When I was a senior in high school in Tampa and trying to decide
where to attend college, I knew I wanted a school where students came first. I
wanted to be more than a number or a seat on a chart. At the University of North
Florida, I got that. It is the perfect combination the resources of a large
state school and the feel of a small, liberal arts campus. As UNF students, we
get the best of both worlds. My decision was made.
I decided to live in the residence halls because I wanted to meet new
people and become involved on campus. I was coming to UNF without knowing
anyone else and I was ready to make new, lasting friends. I liked the idea of
having all the UNF resources right in my backyard.
I had a blast living on campus because I was in and out of my friends’
rooms all the time for potlucks, movie nights or just to hang out. I learned
quickly that when you come to college, your friends become your family. I
enjoyed having friends from all different majors living in the room next to
mine or just down the hall. It was a great opportunity to get a different
perspective from friends whose minds are as young and open as mine is. Plus, my
first year here I stayed in the Fountains, the newest residence hall on campus.
It was really nice to live in a brand-new hall that had everything at our
fingertips — pools, fitness classes, game rooms, gym, food convenience store
and much more. My resident adviser (RA) was excellent at coming up with things
to do as a group that were actually fun — we once got the entire floor to join
in on a game called Mafia and it was a blast to get to know the people with
whom I lived.
It was very convenient to live on campus. While it was nice to be
able to wake up just before my classes started, it was even better to be able
to go back to my room between classes and grab some lunch or take a nap. You
can’t do that when you don’t live on campus. If I forgot something for class, I
was just five minutes away from going back to grab it. The other convenience
was being able to use the resources UNF provides like ACE tutoring or Osprey
Production movie nights whenever I needed them.
I used the study rooms in my hall all the time to do my homework.
Sometimes, my roommates would goof around and I couldn’t study with them distracting
me in the background. Instead of having to walk all the way to the library, I
was able to walk a couple feet down the hall to utilize the study rooms.
I moved from the Fountains to the Villages between my first and
second year. I loved the Villages because they had a full kitchen and I was
really enamored with the spiral staircase and porch. And my circle of friends
grew to include more people from different class years because it is an upper-class
residence hall. I really enjoyed meeting the people there because most of them
were in their majors and really passionate about what they were studying.
My best memory from living in the dorms has to be sitting on my
little porch in the Villages when it started to cool off in the fall. I would
do my homework out there every single day from mid-October to April. I lived on
the third floor so I also kept the porch door wide open all the time and
enjoyed the weather offered by the First Coast.
I would highly recommend living in the residence halls because you
don’t know what you’re missing! It is definitely a worth-while experience for
first-time-in-college students. It’s nice to pay a lump sum for housing and not
have to worry about bills or maintenance fees every month. As a freshman, I
definitely appreciated not having to worry about that “adult stuff” while I was
off experiencing being away from home for the first time.
I’m in my third year at UNF in the graphic design program and I’m
enjoying it immensely. I have many dreams for my future, and UNF is going to
help me achieve them all. After college, I’m thinking about getting a master’s
in animation and working for a motion design studio. I want to travel the world
as well and I’m currently looking at study abroad programs with UNF to help me
experience other cultures.
UNF is a great school
because the people that work here are so attentive and really want students to
excel. All of my professors in the design program are phenomenal and I believe
are pushing me to succeed. I really feel like I’m preforming to my greatest
potential here at UNF and that is going to help me mold the career I want.