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Thursday, June 18, 2015

How to find a great roommate

As many of you know, I hit the absolute jackpot in regards to my roommate. Olivia is my partner in crime and I know my freshman year wouldn't have been nearly as good without her. However, around this time last year, I wasn't quite so sure that I would find a great roommate like I did.

Now, I had a special situation when it came to selecting a roommate. As an athlete, I knew that I wanted to be with another athlete. However, at this time last year, I didn't want to room with one of my teammates. I figured that we'd be spending so much time together anyway that I wouldn't enjoy living with one of my teammates. I was SO wrong!

It was great to have a roommate who was on the same schedule as me. We could drag each other to practice at 5 in the morning and encourage each other to go to the library when we would much rather be watching Netflix in our beds.

If you are an incoming athlete, I strongly recommend one of your teammates or at least another athlete. They are much more likely to be understanding of your practice schedule and respectful of your very important sleep schedule, especially before big games or meets.

 I began my roommate search by joining the Rhodes "Class of 2018" Facebook group. Everyone had a chance to introduce themselves and peruse their incoming classmates. If you have something similar like that for your school, join it! Just be sure it's the right one - I know a hacker was going around trying to create false incoming freshman class pages for a lot of schools, so be sure to double check it's in fact the valid Facebook page.

The next thing I did was to try RoomSurf. It's sort of like eHarmony for roommates. I ended up meeting 3 of the girls I talked to on RoomSurf once I got to Rhodes and we got along really well - I know I would have enjoyed rooming with each of them!

In addition, most schools have a sort of compatibility test or quiz that goes along with housing registration. You can describe if you are messy or if you like to go to bed really early and things like that - habits that you wouldn't think are a big deal, but that can become a huge deal if they aren't compatible with your roommate's.

 If you find someone you're interested in rooming with through any of these outlets, start talking to them as much as you feel comfortable! It's definitely awkward at first, but if you can't get comfortable talking to someone, there's no way you'll feel comfortable living with them.

It's also important to ask him or her about their living habits. I wanted to make sure that Olivia was ok with the fact that I go to bed fairly early (#guilty) and that I keep my space in a state of... organized chaos most of the time. Another tip - be honest! If you like your room to be a pigsty, you need to be up front about it. You'll save yourself a spat later.

All in all, you just need to be yourself. Your walls will come down around your roommate eventually, so it's best to try and keep them down when you're getting to know a potential roommate. It'll make finding a great one much easier, and if all goes well, the first time you meet, you'll both be so nervous you can't go to the bathroom and decide to play the Jonas Brothers so there isn't an awkward silence. :)

I suppose it is now fitting to mention that today is Olivia's birthday. Happy birthday to you, my Chipotle-loving, Doritos-obsessed, kick-ass butterflier, and Computer Science genius best friend!

xx, Victoria

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xx, Victoria