Living on Campus: Student Housing Coming to a Community College Near You

Living on Campus: Student Housing Coming to a Community College Near You
Just a few short years ago, community college dormitories were a rarity. Today, more and more community colleges are building student housing, with an array of benefits for students. Learn about who is jumping onto the dorm bandwagon.

Community colleges have historically provided a much different environment than the traditional four-year university. One of the biggest differences between the two is that students at community colleges do not tend to live in a single community on or near the college campus. However, many community colleges across the country are tuning in to the advantages on-campus housing can provide to students of all ages. This article will explore the new trend of living on a community college campus and some of the schools around the country that are adopting this model for a richer, more community-oriented academic environment.

Benefits of Living On Campus

Community colleges are now realizing some of the benefits of living on campus that four-year colleges have known for generations, including:

  • Better proximity to college resources like the library and recreation center
  • Exposure to international lifestyles that comes from living near fellow students from around the globe
  • The ability to fully immerse oneself in the college experience by remaining in the environment after classes are finished for the day
  • Ease of meeting other students and building relationships with those in a similar season of life
  • Apartments or dormitories that are often fully furnished and affordable, providing an economic housing option to cash-strapped students

Today, many community college students are beginning to enjoy these benefits as their school campuses are adding housing to the mix. We will take a look at some of the specific colleges that allow students to live on campus or are adding housing options in the near future.

This video shows the on-campus housing at Tompkins Cortland Community College.

Dutchess Community College Offers Dormitories

According to a recent report in the Post-Star, another community college in New York is adding the option of dormitory living. Dutchess Community College had a ground-breaking ceremony for its first dormitory, which will house around 435 students when it is completed. According to the Poughkeepsie Journal, the decision to construct a dormitory on the college campus has not been without its share of controversy.

The president of the college, D. David Conklin, told the Journal, "More students are enrolling at Dutchess Community College than ever before." Many of the students are coming right out of high school and want a traditional college experience at a price they can afford. Students are currently living in off-campus housing, some of which have been described by college officials as "inappropriate" or "unsafe."

However, not everyone agrees that dormitories are the right solution for this community college. Some believe the dorms are an unnecessary expense because most of the students at the school live at home and drive themselves to class. Others are concerned about the additional burden the living arrangements will place on the local fire department. Dutchess will join other New York community colleges in adding on-campus housing, including Tompkins Cortland, Herkimer, and Onondaga.

This video shows the on-campus housing at Dutchess Community College.

Erie Community College Adding Second Housing Complex

Erie Community College is also hopping on board the campus housing bandwagon, by adding a second apartment project that will house 350 students in Amherst. ECC President Jack F. Quinn Jr. told Buffalo News, "The community college life has changed in the last 20 years. When community colleges first started, students came to class, they went to work, they went home. Now students are looking for the total college experience. For many students, that means living away from home."

Although the latest housing project is still in the preliminary stages, developers hope to open up the facility to students by the fall of 2012. The additional housing brings Erie in line with many of the other colleges in the area that already offer housing options to their students. Quinn believes insufficient housing may be one reason that Erie has been losing some of their student population to nearby colleges that do provide adequate housing for all of the campus locations.

Corning Community College Adding Dorms

Another New York community college adding dormitories to its campus is Corning Community College. This school has approved the addition of two 150-bed dormitories to its Spencer Hill campus, allowing hundreds of Corning students to experience traditional college life firsthand. College board chairman Tom Blumer told the Stueben Courier, "This is an old trend. Many students who want a four-year degree but can't afford to go to a four-year institution right off the bat are choosing to go to community colleges that have the residential housing experience and then moving onto a SUNY institution or a private institution."

Apartments Available at Green River Community College

Green River Community College also advertises campus housing on their website – in the form of college apartments that are fully furnished and in close proximity to college facilities. The apartments offer a residential community that features community kitchens and private bedrooms. The community feeling is apparent throughout this housing facility, with plenty of privacy and independence for students living away from home for the first time. The lease agreement can be found right on the college website, along with additional contact information for the apartment management.

This video reports on Green River Community College's on-campus housing.

Campus housing is no longer restricted to expensive four-year college institutions. Today, many community colleges are also providing a taste of traditional college life with on-campus housing of all shapes and sizes. For students just entering college after high school and looking for a chance to live on their own in a safe setting, campus housing may be just the ticket. Whether you are interested in dorm living or the independence of a campus apartment, you can find housing to meet your needs at a community college near you.

Questions? Contact us on Facebook. @communitycollegereview

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