Find Your Perfect School
Living on campus is a dream for many incoming students. Usually, it is the first time a college freshman is “away from the nest”. And, let’s face it, as parents, we want to send our children off to a safe, clean, and comfortable housing situation. A home away from home.
A dorm, short for dormitory, is a place where a student can relax after a long day attending classes – after all, this is where students will live. The fact is, nobody could ever relax or study efficiently in an uncomfortable dorm room.
Could a student sleep with all the noise going through the thin walls? No. Could they rest easy in the dirtiest of dorms? Definitely, not. Some university dorms are so small that a student can hear the noise and smell odors coming from outside of their room – yuck!
True enough, when it comes to choosing a college or university, the best college dorm life may not be the first thing that comes to mind.
Students usually think about the most critical concerns, such as the reputation of the school, the programs they offer, the estimated costs, and of course, the quality of academics. Nevertheless, come to think about it, dorms are similar to a college classroom – making it a vital factor to consider.
Students and parents can rely on this thorough list of some of the best comfortable dorms at institutions across America. However, some of the estimated yearly housing costs indicated may not include extras like meal plans while living on campus. They are, of course, subject to vary based on tuition hikes at the institution – but we listed the current prices of each.
Let us help you find the best college dorms that fit your educational requirements for starting a new career, a job promotion, or simply meeting your personal goals. Our researchers at PremiumSchools.org utilize these indicators of excellent academic standards to locate exceptional dorms designed with the student in mind.
The following schools are listed in random order. As every school displays its unique qualities and strengths, you should search our list based on your needs and career aspirations.
The following factors were considered:
- Offers on-campus or hybrid classes for flexible or convenient attendance without compromising hands-on training,
- Exhibits rigorous, yet engaging and innovative training in coursework that takes into account the readiness of students to take the next step to their budding career, all while providing a comfortable dorm experience,
- Taught by outstanding faculty consisting of experts in their fields,
- Held in high esteem among academic agencies, industry organizations, and journalistic resources,
- Displays stellar reviews and feedback from school alumni and students,
- Offers a convenient application process,
- Provides a safe learning environment with exceptional facilities and dormitories,
- Provides exceptional Student Career Centers, Resource Departments, and easy-to-use Learning Management Systems, where applicable,
- Permits a wide range of scholarships, grants, and other financial support programs for eligible students,
- Ensures the proper Accreditation in accordance with academic standards in all fields.
If you would like to learn more about our selection process, feel free to see our Methodology page!
15 BEST COLLEGES WITH AMAZING DORM LIFE
Boston University is one of the most respected universities in the world. They are also one of the most dominant institutions in a city full of it.
Founded in 1838, BU is an essential aspect of Boston’s culture and economy, serving as one of the city’s top employers. BU is famous for its excellence in education, engineering, medical, and business, particularly economics, as a top-tier research institution. With over 33,000 students in a densely packed, fast-paced urban environment, BU has prioritized student housing with impressive outcomes.
The ancient Bunker Hill Monument, the gilded dome of the State House, the Grand Harbor Islands, and the planes descending and ascending from the distant airport are all visible from the 26th floor of Boston’s high-rise. Sailboats and rowing shells glide gently along the Charles River below.
Despite the million-dollar view, it is not a four-star hotel penthouse apartment or a Back Bay luxury condominium. It is the standard dorm room of Boston University, possibly the most lavish residence hall in the city’s history. The students there call it their Skyview from the center of their “BUniverse.” Upon entering the building, people can see tags of the sort.
Of course, there is no martini bar because most of the population is under 21. Students will, however, have access to a media area with a plasma TV. They can freely use these amenities for watching movies and playing video games, in addition to the panoramic view of the city skyline.
Other features include soundproof piano rooms so students can practice without bothering those studying in the 24-hour reading room. It also has luxurious adjustable couches appropriate for a first-class airport lounge. The laundry facility, which has washers and dryers that notify students by computer, looks out over the athletic field and stadium.
