May 21, 2008 9:13 PM
Living in the dorms is quite an experience! I'll definitely miss my floormates and my roomies! Although dorms are quite pricey, it is worth the experience! For new students coming next year, I suggest living in one for at least a semester.
There are different types of dorms which I would personally split into three categories: suites, mini-suites, and regular dorms (and there's also the fancy Wada apartments sort-of-like dorms right across my window--they have their own kitchen!! good luck getting into Wada though).
These three types vary in social level, from least to most respectively. Of course, it is still up to the student to take the initiative to socialize and it also depends on his/her floormates.
So what's really the different between the three?
Suites are expensive, really expensive! They get their own bathroom and study lounge though, and most of the time the environment is more quite than regular dorms. Rooms are spacious too! I think there are two rooms in a suite and each room can either have 2 or 3 people.
Regular dorms are much cheaper. But unlike suites, bathrooms are shared. So you have to walk down the hallway with your soap and shampoo to take a shower. Not only that, you see people brushing their teeth and whatever. But don't worry, there's nothing to be scared of (though sometimes weird stuff goes on). And because the bathroom is shared, you get to meet your floormates not just by chance! The rooms are smaller though, and there's way more people in each floor. Regular dorms are definitely social.
Something in between are the mini-suites. The price is in between too. So is the social level. I think there's only two mini-suites around Cal (Unit 1, Christian and Unit 2, Towle -> where I am right now, well at least just for another day before I move out). Bathroom are shared, but just with your suitemates and roomies. In some cases though, about 1 out of 15 rooms in each floor, you can have just 1 room--that means 1 bathroom just for you and your roomies! Luckily I did get that "special" mini-suite. Another difference is that mini-suites don't have their own study lounge vs the suites, BUT since these are only a few years old, everything looks quite new and clean! The rooms are really spacious too! (triples are, doubles are okay but still more spacious than regular dorms). I might sound biased because this is my type of dorm, but after visiting the other ones I really think mini-suites are the best deal.
To sum up the three:
Suites - Most expensive , spacious rooms, own bathroom and study lounge, quiet.
Mini-suites - Price is in between, spacious rooms, own bathroom but shared study lounge, not quite social as regular dorms
Regular dorms - Way cheaper, smaller space, shared bathroom and study lounge, VERY social
Again, the "socialness" depends on you. Anyways, I hope I didn't talk about the dorms a little too late. You can always petition to change though like my case. Suites are too expensive for me so I emailed for a dorm change.
Thanks for reading!
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