As the days tick down toward the end of the academic year, a different activity is ramping up! That’s right, it’s the time where the Student Life and Admissions teams begin working together to match students with their future roommates.
Despite it being incredibly exciting, we know that there is a lot of anxiety associated with leaving home and living with someone you don’t know, so we thought it would be helpful to open up the lines of communication and explain just how much effort goes into finding that “right” roommate at Kents Hill School.
Erica Chute, Dean of Community Life says, “We put together a strong, student-focused team of people and they take time to look at each student individually. The team considers students’ habits and interests and then matches them with somebody who has similar ones. Admissions is always a large part of this effort as they have such valuable input. Usually, they have met the students and their families already and know more about their backgrounds and individual stories.”
She continues, “We also talk about all of the valuable information we gather from the surveys and strive to make the best choice for each student so they can be comfortable and have the best residential experience. Oftentimes the roommates that we match up choose to stay together for multiple years. It's more common than not.”
To illustrate this point, we have provided some (but not all) of the areas of interest/questions we ask new students to match them with their ideal housing option:
- How would you describe yourself (very shy, moderately shy, neutral, moderately outgoing, very outgoing, other)
- I am a neat person (rated 1-7 from strongly disagree to strongly agree)
- I would like to have friends visit my room (rated 1-7 from never to regularly)
- I prefer a quiet living area (rated 1-7 from strongly disagree to strongly agree)
- What temperature do you prefer to sleep in? (rated 1-7 from really cold to really warm)
- I am willing to share appliances, electronics, food, etc. with my roommate. (rated 1-7 from strongly disagree to strongly agree)
- Would you describe yourself as an early riser or night owl?
- Are you a heavy or light sleeper?
- How do you generally like to spend your time? (provided with a list of activity checkboxes)
- What types of music do you listen to? (provided with a list of genres)
- How often do you play video/computer games? (provided with a range of options)
- What are your top concerns about the habits/activities of your future roommate?
- How would you describe yourself in three words to a potential roommate?
- To which gender identity do you most identify?
- What kinds of activities or interests do you have outside of academics?
In total, we ask around twenty qualifying questions alongside ones aimed at finding the right advisor match in the survey and, in conjunction with personal insights from those who know you best initially (generally the Admissions team), make a solid recommendation.
Alison Lincoln-Rich, Dean of Enrollment Management and Director of Financial Aid explains, “Our team uses the information gathered from our interviews with students and their families to help with the roommate selection process. We know our new students the best and partner with Erica Chute to thoughtfully select roommates that we think will grow and flourish together.”
We understand that striking out on your own can be scary, but know that an entire community has your back and there is a strong possibility that you will meet a great friend while living in the dorms. Plus! Dorm living is the perfect way to foster independence and friendship in advance of your college or postgraduate life.