but it’s not the same. I’m looking forward to hopefully going back to dorm living in the future.


Katie is a senior English Major from Chisholm, MN. She is a Resident Assistant (RA) and loves to act in student theatre productions. When she isn’t busy with those you can catch her hanging out with friends in Sayles, drawing in the Arb, reading a cheesy Young Adult novel on the Bald Spot, or spending too much time playing Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Meet the other bloggers!