Honesty is the best policy when it comes to taking roommate surveys

In the process of filling out college applications months before a student actually begins school, students soon come to the crossroad of an important decision: to have their own room or be brave enough to share a room with a stranger.

I came to a similar crossroad when I first started filling out my housing application, and I considered myself courageous enough to choose the latter. I had once shared my bedroom with an exchange student for almost a year, so I was accustomed living in a small space with two people.

When filling out the housing application, I put down a double room preference. A series of questions came up pertaining to lifestyle choices.

These questions involve preferences such as ‘would you live with someone who smokes/drinks’ and ‘do you smoke/drink.’ The application also asks where you would usually study, what time you go to sleep and wake up, and preferred room temperature.

These questions are important to think about.

Robert Tattershall, director of Housing and Conference Services, said all students’ roommate applications are put through an algorithm that takes the students’ answers and chooses roommates based on their best matches.

However, the selection is limited based on factors such as hall choices and the time of application.

Tattershall said the assignments will start running in late May and early June and will continue to run as more people apply during the summer.

When embarking on this roommate search, make sure you know your priorities. After answering the questions, you have to rank them. Be nitpicky here.

A common bothersome habit can send the relationship downhill. If you absolutely do not want to live with someone who wakes up early, put your wakeup time at the top of the list.

When I first received my residence hall information during the summer, I also received an email announcing my new roommate. Immediately, I shot her a quick email to let her know who I was and that we were rooming together. Two weeks later, I got a reply with similar information.

Making these connections early on is crucial.

Throughout the course of the summer, I kept in touch with my roommate and we got to know each other better by talking about hobbies, our families, and how packing was coming along. When it was time to move in together, my new roommate didn’t seem like a total stranger.

There are benefits to having a roommate. For myself, sharing a room meant I could split the cost with my roommate and it would be cheaper for both of us. We help each other keep track of things and keep the room clean. I got along with my roommate well and we became friends.

The application includes a choice to choice to prearrange a roommate that’s already your friend. However, students who go with the random assignments must keep in mind that it’s not completely random. Don’t think too much about the mystery roommate. Answer the application questions honestly and leave the rest to the system.

Catherine Kruse is a freshman english major from Sumer She can be contacted at 335-2290 or by [email protected] The opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of the staff of The Daily Evergreen or those of Student Publications.