Students and parents should expect to pay a premium for all of these excellent advantages.
Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, has long strived to offer its students the ideal possible learning environment. Traditional and modern buildings make up WU’s South 40 Residential Colleges.
The majority of the rooms in modern structures are double rooms, with a few triples and single rooms thrown in for good measure. In newer buildings, most rooms are two double rooms connected by a bathroom. On each floor, students can choose between traditional structures, single, double, and triple rooms.
Students at Washington University have a reputation for keeping their dorms immaculate. A checklist and cleaning plan for each residential building is available on their website. Bathrooms are scored every day or every other day, with vents, ledges, and lights cleaned once a week. Every month, shower curtains are also replaced or cleaned.
Since the Covid-19 pandemic, Washington University has converted their Moonrise Hotel and Quadrangle Apartments into student housing to maintain social isolation. There is a boost in the WU’s clean reputation in this building, with weekly room cleaning and complimentary laundry service for all students.
Dorm prices at Washington University
Warren Wilson College, near Asheville, North Carolina, is a small liberal arts college dedicated to long-term educational and practice practices. With a campus surrounded by mountains, forests, and farms, WWC students grow most of their food, study their fields, participate in sports and other activities, and hike in the hundreds of acres around campus.
Warren Wilson College students are a close-knit bunch who commit themselves to their school. They have over 80 separate student work teams supporting every aspect of campus operations.
Warren Wilson College is known for its EcoDorm, gorgeous location, active school life, and environmental ideals. WWC’s EcoDorm is the first building on a college campus to get LEED Platinum certification in the Existing Buildings (EB) category. Under the LEED system, platinum certification is the highest grade a building can receive, the rating the school received.
One of EcoDorm’s most distinctive features is its 10,000-gallon railroad tanker car, which recovers rainwater utilized to flush toilets and nourish the dorm’s permaculture landscaping. The EcoDorm also offers solar-powered water heaters, radiant floor heating, and high-efficiency boilers.
Housing and food cost for Warren Wilson College
MIT is one of the leading STEM research colleges in the world. They are renowned for their breakthroughs and innovations in defense and oceanography to artificial intelligence and open-source programming. MIT is also known for its vibrant student life, which is concentrated almost entirely on campus – all undergraduate students are given accommodation for their four years of study.
MIT is the dream school of thousands of students. It is one of the institutions with the greatest dorms, with a highly competitive, highly motivated campus culture centered around 150-year-old traditions, nerdy interests, and a famed pranking culture. Not to mention, MIT is famous for being the party dorm in the world.
Simmons Hall, designed by famous architect Steven Holl and completed in 2002, is one of the most recognizable buildings at an outstanding university. Simmons, dubbed “The Sponge,” was inspired by the simple sea sponge and has earned multiple architectural honors for its uniqueness and beauty, as well as being selected “Eyesore of the Month.”
Simmons’ culture is famous for its innovation and collegiality; the university has its constitution and governmental system, referred to as “lounge” style. Three hundred forty undergraduates can live in the hall.
The hall uses natural ventilation provided through 6,000 movable windows with solar shading.
Natural ventilation receives support from low-energy ventilation and mechanical dehumidification design. This combination allows the students to use the dormitory all year without requiring air conditioning. Moreover, the building’s concrete walls also contribute to the tenants’ comfort.
The thermal lag of exposed interior concrete allows it to retain cooler temperatures during the day by utilizing nocturnal ventilation and the thermal lag of the concrete.
Occasionally, there is a drag of obnoxious architectural enthusiasts, and the Simmons pool, which is known for its pranks, fills up with rubber ducks on its own. It is one of the most fantastic college dorms one will ever see.
Housing rates for Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The University of Houston consists of four universities since it is a flagship of the University of Houston System. With world-renowned STEM research programs in fields including superconductors, space exploration, artificial intelligence, and biomedical engineering, UH has been a vital element of Houston’s expansion over the twentieth century. UH is a premier urban research institution with an annual economic footprint of more than $3 billion and over 24,000 employees.
