Let’s be honest here- dorm life is anything but glamorous. You get a bunch of college age kids, most tasting freedom for the very first time and many without the basic house keeping skills such as laundry and making sure to throw food away before expiration, throw them together in a building with rooms, many of which are smaller then the standardized jail sell, and things don’t turn out exactly pretty. But that’s okay, it’s part of the college experience, and with the right attitude it can even be fun.
It’s an obvious conclusion that some colleges and universities have better student housing then others. From personal experience, I know this to be very true. So having the inside scoop can always be helpful. Below you will find the ins and outs, highlights and downsides, of college dorm life at Grand Valley State University.
Grand Valley State University provides many student housing options, and from my prospective many of them are superior to the normal college housing situation. For one, many Grand Valley State housing buildings are quite new, and feature up-to-date accommodations. You have the option of choosing from traditional style living centers, suite-style, and apartment style (which also is available in single-occupancy rooms and double-occupancy rooms). All living centers have laundry (activated by a handy key card, not quarters), community rooms with TV’s (and many with microwaves and sinks), and most have vending machines.
The Grand Valley State traditional living centers are pretty much your run of the mill college dorms. There are two people to a room with a community bathroom down the hall with individual stalls and showers. Traditional style living centers are co-ed and separated by floor (girls on first floor, guys on second, etc.). These buildings are probably some of Grand Valley State’s oldest, and where they certainly aren’t run down, they aren’t outshining any of the new living centers on campus. Also, most of the traditional style living centers are curvy. Yes, I do mean literally curvy. The buildings themselves are shaped like an “s” or half of an “s” and the hallways curve through the building, and therefore the walls in the rooms do not make a completely symmetrical square. There is an unconfirmed rumor that, upon Grand Valley State University’s conception, they built the original dorm rooms with a curved structure so that they could be converted into a jail if the institution failed as a college. Whatever the reason, they are shaped unconventionally. However, they are the least expensive living option on campus at Grand Valley. Some say that living in traditional style housing is also the most socially active environment and most conducive to making friends. I’m not sure if I completely agree, but it could very well be true.
You can also chose suit style, which would provide you with a private bathroom shared with four people (you, your roommate, and two people in the connecting dorm room). Most suites are in newer buildings, though some are in the old ones.
The third option Grand Valley State University offers is apartment style housing. These dorm rooms are by far superior to the previously mentioned living options. If you choose double occupancy (slightly cheaper) you will have a bedroom with two beds, two desks, two wardrobes, etc., a bathroom to share with only your roommate, and a kitchen. The kitchen includes a sink, roomy countertop, stove/oven, refrigerator, and cabinets. There is also a table and chairs. If you choose single occupancy rooms, the unit would consist of a bathroom off of the kitchen, and two separate bedrooms also off the kitchen.
Grand Valley State University also has housing specially reserved for students in the honors college. I’ve heard these living units are by far the best, but have never actually seen them.
All of the above housing options at Grand Valley State University are primarily those for incoming freshman. I believe they are also offered to sophomores, but in my experience not many students stay in any of these campus housing options after freshmen year. Instead, they venture off into campus apartments or one of the many apartment complexes surrounding the campus and specifically catered toward Grand Valley students.
For the most part, Grand Valley State University has exceptional housing options, and provides comfortable and clean environments for students to live and study in. The best way for you to get a good picture of the housing situations is to arrange a visit to campus and take a tour. Most tours won’t actually visit each of the different living styles, but if you request viewing a certain one it could probably be arranged.
Living on campus your freshmen year is a great experience and can help make your college career successful and memorable, and Grand Valley State University makes living on campus all the more enjoyable.