Residence Review: Welcome Home: A quick house warming guide to the ins and outs of residence life

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Welcome home freshmen! For the next year you will be living in the residences of UNBSJ and calling them your home. Whether you’re in the MacKay or the Dunn residence there are some things you need to know before you settle into your new digs.

First of all, remember you’re not alone. Living in residence for the first time can be a scary and intimidating thing, but you don’t have to face it on your own. Residence Advisors (RAs) are always around to help with any needs or concerns that you may have, and there are approximately 240 other students taking this journey with you. These people will become your family away from home, so don’t be shy about getting to know them and asking for help if you need it.

Roommates are probably a foreign creature for most students moving into residence, but like any alien life form, if you treat them with respect and understanding then they should do the same. Be considerate of the person you are living with; try to get to know them and the way they live so you two can work together while sharing your space. If you both work at it then you might even end up as friends before the end of the year.

Space in residence is limited and you have to share it, so you need to make the most of the little room you do have. Get creative with your storage options and figure out what works best for you and your roommate. There are closet attachments that can give you more shelf space or shelves designed to go over your toilet to provide extra space in the bathroom. Also, if you keep things clean and organized then space won’t be as much of a problem, it’s just a matter of good planning before you find a permanent home for your stuff.

A good tip for first time residence students is to embrace the residence social scene but don’t overdo it. Yes there will be parties, lots of parties, but that doesn’t mean you should go wild every night of the week. All students should experience university parties, but remember that you are living at school to go to school, so with that in mind enjoy yourself while keeping your priorities straight.

Always remember you’re a student first and a member of residence second. Try to be involved in residence life but don’t let it overshadow your studies. Go to the events and get to know the other students living with you, but don’t forget why you’re in residence. Instead use the educational resources that come with residence, such as the study lounges–a great opportunity for study groups and the ease of access to the campus at all times.

A final bit of advice for new coming MacKay and Dunn students: be yourself and enjoy your time in residence. This is the time to become who you want to be in life and make the most of your university experience. Get out there, study hard, get involved in your residence, and just have fun!


Emily is in her fourth year of Political Science. She loves studying and academics which follows into her research work. She's a stern black coffee drinker and is a proud Acadienne. When she's not working or doing school work, you can find Emily listening to 70s music on vinyl and watching Parks and Recreation. If you ask her about parliamentary institutions, she won't stop talking.