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Dorms: South vs Snitchcock vs BJ

CaedisCaedis Registered User Posts: 28 New Member
So my top three dorms in order (as it is on my housing application) are: Snitchcock, South, BJ.

But recently I've been struggling over Snitchcock, mostly because of its reputation for being "beyond quirky". I'm quirky myself but I tone it down and I don't want to see the extremes. South on the other hand seems more preferable because it's more recent, has "better" dining apparently (though you can go to both dining halls so this doesn't seem too bad), and the doubles are a pretty nice size with lots of natural sunlight. But I also like Snitchcock's proximity to the quad and I'm a pretty lazy person, so waking up 5 minutes before class starts sounds perfect to me.

I know there's still a few weeks before the deadline to revise housing applications, but I'm not sure if I should change my preference. Either way I'm hoping to get a double and nice house culture, though it seems like South has less distinct house culture because they're not as separate (this is what I heard during my stay at BJ).

Aside from that, BJ seems like a mix of the two. It's quirky but also a little social, and I enjoy that. I'm introverted but also like being social, so I would prefer to be able to spend some time with my headphones on and not really worrying about parties going on or whatever. I'm not a party person, and no drugs or alcohol (I'm a clean slate as far as that goes). But BJ is pretty old and the amenities aren't as "shiny" as South...

So is there anyone else that's struggling with these? Is there anything I've missed mentioning? I really wish I could spend a week in each to get a feel for them... I really liked Snitchcock in the beginning but I don't know if I can handle the reputation.

Replies to: Dorms: South vs Snitchcock vs BJ

  • JHSJHS Registered User Posts: 18,018 Senior Member
    Don't over-obsess about which dorm to choose. Even assuming you get your first choice, in the final analysis it's a pretty minor aspect of your college experience. Any dorm you live in will have good and bad points; you will learn to appreciate the good things and to live with the bad. Your dorm experience will be affected a lot by your roommates and the people who live near you, and that's basically random.

    Both my kids more or less hated their first-year dorms. One got her last choice, the other his first choice (and he had the benefit of his sibling's experience and a couple of overnight visits). Not liking their dorms had almost nothing to do with their overall experience at the University of Chicago, which was almost entirely positive and happy.

    Like everyone else, they spent lots of time with members of their house during their first couple of months at Chicago. Like lots of people (but probably not everyone), they found that by spring there was only a handful of people in their house they wanted to spend time with, and a year later that was down to 1 or 2 people. But by then they had lots of other friends elsewhere; they weren't ever lonely.

    The "character" of the dorms is overrated, too. All the dorms have a mix of different personality types, and their reputations don't actually matter to anyone living there or anyone they know. Both my kids are pretty social. Kid #1 lived in a supposedly un-social dorm, but all that meant was that more often than not she partied in other dorms (and she always preferred to do her partying someplace other than her room anyway). The people in her dorm weren't unsocial at all, as a group, either. Kid #2 lived in what was then the big party dorm, but he, too, wound up having most of his social life elsewhere. The friends he made in the dorm were by and large non-partiers.
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