The first question my family, and I’m sure many of your own families asked was, “What college do you want to go to?” It was intimidating to share my opinions and desires, but the questions which came after committing were a bit more flustering to converse about—
“Are the dorms co-ed?”
“Do they separate the floors by gender?”
“Please tell me there are at least separate bathrooms!”
As one of only two girls in my family’s generation, I felt prepared to live in Louis Redding Hall, the co-ed, traditional Honors dorm for freshmen students. Co-ed living is a normal college experience across campuses and I was excited to live with people of all genders this fall. Yet, I stumbled into an entirely different experience then expected during move-in week. Section 2A of Redding: all female students, Munson Fellow, and Resident Assistant.
Growing up living with smelly socks, food left out everywhere by my brother, and wrestling in the basement, I knew living with girls was going to be a change for me. The idea of living with a roommate was still alien to me. I was overwhelmed going to the first floor meeting with a bunch of girls who were strangers to me. We started off with the classic icebreakers, but then, I was shocked to find us having genuine conversations immediately about self-care, floor bonding nights, and to not leave hair in the shower (a must!). Within the first week, I began to see all the wonderful things that came with living in an all-girls section: it always smells nice, having an extra bathroom, and walking in the hall in your bathrobe with no awkward passing of a man. More than that, I was able to envision myself engaging with my floor harmoniously.
At the second floor meeting, we got to know each other better while creating a banner for our floor. A real girl power moment. We created a groovy visual representation of our community and learned more about each other during the process. The connections we made with each other that night were instantaneous. Now, our lounge is always populated by a few or more girls; collaborating on schoolwork, eating, chatting, and constantly being an inclusive space for everyone.
From watching Legally Blonde in the lounge to taking a field trip to Pencader, the residents of Section 2A are always having spontaneous hangouts with each other. Going into college, I never imagined that I would have multiple friends that I would make in my hall. There are so many opportunities here at the University of Delaware to make new friends from classes, sports, and RSOs. But I encourage you to keep connecting with those living on your floor, they might surprise you. I am so fortunate to live with such a kindhearted, fun group of girls who will have a place in my heart forever.