Sunday I went to visit my sister at her college.  When I got to her suite she calmly told me to beware of their “cockroach problem,” as I looked down at the floor and let out a slight scream, my jaw opened wide and my eyes popped. There were at least 10 cockroaches on the floor. She laughed and picked one up, it’s plasticky sheen shined in the harsh dorm overhead lights—they were all fake. I asked to take one; I couldn’t wait get back to my apartment to prank my roommates. And this I did. When I got back I placed it in my bedroom and pretended to be frightened when I “found” it. They all screamed and immediately ran away when I frantically pointed it out; it was priceless.

Though Conn is a residential college, that doesn’t mean that you need to live in a dorm all four years. You can, if you choose, live in apartment-style housing like me and my friends. There’s a lottery system and other ways in which you and a group of friends can get one of these alternative housing options. I was traveling in Budapest during my junior semester abroad when I found out that, through the lottery system, my friends and I got assigned to a great apartment our senior year. Living across Mohegan Avenue, the part of campus that houses the athletic center and apartments, has been a helpful step in getting used to the pending reality of my post-graduation life. Because I’m a step further from living in a dorm it feels as if my adulthood is being molded one phase at a time.

I live with four of my friends, and there is nothing like getting home after a tiring day and being able to cook dinner, laugh and relax in our own space. We aren’t yet living in a local town or community on our own, but there is still a glorious sense of freedom. Within our already tight-knit community exists many wonderfully smaller ones. The apartments on River Ridge Road as well as the entire Village (the name for the area on campus where all of the apartments are located) are both examples of some of these mini communities. In fact, a fun community event that took place in the Village this Halloween was trick or treating for faculty, staff and neighborhood kids. The school provides candy for each apartment who wants to participate, and we got to supply a fun little neighborhood activity for kids.
Each living situation at Conn offers something unique, and I’ve loved the variety of places that I’ve lived during my time here. Senior year offers a lot of time to reflect on how college has helped to encourage and foster my growth into an adult. Living in an apartment as a senior has only further solidified the reality that dorm life is no longer, yet it’s been great to ease into that transition slowly.