So as an incoming VSA, I accidentally already blogged about my freshman housing experience… oops! It is actually my first blog post on this website, and you can check it out here. I talked mostly about the retreat we had at the beginning of the year, the students I lived with, and how I’m still living with my BK4’ers. No need to repeat those in another blog, but definitely check out the older blog since the info is still current!
However, I want to talk about the particular style of room that I lived in. Birnkrant is a pretty typical dorm-style arrangement, with a few exceptions. There are 8 floors of awesomeness, and each floor has a wing for guys and girls. Shoutout to Zach and Sam who lived on 3rd and 5th Birnkrant respectively, the same year that I lived on 4th! Anyway, each floor has its own laundry room, study room (we called it the Fishbowl because it is surrounded by thick glass), and two bathrooms. Most of the rooms in the dorm are “doubles,” meaning that two people share one room, which comes with two desks, dressers, beds and a microwave. However, I lived in a triple last year, which is probably one of the more unique freshman housing experiences on campus.
When I first read about the Birnkrant triples back when I creeped College Confidential daily, it didn’t sound like something I wanted. I guess my first thought was that I would be sharing a normal room with three girls instead of two, and that didn’t sound like any fun. Not true at all: the Birnkrant triples are a completely different story. Instead, we actually got TWO double-sized rooms, but with three people living in it. However, take heed– some colleges actually DO have triples like this where they squeeze three people in a double-sized room. But in Birnkrant, the triples mean you get 1.5 times the space of a double.
So how exactly does the room lay out? Basically, one room is designated as a “bedroom” and one was more of a “social/activity room”. Our bedroom just had all of our dressers and beds in it, along with the closets. Then our other room had the desks and microwaves. Yes, we had two microwaves. I have no idea why, because when you tried using both at once, the power would fail and we would have to plug them back in again. But anyway, our social room had a TON of space in it. We ended up putting in an entire futon that could fold down into a bed, as well as a drumset, guitars and a record player. And we still had room to line up our three longboards on the wall! In all, it was a great place to hang out with our friends, and our room instantly became the spot that everyone would come to when they were bored. There was a constant supply of junk food and random unclaimed objects from our floormates in that room. As for the bedroom, we decided to maintain a bit of privacy by mounting a curtain in between the two rooms. Since the rooms were only separated by an archway, this made it easier to sleep early if my roommates were still working in the other room. The cool thing about having all the beds in one room was that every night kinda felt like a sleepover.
Though living with two other roommates sounds a little scary, I have never had any issues with it, since we all have so much personal space. If you are worried about requesting a Birnkrant triple, I would come check one out (if you can), since you will see the benefits of it firsthand. But I would definitely consider it, since you will have the most space and place to hang out! I loved my experience in the triple-style, and I was so spoiled by it that it was kinda hard to transition to a double-sized room this year with only one roommate!
And just as an awesome side note, we have had a VSA from the fourth floor of Birnkrant for the last four years (me, Radhika, Steve and Lydia)! Clearly there’s some magical VSA power coming from that floor.