University Lofts, formerly known as Calhoun Lofts, at the University of Houston is an example of how Texas likes to do big things. These spacious loft-style dorms, one of the newer facilities on campus, have 10-foot-high ceilings, exposed concrete ceilings and floors for an urban vibe, granite countertops, and a refrigerator, stove, and microwave. A movie room, gym rooms, a store, a pool table, and two rooftop patios are available to tenants of the building.
Housing Rate Sheet for University of Houston
The University of Texas at Austin, a leading US public research university, is consistently recognized as a Public Ivy and the premier institution in the Southwest. UT Austin, Texas’s state capital and cultural heart, is also one of the largest universities in the country based on student population, resulting in high demand for accommodation.
The Austin area is widely referred to as one of the most fantastic places in the United States, owing to the thriving music and art cultures that have sprung up around UT. Moreover, students can live in almost any style they can envision.
Students at the University of Texas at Austin’s Callaway House do not have to worry about things like cleaning or making the bed. There is daily housekeeping in this opulent dorm.
Each unit offers a kitchenette with stainless steel appliances and granite countertops, hardwood floors, and privacy barriers in shared rooms and is available in single or double rooms. A movie room with four 60-inch screens, a 24-hour fitness facility, and a vast outdoor pool with a spa are among the amenities.
Stanford is a hybrid of MIT and Harvard in that it values students with excellent technical skills and strong leadership qualities. Stanford promotes STEM and appreciates individuals with a wide range of academic interests. Students can see the admission process as evidence of their standards, which gives more weight to the numerous short essays featured in the supplement.
Stanford University’s Residential and Dining Enterprises and students collaborated to create among the cleanest and greenest dorms in the country.
An article described the university’s sustainable cleaning solution. According to the report, a machine attaches to taps and produces stable aqueous ozone using electricity (SAO). This “engineered water” has proven to be as effective as traditional chemicals while still being environmentally friendly. Residents and custodians believed their space was equally as clean utilizing SAO.
Upon installation, the “Green Cleaning” system was the only one at any university on the West Coast. The California Higher Education Sustainability Conference awarded the program a best practice award. Mirrielees House and Wilbur Hall residents were among the first to use SAO from their laundry rooms, saving them time and money while improving the efficiency of their dorm room cleaning operations. Green cleaning will be implemented in all schoolhouses by 2024, according to the Residential and Dining Enterprises.
Moreover, the Mirrielees House gives students a chance to self-prepare their meals in a private kitchen — no meal plan required. However, they still have other options: buy a Stanford Dining meal plan, or use Cardinal Dollars to buy meals at R&DE’s retail cafes or residential dining halls.
The University of Cincinnati is a top-tier public research university and Ohio’s fourth-largest university. This university dates back to a college founded in 1819. As a result, UC has played an essential part in Cincinnati’s development, training generations of leaders, professionals, artists, and educators.
This dedication to Cincinnati – its people, life, and culture – has persisted throughout the university’s student life and institutional development, including housing and outreach.
Morgens Hall at the University of Cincinnati has most other college halls beat when it comes to a view. Floor-to-ceiling windows create an open-air sensation, and each unit has its heating and cooling system.
In 2013, the school began to refurbish the halls with eco-friendly features such as a solar-glare-reflecting façade that filters sunlight while retaining seclusion. In 2016, the university received an award from the American Institute of Architects of Ohio for the redesign of the facility, and the award-winning Morgens and Scioto Halls have received national recognition for their design and luxury.
Housing and meal plans at University of Cincinnati.
Florida Gulf Coast University started in 1991. It is now one of the State University System of Florida’s newest members and a model of growth and progress. With over 15,000 students, FGCU has been ranked among the best regional institutions in the state, providing high-quality education to Floridians. FGCU is well renowned for its engineering and business degrees, especially in hospitality management, a prominent Florida industry.
