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Commuting Hinders Community

Jazsmine McDonald in her self decorated dorm.

Dorming and Commuting Benefits

Jewell B. Mason

Not feeling the “college life” because you don’t dorm?  Notice all the gorgeous flyers about interesting programs that seem too late to stay out for?  It must be tough to gain a lot of Post Pride when you arrive and depart from campus right after classes.  This sort of schedule is the epitome of what my high school days were like.  College is about inside the classroom as well as outside.   Besides the new highly controversial common hour starting at half past noon, clubs and organizations hold the majority of their programs during the evening.  If my last class ends in the afternoon, I wouldn’t aimlessly walk around campus until eight o’clock at night; nor would I expect anyone else too.  Luckily between classes and after swiping my I.D. card twice a day at the Winnick, I’m able to go to my room and kick back.  But if I didn’t dorm; where would I go?  Hillwood has a computer lab, a lounge, and the second floor filled with couches for commuters to rest, eat, and study.  But what if that’s just not enough?  Walk around the parking lots behind Hillwood during common hour.  You’ll see plenty of commuters either pulling out to go eat lunch at Wendy’s and Red Mango or resting in their car with the seat all the way reclined and the radio on full blast.  Either of these options does not promote campus unity or a sense of Post pride.

Yes, there is a clear understanding dorming will create an even deeper hole in your pockets, roughly twelve thousand dollars, but there are benefits to it.  Stating the positive aspects and drawbacks to the dorm life here at C.W. Post would be ideal.  Moreover, this information could easily be found throughout the brochures lying around the admissions office.  I cannot relate as closely as I’d like to commuters because during my two years at Post, I’ve always dormed, and I’ve been a proud resident of Nassau Hall.  I could explain why I believe dorming over commuting is a better choice if you have the option to do so, but why not ask a commuter turned resident who can really relate?

Freshman Jazsmine McDonald, a member of Post Concert Dance Company, currently is a resident here on campus this spring semester.  She was a commuter for just one semester, fall of 2010, and would choose dorming all over again next fall.  “It’s the best of both worlds…worth it in my opinion,” Jazsmine claims.  Jazsmine is originally from out of state but commuted by car last fall from East New York, Brooklyn.  She added “it’s easier to dorm because you do not waste time stuck in traffic, waking up extra early just to commute so you sleep less”. As a dance major having more time to rest was a key element in her decision to dorm.   I can’t see myself waking up any earlier for my 9:30, so she had me at “you have to wake up earlier”.  Dorming doesn’t mean you have to stay on campus at all times either.  One of the negative aspects of dorming Jazsmine pointed out is not seeing family and friends as much as you like if you weren’t staying on campus.  When I asked if she felt more a part of the C.W. Post community now that she is a resident, Jazsmine said yes without any hesitation.  “Dorming allows you to become more involved with student life here on campus, it also helps with the whole college experience”, she hinted, “it’s just something you can get used to”.  Jazsmine feels for all the commuters possibly looking to become a resident just like she did.  She says, “becoming a resident helps with one’s independence.  You’re going to be on your own anyways; it’s a precursor to your future”.

A healthy campus community is a key factor in keeping the college alive and exciting.  How can we have a thriving community when less and less students leave right after classes are finished?  Dorming is not the most important aspect of college life but it definitely helps gain the most out of it.  If commuters have any interest at all in dorming they should contact Residence Life located in the back of Post Hall.  Whether you’re interested in the suite life on campus or a strict quiet housing such as Suffolk Hall, each dorm is different in its own right; just ask the residents.  Commuters, if getting more involved on campus is your goal but lack of time is an obstacle, dorming on campus would be a benefit.

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