The Random Roommate Shuffle


Savana Freyman, Student Life Editor

The anxiety that stems from college roommate selection affects many students who plan on living on campus during their freshmen year of college.

Many universities have you fill out a detailed questionnaire before they place you in a room. They ask your likes, dislikes, ethnicity, habits, sleeping patterns, and might as well include shoe size. Then universities enter all the data in a computer, use complicated algorithms to find the closest mathematical matches, and pick your roommate’s name out of a hat. One of the greatest and most common fears surrounding living on campus is selecting a roommate. The random shuffle that some colleges use leaves students with an uneasy feeling, because there is a chance polar opposite students will be paired together.

For some future college students, getting a random room assignment is a part of the college experience that they don’t want to miss out on.

“I plan on going to the University of Florida. I’m doing the random selection. I think it’s better to room with someone you don’t know because it adds to the college experience and otherwise college is just an extension of high school, and it is important to branch out and meet new people,” Sydney Sokolsky, senior, said.

However, for some students, the thought of a totally random roommate is a concern, but they also don’t want to room with someone they knew from high school. Luckily, there is a website that helps future college students across the nation test their compatibility and help ease the anxiety of living with a stranger.

The website is called Roomsurf and it is a lot like online dating. Students take a through survey and answer the questions to the best of their ability. The students then take the survey a second time answering the way they want their roommate to answer the questions. The questions range from personal hygiene, to study habits, to music preference, to the likelihood of having overnight guests. Then students are given the results based on the percentage of compatibility. It does a phenomenal job of matching people up who plan on attending the same universities and have the same lifestyles.

Not all students find the random roommate or compatible roommate path very appealing. Many students are really excited about going to school with their best friends, because what’s better than living miles away from home with your bestie?

“I’m going to UNF in Jacksonville, and I’m rooming with my best friend Emily Sehres. I’ve heard things about friendships being ruined by rooming together in college, but Emily and I know each other really well, so I think we’ll definitely stay friends. I wanted to room with someone I knew so that we could feel comfortable sharing things like clothes and food,” Sarah Holt, senior, said.

When choosing a living situation, students should pick the style that suits their personality best. Whatever living situation college brings, it`s bound to bring memories that will last a lifetime.