Student Residence Life: Living off-campus is the right move

In my sophomore year here at Geneseo someone wise told me, "Steve, you can do anything."

Of course, I was speaking to the mirror, so I believed it. It was time to break free from the chains of dormitory living and venture into the unknown. It turned out to be the seventh best choice of my life, right behind making French toast just now – yes, the perks of living off campus include cooking whenever you feel like it.

Overbearing rules, tight living quarters and terrible food are all characteristic of prison and campus housing.

Off-campus housing offers complete and utter autonomy – and anatomy, considering the sophistication of having your own place really entices the opposite sex. In all seriousness, however, living off campus brings with it endless opportunities.

First of all, not having to share a bedroom gives you extra space as well as privacy – priceless assets not available in cramped residence halls. Second, when cooking for yourself you can prepare more options and, ideally, start adopting healthier eating habits. Finally, without resident assistants patrolling around you, can partake in questionable activities without being on edge. These may include but are not limited to: playing loud music, not defrosting your freezer before breaks and using as many extension cords as your heart desires.

Most importantly, off-campus living provides a refuge. You will no longer live in just a room or suite. You will have a home.

To be fair, there are a few downsides to living outside the boundaries of the university. You will have to clean up after yourself. You do not have your own private cleaning crew anymore, so get on your knees and start scrubbing that porcelain.

The maintenance you put into your residence, however, will give you a great sense of accomplishment. It will also leave you with the skills necessary to maintain a house full of rug-rats years down the road, or next year if you're not careful.

Another downside is how removed you become from the goings on around campus. The number of social interactions you will have will dramatically decrease. This can easily be remedied, though, with your new piece of real estate. Did someone say party? I did. The spacious new dwelling will be party central if you play your cards right. All of your friends can come together and enjoy a rousing night of debauchery that stretches into the wee pre-dawn hours.

I would like to leave you with some final pieces of advice: Choose your housemates carefully. Try to find a location that best suits your needs. Find out what is included in advertised rent rates before signing a lease. Read your lease closely to uncover hidden rules that may inhibit your preferred living style. And most importantly, know where you will do your laundry; GTL will not be the same if your threads are subpar.

Off campus is the way to go. Will you join me?u