After receiving my acceptance to Conn, I was extremely excited and completely overwhelmed by all of the tasks that needed to be completed before Move-In Day. My biggest priority was to fill out the housing questionnaire about living preferences. It seemed like where I lived was a do-or-die situation. I thought there could definitely be some wrong answers, but I also did not know which ones those would be. Now I understand that there is a place for everyone on campus, and each building/location has specific benefits.

Alternative housing with themes including substance free and quiet housing is available starting your first semester at Conn. Most floors at Conn are co-ed, but there are single-sex floor options in some buildings. Aside from specialty housing, first years can indicate their top three dorm preferences on their housing questionnaire.

During the summer before my first year at Conn, I looked up “Residence Houses” on the Connecticut College website. The information online made it seem like south campus was the place for me, so I set my preferences for three houses in south: Jane Adams, Harkness, and Freeman. I ended up in a very cozy triple on the fourth floor of Harkness House, the all-girls floor. I was lucky because not only do I love the building I am in, but I also adore the two girls I was randomly paired with.

Now that I am finishing my first year, I am tasked with choosing my room during the housing lottery for the first time. At the end of each year, students are given group housing lottery numbers and class year lottery numbers that dictate the time when you can choose a room. I decided to attempt group housing, where three or four friends live in a row of singles next to each other. Our lottery numbers were too low to live in the building we wanted to as it turned out, so we put our names into the class lottery. This comes after the group lottery, so students (like us) who don’t get the row of singles they desire can find housing individually. I survived the housing lottery, and you can too.  

Here are some things I have learned:  

  • The dorms in south campus, like Jane Adams, Harkness, and Freeman, have great views of Tempel Green and are located very close to most academic buildings but are not as close to Harris Dining Hall or Shain Library.

  • Central Campus is home to Burdick and Blackstone, and also non-specialty dorms such as Windham, Plant, Branford, Larabee, and Katherine Blunt.

  • Central is right in the middle of campus, making it easy to get to any part of campus very quickly, and the dorms in Central are very close to the library for those who enjoy late-night studying.

  • North Campus consists of the Plex, a complex of the newest dorms on campus, which boast air conditioning, and are attached to the main dining hall, Harris, but the Plex is also the furthest away from the green.

Though all locations have their pros and cons, there is no bad place to live on campus. It’s always a little nerve-racking to choose housing, but the residential life staff is very willing to work with everyone to make sure that they find the perfect fit. And just remember no matter where you live, there is always a coffee shop nearby. 

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