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College Roommate Qualms

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Should I be worried about my new college dorm roommate?

College Roommate Qualms

If you're off to college or university for the first time, you might be a little concerned about your roommate match. Chances are, you were asked to complete a detailed questionnaire about your study, sleep, eating, and personal habits that affect how you interact with another person. A good match will bring fewer conflicts, enhance your study space, and add to the quality of your life on campus. A bad match will leave you stressed and unable to enjoy the college experience. But don't worry! There are things you can do to protect your interests without resorting to anything drastic.

A lot of colleges require you and your roommate to draw up a signed contract that defines what you expect from each other in terms of guests, personal property, cleanliness, study habits, sleep habits, smoking, drinking, personal space, shared costs, etc. Students are then required to make a copy for each other (to be posted where it's visible within the dorm room) and a copy submitted to the person in charge of the dorm.

If conflict do arise between you and your roommate, you can remind the roommate of the signed contract, try to work out a compromise with your roommate, or get a mediator (someone hired within the college or university to be an objective third-party) to help come up with a productive solution. Remember, giving your roommate a little slack now and then might come in handy when you need a break or a favour.



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