Prefrosh Preview: The four freshmen dorms
Your freshman experience at Georgetown depends heavily on which of the four freshman dorms you find yourself in, and, along with your school within the University, which dorm you’re living in will dominate much of the banal conversations you’ll have during NSO. The freshmen dorms are where you’ll likely make your first friends and first start to feel at home on the Hilltop.
But it’s important to remember that, while your dorm determines where you end up living, it doesn’t determine how you end up living. Things you can control, like who your friends are, what groups you join, and what you study, have a much larger impact on how your first year at Georgetown goes than the fact that you’re doomed to live in an assigned room for that entire year.
Each dorm has its own ups and downs, but, as far as what the actual rooms are like, the dorms are not all that different. Every freshman shares his or her room with one roommate and has a reasonable amount of space, along with a twin-size bed, desk, and closet area. Some dorms offer some special perks like sinks or bathrooms, but, for the most part, the rooms are all very similar.
Don’t expect to find out where you’ll be living for a while, though. Housing guards your room assignments till “early” August .
Georgetown’s largest freshmen dorm is also the one that can be described as the most “typical” college dorm. New South has very long, branching hallways and floors packed with loads of freshmen. Its large size and population lends itself to being the most raucous of the dorms. Denizens of “Zoo South” should expect loud Friday and Saturday (and sometimes Thursday) nights. Fortunately, New South is very close to Lauinger Library, so it’s not difficult to escape any noise.
Floors on New South are known for lacking a closeness found in some of the other freshmen dorms, and the common rooms are used almost exclusively for sobering up after a night out or getting sexiled by your roommate. If you live in New South, you’ll probably go the entire year without meeting everyone on your floor.
New South boasts the largest rooms a freshman can have, making them a decent place for hosting pregames. Your freshman year isn’t complete until you end up at a New South clown car pregame that ends up getting obscenely loud. Rooms also come equipped with a sink.
Village C West (and maybe East)
VCW is the homiest of the dorms. VCW’s floors have one short hallway lined with rooms, and each room is very small. Between the beds, desks, and armoire things, there’s very little floor space in a VCW room. This is made up for by the fact that VCW rooms have their own bathrooms. That means no communal bathrooms if you live here.
VCW is also in a great spot on campus. Its central location makes getting to Leo’s dining hall or Lau library (and just about everywhere else) very convenient.
A few freshmen may end up living very close in Village C East (it’s right across the patio), depending on how many freshmen matriculate. Think of VCE as VCW’s underachieving sibling. The rooms here also have personal bathrooms, but are even smaller than their VCW counterparts. Apparently, the rooms also have a chance to flood during heavy rains. Fun.
Having never actually set foot in Harbin, Vox can only give a description based on what I’ve heard about it.
Each Harbin floor is split up into separate “clusters,” with several rooms apiece. Freshmen in Harbin tend to get very close to their nearest neighbors in these clusters, and Harbin typically has very strong floor communities. Floor friends from Harbin have a tendency to stay friends for most of their time at Georgetown.
Harbin rooms are nearly as large as New South rooms. Additionally, rooms facing the nearby Harbin Field will have a comfortable view of all the home football games, when Georgetown’s football team usually gets spanked.
Last (and probably least) is the infamous Darnall. Located all the way at the north edge of campus, Darnall Hall is known for being inconveniently far away from everything in Georgetown aside from the Leavey Center and the science buildings. People actually say “I’m sorry” to you when you tell them you live in Darnall. One of Vox‘s (highly insensitive) friends actually referred to Darnall as being over in “the projects.”
The extra walking really isn’t so bad though. It’s just an extra five minutes of walking, compared to the other freshmen dorms. And there’s a lot that makes Darnall a nice place to live. Rooms are mid-sized and comfortable. Most important, freshmen floor bonding is even stronger here than in Harbin, and the spacious, comfortable common rooms amplify that.
Photo: NCinDC via Flickr