For Incoming Freshmen: Potluck vs. Pals

Hello new Hoosiers! First of all, let me welcome you to the family! You've made a great decision!

I'm a moderator for the new IU Facebook group for admitted students and many of you have asked about what to do when it comes to choosing a roommate. Should I go random or room with a friend? Well, I can tell you from my personal experience that it's great to go with a PAL


As a senior in high school, I knew I didn't want to go random with a roommate. I didn't want to leave it to chance. I'm quite a shy and reserved person so opening myself up to people and starting conversations has never been a strength of mine. I'm also not much of a partier and take my studies very serously. That's why I'm here, after all!

Many of my close friends decided to go off to different colleges so I thought I'd reached a dead end. However, I decided to room with a girl from my high school who I was an acquaintance with but didn't know all that well. We had lots of mutual friends but both deicded it would be a good idea to live together as opposed to going random with a roommate. 

Brenny and I were really similar so rooming together was never a hassle. The timing of our classes wasn't always ideal - (I usually opted for earlier classes whereas Brenny liked later classes) - but that was fairly simple for both of us to work around. Both of us took the same Psychology class with Professor Summers (which I highly suggest you take!!), and we'd come back to the room and watch a fair share of YouTube videos, including the latest Jenna Marbles video. It became a routine that we did laundry Friday night after treating ourselves to Red Mango. We also impulsively decided to go to the movie theater and see Beauty and the Beast in 3D. Why not, right? 

Eventually, Brenny joined a sorority and we didn't hang out as much as we did at the beginning of the year. But the key was that we got along really well. It's normal to spend less time with your roommate as both of you start participating in different activities and events, but there's no reason both of you can't stay in touch!

I wouldn't recommend rooming with one of your best friends. As much as you love them, you'll be spending the majority of your time with them and you won't feel as obligated to meet new people.

If you're really outgoing and don't have any reservations about going potluck, by all means, go potluck! But if you consider yourself someone who's quite shy, I opt for rooming with an acquaintance. If you don't know anyone from your high school going to IU, try looking at different Living-Learning Communities, or LLCs. That way, you're bound to have something in common with your roommate!

Until next time, 


About The Author
Gillian WilsonStudent Blogger

Hello all!

My name is Gillian Wilson and I plan to graduate in May 2015! I'm double majoring in International Studies, with concentrations in Western Europe and International Communication and Journalism, with a specialization in Global Journalism. 

I'm currently secretary of IU's Online News Association and was a Welcome Week assistant for both my sophomore and junior years. I also served on Teter Quad's Board of Programmers as a freshman. I'm very focused on my studies, but I enjoy venturing out to 4th Street restaurants and shopping on Kirkwood! 

Join me as I share my university exprience with you! I'll be studying abroad in Canterbury, England, during the spring semester, so make sure you come back to read about my adventures abroad!