Before every school year, the roommate and living situation problem surfaces. Where do you live and with whom? This goes for freshmen who don’t know too many people at the school, transfers just getting acquainted to the adjustment, and upperclassmen possibly looking for a change of scenery. Whatever arrangement you may choose, it is always best to at least explore different options and test new waters.
The pros of opting for a random roommate over selecting one yourself heavily outweigh the cons. With this option, you are able to expose yourself to new people who come from new areas and can provide new perspectives. Political affiliation, ethnic background and general likes and dislikes are a deep well to be explored, so you owe it to yourself to accompany a fresh start with some new people. Who knows? You might end up with a go-to dining hall companion or even the beginning of a lifelong friendship. You won’t know unless you venture out into the unknown and try.
College is all about stepping outside your comfort zone. It is important to be able hold a conversation with various people and develop interpersonal and communication skills. The best way to hone these skills is to put yourself in new situations daily. The most direct way of achieving dynamic character change is by interacting with different types of people.
Therefore, getting to know somebody from scratch allows you to build up those skills. Something as simple as coordinating sleep schedules or making food runs to the grocery store can make an impact on potential friendships. Making a conscientious effort to befriend someone is a lost art in today’s social structure; taking the initiative to buck that trend will effect change.
Besides, if you decide to room with someone you are familiar with from high school, you are simply recreating your familiar routine. You will feel less inclined to go out and less likely to explore new possibilities since you feel more at ease in your room or dorm.
Of course, deciding to room with someone you only remotely knew from back home can be an even worse situation, equivalent to jamming a square block into a circular peg. You are trying to force a relationship to blossom when there is obviously nothing there. If you guys weren’t friends in high school, what makes this unpredictable environment any more suiting?
Now, there is always the possibility that you will end up disliking your random roommate. That is a common concern that many people have heading into the new school year, but this issue should be seen more of as a challenge rather than a nuisance. It is important to work through differences and develop strong relationships with people that you might not see eye to eye with.
There will always be a level of uncertainty in whatever endeavor you embark upon in life. Accepting this fact and taking on the challenge head on is indicative of what type of person you are or are striving towards. So put yourself out there and check the random roommate box.