By: Michelle Moreal
With second semester just beginning it’s safe to say the rest of the school year is bound to fly by in a blink of an eye. Before we know it, we’ll be preparing for our future years in University, and some of us will even be graduating. Getting back into the swing of things at the beginning of each school year is always a bit of struggle, regardless of how many years you’ve been doing it for. First-year students currently living in residence, however, will probably be making one of the biggest transitions in their University careers when going into second-year.
For the majority of students at Brock, the time has come for us to round up a group of friends who are soon to be housemates, and to start looking into off-campus living. Older students have probably done this at least a few times, but this is the first time for the first years and definitely be a big step. Living with roommates is probably something they are already exposed to, however most have probably not been given the opportunity to live with multiple different people in one house that they’ve never lived with before. Finding your own niche and living the way you want to are big parts of University, so when multiple people in a house are trying to figure this out for themselves at the same time, there can be some friction. Generally being one of the first times any first- year Brock students have had to do this, the process is probably foreign to everyone starting out. Signing leases and paying bills are always things that our parents did and now we’re a part of the process? Again – a big step.
Generally speaking, the transition is definitely a hard one. Moving from a traditional residence to a housing situation with three or four other people can be difficult. Not only are you probably having to learn to cook for yourselves and take care of the lawn and make sure all the doors are locked at night, but you are also learning to live with other people that you may not have lived with before. Any rooming situation can be difficult to adjust to, but to do it while learning how to take care of yourself as well is challenging. No longer will there be those beautifully handcrafted chicken zinger wraps and precious meal plan dollars to rely on at the residence cafeterias– it’ll be time to venture out to the grocery store on our own budgets.
Transitioning into second-year is hard enough with new living situations, new environments, and a brand new neighbourhood, but on top of that comes the struggle of feeding ourselves and maintaining the closest thing to a healthy diet. With all of the added stress that these new responsibilities will bring, it is easy, and tempting, to rely on easy choices like microwaveable Kraft Dinner or frozen pizza. An even easier option would be to skip out on meals completely. Not only that, but the gym isn’t just a walk across campus anymore for those moving from residence to off campus housing, so we can’t even continuously lie to ourselves and pretend we’ll workout to be healthier.
With everything being a little further away, or a few more busses farther than it used to be, the transition for most first-years going into second year can be a big one. Easier for some and harder for others, it is definitely a huge change and that is why it can be challenging. The differences from living on residence and starting out at University and moving into off campus housing and learning to live with roommates is a new experience for everybody but it is definitely one that’s beneficial.