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The Pitt News

The University of Pittsburgh's Daily Student Newspaper

The Pitt News

The University of Pittsburgh's Daily Student Newspaper

The Pitt News

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Pamela Smith, managing editor.
Column | In the blink of an eye, in the click of a shutter
By Pamela Smith, Managing Editor • April 20, 2024
Fresh Perspective | Final Farewell
By Julia Smeltzer, Digital Manager • April 19, 2024

Join our newsletter

Get Pitt and Oakland news in your inbox, three times a week.

Pamela Smith, managing editor.
Column | In the blink of an eye, in the click of a shutter
By Pamela Smith, Managing Editor • April 20, 2024
Fresh Perspective | Final Farewell
By Julia Smeltzer, Digital Manager • April 19, 2024

Students reflect on first-year dorm experiences

Students moving into Litchfield Towers, the largest cluster of dorms on Pitts main campus, ahead of the new academic year during Aug. 2022.
TPN File Photo
Students moving into Litchfield Towers, the largest cluster of dorms on Pitt’s main campus, ahead of the new academic year during Aug. 2022.

As their first semester of college comes to a close, first-year students are reflecting on their dorm experiences and deciding if they chose the right place to live.

Bella Burrell, a first-year bioengineering major who lives in a Holland single with a private bathroom, is overall happy with the choice she made when picking a dorm. 

“I love the community in Holland,” Burrell said. “It’s very welcoming and it feels like I am friends with everybody. [But] whenever you put the radiators on, it smells like burnt hair.”

Although living on-campus isn’t required for first-year students, many choose to opt into the guaranteed housing for at least their first year. Students rank their choices out of seven different buildings, including the Litchfield Towers, Holland Hall and Sutherland Hall.

Additionally, Burrell said she dislikes how dorms in Holland are different sizes and come with different features. 

“The people in the dorm next to me have a double that is the size of a mansion and walk-in closets,” Burrell said. “That would be nice.” 

First-year nursing major Zoe Brennan agreed with Burrell’s feelings on the difference in room sizes. 

“My mom had to look up the dimensions of my room, which was pretty cool of her but it was really hard to figure out,” Brennan said. 

Brennan put Holland as her fourth-choice dorm since her old neighbor lived in Holland and liked the experience, but Brennan feels like the main drawback for her are the bathrooms.

“He’s also a boy, and I feel like they aren’t as disgusted by Holland’s bathroom,” Brennan said. “The water pressure is very low. It almost feels like the showers are just a cloud drizzling rain.”

Additionally, every floor in Holland has a communal bathtub for students to use, but Brennan said no one on her floor has ever gone near it.

“Our floor made an agreement that no one would use the communal bathtub,” Brennan said. “No one wants to see that.”

Brennan put Towers as her first choice on her housing form and enjoys visiting her friends who live there. 

“Although Holland has the communal lounge, I like Towers a lot better,” Brennan said.

Burrell disagrees with this sentiment, as she said she finds the Towers dark, small, cramped and overall “resembling hell.”

While first-year biology major Cassandra Scripkunas agrees that Towers dorms are small, she said she thinks Tower B is the best dorm on campus. 

“Tower B was my top choice dorm,” Scripkunas said. “I roomed with someone from high school because we were the only people going to Pitt and we have been getting along great. It was a great choice.”

Despite the proximity of rooms in Towers, Scripkunas would like to see more lounges for residents to hang out in.

“While the closet space is nice, I also wish the Towers had more lounges. There are only two in the entire building, and the seats are always taken,” Scripkunas said. 

While Scripkunas said she dislikes that the floors in Towers are not coed, she is grateful to have control over the air conditioner in her room, which isn’t always the case, even for dorms with AC. 

“We can put the air conditioner on low, medium and high,” Scripkunas said. “It can also be adjusted to any temperature.”

First-year studio arts major Ashley McClain also said she appreciates that Sutherland is one of the buildings that has air conditioning. 

“I like how I can control the temperature for Sutherland and do not mind the hill, but hate how long it takes to walk up there,” McClain said. 

McClain also said she likes her bathroom, although it can be hard to keep clean. Students in a Sutherland suite are in charge of cleaning their own bathrooms, which she said can be hard to keep organized among roommates. 

“This morning, the ceiling broke and folded in our bathroom,” McClain said. “Not really Sutherland’s fault, but still annoying. No one in my dorm cleans the bathroom so I mostly have to do it.”

Although McClain said she dislikes having to clean the private bathroom. She added that she likes how close Sutherland is to the Perch. 

“I like the Perch here,” McClain said. “And the elevators. The elevators are really nice. If the Perch had slightly better food, Sutherland East would be a really good dorm to live in.”

About the Contributor
Emma Hannan, Staff Writer