Good and Bad of Living in Campus


For simplicity of calculation, this article assumes local currency RM3.50 equals to USD1 as it is the middle between old exchange roughly RM3=USD1 and the newer exchange roughly RM4=USD1.

Just like the previous semesters, I get to live in campus dormitory again. Do you know that we are actually getting force to live in the campus? No, not forced by university, but forced by environment surrounding us the students. University has never force students to stay inside, plus they even provide support with a special team which would go to the student's house if it gets flooded for example. But, the environment has force us to just stay inside, particularly because the distance between classes and the very high house renting prices. Even we're living in campus, there's good and bad side of living in here, let's look at the good first because we should always start with positive thing!

Good

1. Near to classes
The distance between the dormitory rooms to the class is nearer than rent houses outside of campus. Though this would mean no excuse to be late, it's good as you could still go back to room in between classes.

2. Easy to participate in activities
A lot of activities are carried out in the university compound, when you live in the dormitory rooms, it will be a lot easier to participate in the activities organized by anyone in the university.

3. Easy to get to anywhere
You could just walk to anywhere you want, you don't feel tired from walking as it is not far. Compared to living outside, you need to walk for a very long and you will be half-dead tired by the time you arrived to the place you're going.

4. Free medical checks and medicine
This might not available in all universities, but all public universities are required to have this for their students. In my case, they have a dedicated medical building with complete basic treatment. No matter it's a cold, fever, or up to injuries from activities, or vaccination, it's free for students. They have their own ambulance in case something serious happened and needs further treatment in proper hospital.

5. Recreational parks available
In our case, we have a recreational park in university compound. It has a nice lake and jogging tracks, with shades of trees and a few small benches.

6. Free sports facility available
For students who really take care of their health, there's free to use gymnasium hall, race track, soccer field, badminton court, tennis court, and others.

Bad

1. No WiFi
While there are some university that has good WiFi coverage, either free or paid, in my case there's only one WiFi spot in the whole dormitory buildings of roughly 120 rooms and covering all 360 students. At my room, we could not get the coverage at all and hence the point "No WiFi". We tried going to the hotspot itself and could only get 8kbps (1KB/s). In the end, we had to subscribe to our own mobile data which is obviously expensive with too little quota.

2. Expensive (or acceptable) cafes
For me, the foods are expensive, though people who actually originated from cities would say the prices are acceptable. A plate of rice with one piece of chicken and some savoury priced at RM4.00 (USD 1.14) which is much higher than what it's priced at cafes near to my home, RM2.50 (USD 0.71) but lower than what it's usually priced in cities, like one of my friends say it is sold at price of RM6.00 (USD 1.71) in a city.

3. Limited items sold
There are many shops in the university compound, but the items being sold are limited. When something we need is out-of-stock, we need to wait next month to get it, or go to shops outside the university, which gets in next point...

4. Expensive transport
We need transport to get to shops outside of university when things are not available there, but the transport is very expensive. The taxi will charge for the whole car no matter how many of people is boarding the taxi. When you're alone, you will still pay the price for 5 people. To get to the nearest shop complex, you'll be charged RM10 (USD 2.86) per taxi no matter you're alone or there's 5 of you.

5. Not allowed to work part-time
Students who actually get dormitory is because they can't afford to rent house outside university, hence you can't work part-time as they think you will afford to rent if you actually work and chase you out from dormitory, but they never realized the monthly part-time salary is usually only half from monthly rent. This leaves students coming from poor or medium family like me to fully depending on the small amount of study loan that we get to continue our life in the university, as parents could not afford to support us as they're having financial difficulties themselves.

6. Unstable electricity & lazy technicians
This is quite a problem when you're living in dormitory rooms. Each rooms consists of three students and six electric sockets. This means each student only has two sockets to be used. Since the whole floor where I live were majority students in computer science, we uses electrics a lot. We had to use divider sockets to allow more electric appliances to be plugged into the only two sockets. Sometimes, something went wrong somewhere and tripped the main circuit. When this happened, we need to wait at least six hours and up to two days for the lazy in-charge technician to get to the power box and restore it for the whole floor.

I myself have 6 devices connected to my two power sockets: drinking water heater, automatic electric mosquito repellent (24/7), laptop, printer, 2-port USB adapter to charge two phones and 4-port USB adapter (24/7) to power two USB data hubs (7-port USB 3.0 hub for laptop & 4-port USB 2.0 hub for one of my phones which connected via OTG), USB night lamp and keyboard lights since roommates turn off light early at night and I can't type in the dark. One of my roommates has another 6 devices connected to their two power sockets including a complete computer with LCD screen. There's someone on the floor who even has 10 plugs connected to 2 sockets as their computer use separate power supply for main CPU and for additional graphic cards, and another 4 LCD screens to make it 4K resolution, among other basic devices like phone chargers etc. When they're not playing games, they do programming assignment on 1 screen while watching game live in Twitch in another screen, and playing anime music videos off YouTube in 1 screen and chatting with gaming friends in the last screen.

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