Spring break is officially here! Since I’ll be staying in Oxford for the next six weeks in between traveling, I thought I would talk a little bit about where I live and how the experience has been thus far. The majority of students at Mansfield College live on campus, but the visiting students and a few matriculated students always live in off-campus housing. My particular building is about a fifteen minute walk from campus, whereas the other off-campus housing is about a twenty-five minute walk (I definitely lucked out!). As someone who has only ever lived in dorms on Wheaton’s tiny campus back home, I wasn’t really sure what to expect.
My student accommodations are barred with a large gate that opens with a key we all carry. At first I wasn’t quite sure if I was in the right place when I first arrived, but then I noticed the large Mansfield crests hanging on the gate. This dorm is quite far from town, meaning that it feels more like a normal residential area than the more “academic” part of Oxford. Although it’s a bit of walk to town from my accommodations, we’re much closer to restaurants, bars, and shops. Definitely helpful when you don’t want to walk far for food!
Before coming to Oxford I had never lived in a room alone. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about not having a roommate. Would I miss having someone else in the room? While I was a bit lonely at first, over time I’ve come to really enjoy having my own room. Not only is it easier to be on my own schedule (I can go to bed and wake up whenever I want without having to worry about my roommate’s schedule, etc.), but it’s also nice to have some privacy whenever I go back to my room at night. While I would love to have a roommate again at Wheaton, I also wouldn’t mind having a single now that I know what it’s like.
My favorite part about having my own room is decorating. We’re not allowed to put much on the walls due to fire safety regulations, but we are given huge bulletin boards to cover as we please. I brought a few decorations from my dorm room back at Wheaton (the little flags, the “It’s OK” banner, the Wheaton pennant, etc.) and I’ve accumulated a bunch of postcards since coming here. Of course, my absolute favorite decoration are Polaroid photos. Pretty soon I’ll have run out of space for them all!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this brief look into my student accommodation at Oxford! Living here in my own room has been much more enjoyable than I initially expected, especially since I had never lived alone before. It’s remarkable how quickly a place can feel like a home away from home!
Click here to check out other posts in my Holly Goes Abroad series!
Have you ever lived in a dorm? Did you have your own room or share it with a roommate (or two)? Let me know in the comments section below!