Top of the Morning, July 29, 2014

Top of the Morning, July 29, 2014

Tonight, University of Illinois freshmen find out who their roommate is for Year 1. But for a lot of campus rookies, it won't be much of a surprise.

"More and more freshmen are requesting roommates they have chosen before they arrive, and some seek each other out on Facebook," UI associate housing director Kirsten Ruby said. "Our experience is that friends from high school who room together rarely remain friends after living together. But we will honor their preferences as much as possible."

Here's more on the mixing-and-matching process at the UI, courtesy Ruby.

Has anyone ever asked for a do-over?

We do get requests for hall changes throughout the summer. This year we received about 700 requests (12 percent), which is fewer than last year.

Is snoring a criterion?

No. We do ask students about their preferences for light and sound while studying and sleeping, but snoring is not mentioned.

Ever try to pair school rivals like kids from Unity and St. Joseph-Ogden?

We try to avoid roommate conflicts as much as possible.

Do you recommend roommates to touch base before they arrive on campus?

Absolutely. Most students dive right in, even without our recommendation. We provide a list of questions to help start the conversation if needed, but most do fine on their own. We advise students to talk about what they're planning to bring to campus, so they don't end up with two of everything. We also hope they dive a little deeper into topics like how neat they think they'd like to keep their room and how they like to study. Our hall staff has roommate agreements to help guide the conversation and head off potential conflict before it could happen.

Has anyone asked to live alone?

We do have a few requests for singles. We are able to accommodate some, for health or accessibility reasons. Most of our rooms for freshmen are doubles, and the learning and growing that accompanies that experience is very valuable.

What's the strangest request that you've received?

Well, I can tell you our guide to living includes waterbeds as items not permitted in the residence halls.

When can freshmen start moving in?

Students have already started to arrive. Many international students come to campus early, and we have housing available.

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