Getting to Know your Freshman Roommate

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In just a few weeks you’ll receive your college room assignment. Finally, you’ll have all the information you need to contact the roommate(s) that you’ll be sharing a tiny dorm with for 10 months.

Getting to know your roommate should be an exciting task, but it’s often awkward and scary. Like it or not, you will be stuck sharing a room with this person, so it’s best to keep an open mind and put your best foot forward.

Dismiss your First Impressions-

It’s easy to jump to conclusions. Your roommate is hesitant when she talks to you, so obviously she doesn’t like you. Or she does’nt know what Community is, so you just know that you have nothing in common. Do your best not to prejudge your roommate. You don’t know her well enough to read her body language or pick up on unspoken cues. Maybe she’s got a bad headache and is having trouble focusing, and maybe she’d love Community if she saw it.

Don’t Place Value on Intangible Details-

All you need is one glance at your roommate’s Facebook page and you know everything about her, right? No, wrong; absolutely wrong. The things you learn about someone on Facebook don’t really show you who they are. Facebook is just a list of interests and friends and photographs that were put on the site sometimes years in advance. For all you know half the stuff on your roommates page could be a joke, or perhaps there is a reason she’s only got 5 friends (maybe she’s got strict parents). Don’t allow your impression of your roommate to be formulated for you.

Talk in-person-

The best way to avoid misunderstandings or confusion is to talk to one another over the phone or in-person. Don’t just text message, Facebook chat, or email one another. Actually talk. Written text leaves a lot of room for interpretation (i.e. does the fact that she put an exclamation there mean she’s excited or ANGRY?!?). Talking with one another one-on-one will leave a lot less room for error.

Remember your roommate’s just one person-

If, for whatever reason, your first meet-up with your roommate doesn’t go well don’t let it spoil your freshman experience. Stay positive. Don’t enter your dorm room feeling angry or judgmental towards the other students. Keep your mind open and remember that you will find your niche in your dorm, even if you don’t get along with your roommate.

Image: kcolwell/Flickr

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