North Lake Village is a four-bedroom furnished apartment complex that sits alongside an 80-acre lake. West Lake Village is a one-of-a-kind off-campus residential community that offers three and four-bedroom apartments. Because of how great their dorms are, they can be easily mistaken for one of Florida’s high-end hotels.
South Village was designed specifically for first-year students and served as the focal point of Florida Gulf Coast University’s unique First-Year Residential Experience (FYRE). The FYRE program helps first-year students a smooth transition from home to the university by providing various support systems to help them succeed academically and personally. Students establish relationships and skills that will enhance their university experience by living, learning, and working together.
Housing Options for Florida Gulf Coast University
Arizona State University has grown from a regional public university to one of the most respected and innovative colleges in the United States in the twenty-first century. For that reason, it is now one of the most impressive success stories in American higher education.
Arizona State University is amongst the nation’s most prominent institutions, with five campuses located around the Phoenix metropolitan area. Fortunately for students, ASU’s residential accommodation has been planned for ease and access. Each residence hall is for a specific college, major, or sport and students living close to their primary classrooms.
Manzanita Hall, the designated hall for ASU’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, is a co-ed dorm ideally located in downtown Tempe. Internet access, a microwave, and a shared bath are all included in the rooms. An all-you-can-eat restaurant on-site and a Starbucks are also nearby. There are comfortable couches and plenty of room in the common spaces, and a fitness facility.
ASU is also at the top when it comes to security! All resident halls have keycard admission and security patrols 24 hours a day, seven days a week, ensuring that all student possessions are safe while living on campus.
ASU requires a student ID card to enter the perimeter of any on-campus residence halls. Residents must greet and escort visitors at all times, ensuring a safe campus living environment. Everyone’s safety is paramount in this university.
Arizona State University rates for housing.
Pace University originated as a modest accounting school in 1906 – it was in the right location at the right time – Manhattan Island. Pace University is still one of the top business schools globally. Still, it has also drawn students to New York with health professions, computer technology, and the world-renowned Actors Studio MFA.
Students expect only the best from Pace University, one of which is accommodation.
If a student is searching for a place to live in Lower Manhattan, they will not find something as lovely as Pace’s Beekman Hall unless they have profound connections. Beekman Hall is the world’s tallest collegiate apartment complex, with breathtaking vistas of New York City from every window.
This 34-story dormitory, which stands at 340 feet tall, houses over 700 students in single, triple, and quadruple rooms. Each unit has its bathroom, which is shared solely with other quad or triple residents, and there is a 24-hour fitness facility and lounge space on the “amenities floor.”
Bryn Mawr is known for its academic integrity, new learning and ideas, and political involvement. This school received several awards, including one of the most significant liberal arts institutions in the country and one of the most diverse colleges.
Since its foundation as a Quaker school in 1885, this uncompromisingly feminist institution has considerably impacted women’s education and political ideas. It has a traditional association with the University of Pennsylvania as one of the Seven Sisters. It has purposefully avoided coeducation, focusing instead on women’s empowerment in the sciences, professions, and leadership. It is also hailed for its excellent dorms.
Any of Bryn Mawr’s ten dorms achieves a near-perfect blend of quiet, academic quality, and architectural beauty. The dorms at Bryn Mawr were all planned and built in a variety of architectural styles.
The vast number of residence halls are created in the “Academic or Collegiate Gothic” style. It was prominent in the United States throughout the late 19th and early 20th centuries, distinguishing these dormitories from many other colleges.
The tranquil yet awe-inspiring student housing perfectly complements Bryn Mawr’s remarkable quality and reputation. In these intricate and gorgeous buildings, there are numerous corners where students can have a retreat. Bryn Mawr’s student accommodation, with thick walls and, in some cases, antique window seats and fireplaces, creates the ideal environment for undisturbed study at one of the country’s premier institutions.
