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Dorms: the most important part of college life!! Just kidding.

But still, dorm life matters! Here’s more insight into dorms and tips about res life at Carleton.

Side-note: freshman get their assigned rooms and roommates through a housing survey that will go out in mid-June. This survey has the typical questions like: ‘when do you like to get up/go to bed?’/’how messy/clean do you like to be?’ It also has a section where you can write in specific requests, like that you would like to live on a same gender floor, need accommodations, or need to live with someone who is accepting of the LGBTQ community.

On to specific Dorms:


This dorm mostly houses first year students, and is one of the places you will likely end up your freshman year! Though it’s the furthest from main campus (which means about five minutes at Carleton) it has a lounge that’s envied by every Carl, and is described as a place to meet a lot of friends and hang out. It’s also very close to the arb and Rec Center, so it’s easy to get out and explore or work out.


Musser is on the opposite side of campus from Goodhue—in all, it’s about a ten minute (but probably less) walk from one to the other. It’s super close to Northfield, the interest houses that adjoin campus, and the Complex: Burton, Severance, and Davis (this means food is close and easy to get!). It’s another common dorm for first-years.


Myers Hall is directly across from my home, Nourse. It faces the mini bald spot and is also very close to the LDC (again, making meals super convenient!). Its fourth floor has windows that take up most of the wall, which are envied by everyone. It also has a piano in the first floor lounge, which I can’t wait to go try.


My home! A beautiful space on campus that isn’t super well known (a hidden gem, if you will). Nourse has a quiet atmosphere, and also houses specific floors: ie. all gender floors, a substance free floor, and a quiet floor. It’s one of the oldest buildings on campus, but fear not—its features don’t suffer (we haven’t any issues with cleanliness, temperature, plumbing, etc. during our year here). Nourse is also home to the Little Nourse Theater, which is so cool! In normal years, it has entertainment going on pretty frequently.


Watson is the tallest dorm building on campus! It has a nice location: it’s slightly secluded, and is close to the arb, Japanese Garden, Cowling Gymnasium, and main campus. It has spacious doubles, especially in its corner rooms which have lots of natural light and even more common space. It’s characterized as super friendly, and a great place to meet people and find a shared community.

Burton, Severance, and Davis

These dorms make up The Complex! In addition to each other, they are attached to Sayles; living here is a great way to have access to several facilities without going outside! Severance (affectionately called Sevy) and Davis are upperclassmen dorms, but Burton houses everyone, and there’s a chance your freshman year could be spent here.

PS: The Complex can be a louder place to live; if you have strong feelings about this, indicate that on the Freshman Housing survey!


Cassat Hall is one of the newest dorms, which means rooms have heated floors and ceiling fans (heck yes!!). It’s located right next to the mini-bald spot (along with James, Nourse, Myers, and the LDC). Casset houses all years, although as a freshman, it’s more difficult to end up here (but it’s possible!).


James is one of the most desirable halls on campus: it has very spacious rooms (including lots of quads and quints with private bathrooms) and, like Cassat, it’s pretty new. It’s an upperclassman dorm, though, so don’t get your hopes up about living here yet!


In my opinion, Evans has one of the best views: it sits on the East edge of campus, and overlooks Bell Field, which includes the tennis courts, lots of open space where students toss around soccer and volleyballs, and hills where Northfield kids and Carls sled in the winter. It also has a view of the arb and pathways into the its wooded areas, and is close to Cowling Gymnasium. It has a music space in its basement called “The Cave,” and is generally seen as a friendly and outdoorsy dorm by Carls.

Let me know about any other questions you may have about dorm life!

Erin grew up catching salamanders, recklessly climbing trees, and running around barefoot in the Appalachian Mountains in a small town in North Carolina. This is her first year at Carleton, and she’s looking forward to meeting new people, exploring campus (especially the arb!), and experiencing her first Minnesota winter. She is currently interested in studying psychology and gender, women’s, and sexuality studiesMeet the other bloggers!