Never fart again.
Just kidding! Mostly.
Chances are this is your first time living with someone, or at least living with someone in a dorm. Here are a few tips on getting along with your roommate:
- Have Clear Communication
- It’s extremely important to make sure you and your roommate are on the same terms. MSU fosters a community that encourages and appreciates international education, and your roommate will probably be thrilled to get to know you! But keep in mind that even if English is your first language, cultural differences can lead to miscommunication. Just be clear with your roommate about this, and try to be a good listener as well.
- Establish Schedules
- Pick a place in your dorm to keep your schedules, this way you’ll know what time to expect your roommate back, and vice versa. One thing to establish straight away is a bathroom schedule. If you take ages in the shower, then you want to make sure that you have enough time to get ready for class — but also that you give your roommate/suite-mate plenty of time as well. This will change if you have a community styled shower.
- Invite them Out
- Bonding time with your roommate can make the whole experience wildly better! Go to Sparticipation together, or grab a bite to eat at the dining hall. You shouldn’t expect to spend all your free time together, but reaching out to them and showing that you’re keen to be friends could go a long way to smooth things over.
- Share Your Culture
- Chances are, your roommate is going to be super excited to have an international student as their roommate! Share with them what home is like, what you want to get out of your time in the States, and they might be able to help you! Who knows, maybe they’ll visit you at home on their break.
- Know Your Limits
- While you want to get along with your roommate, they should respect your boundaries just as you respect theirs. Speaking about your levels of comfort before a situation arises is the best method of keeping everyone in your dorm happy. Things to talk about include if guests should be allowed to stay overnight, what time “quiet hours” should start, and anything else you’re concerned about.
At the end of the day, you and your roommate don’t have to be best friends, you just have to respect each other and each other’s space. If you are really having a hard time with your roommate, reach out to our office and we’ll talk to you about your options.
Interested in learning more about our programs and exchanges? Take a look at our website, americansemester.msu.edu, where you can find a variety of resources.