Bryn Mawr College room and board
Scripps College is a top women’s college in Claremont, California, known for its historic campus and challenging liberal arts core curriculum. It comprises Pomona, Harvey Mudd, Claremont McKenna, and Pitzer Colleges.
More than 65 majors are available through the consortium – biology, social sciences, and psychology are some of the most popular degrees. Nearly 60% of students get financial help, and the college satisfies 100% of students who demonstrate financial need.
This university has some of the most lavish dorms in the world. Scripps’ campus and uses the weather and terrain. Campus architects reflect what nature provides in terms of setting in academic and residential structures.
With good reason, their dorms frequently rank high on best-dorms lists. They are close-knit communities set on a gorgeous southern California campus, with each dorm accommodating between 70 and 120 individuals. Many of the Mediterranean-style buildings offer balconies with views of palm-lined courtyards or expansive grassy lawns.
Scripps College’s Gabrielle Jungels-Winkler Hall is the cherished jewel in the crown of gorgeous structures. The Gabrielle Jungels-Winkler Hall, named after alumna Gabrielle Jungels-Winkler, opened in 2000.
Scripps provides many activities and opportunities for residents, including community dinners, outings, movie viewing parties, and other events.
Scripps College housing accommodations.
Oberlin College is a private college that began in 1833. It is known for being a school for laid-back people who appreciate learning and broadening societal standards. The college allows each student to have the undergrad experience they desire while also challenging them to improve themselves and the world.
Oberlin is a place where students are more concerned with learning for the love of learning than generating money in a job.
During the week, life at Oberlin may be very mundane, as practically everyone is required to crack open their books and study. However, it is not always dull. They are one of the most significant institutions with residential living that follows the tradition of the best college dorms, emphasizing diversity and community.
According to Oberlin, individuality and the interchange of opinions and ideas with others develop strong, diverse, and inclusive community organizations. These dreams become a reality at the Oberlin dorms. Oberlin provides superb food alternatives as well as excellent living amenities and comfort.
The dorm options at Oberlin are particularly noteworthy. Students can reside in standard college housing or a variety of themed living arrangements such as Identity-Based Communities and Language Houses, Theme Living, Co-ops, Village Housing, and Freshman Housing.
Oberlin dorms are among the most diverse yet inclusive college housing in the country. This statement is true whether the student is looking to live with like-minded scholars, is interested in language, or wants to live beyond their regular comfort zone.
In the heart of California’s wine country, Sonoma State University was formed in 1960 to satisfy the region’s rising educational needs, which had previously been rural and poorly populated. With over 9000 students, SSU has evolved to educate, house, and amuse the community. Sonoma State University features nationally-acclaimed viticulture and wine business department, which draws students from all around the country.
The school is full of beautiful vineyards and is only one hour from San Francisco, providing students with the ideal combination of small-town and city living (if you have a car.)
For 3,100 students, SSU’s residential community provides pleasant and convenient on-campus accommodation. Six residential communities are available, four of which are open to first-year students. Students can get lucky and reside in Cabernet or Sauvignon, the apartment-style dorms, or Zinfandel and Verdot, the suite-style dorms; of course, all villages are named after wines.
The community is a one-of-a-kind blend of non-traditional resident suites and campus apartments, conveniently located near the main campus classroom buildings. All living quarters are fully furnished and carpeted, with separate living rooms and bathrooms and fully-equipped kitchens. Wi-Fi is available in all suites and flats.
Sauvignon, on the other hand, is by far the best living community on campus! If a student wants to call it, it is an apartment-style dorm, with a full living room, kitchen, and pantry, two double bedrooms, and two single bedrooms, each with its bathroom. Every accommodation comes with a balcony or deck. Some of Sauvignon’s double rooms have been converted to triples due to the increased demand for dorms, but with the amount of space a student has, this is not an issue!
Sonoma State University food and housing costs
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can I live alone in my dorm?
Most colleges require two to four people in a dormitory; however, with upcharges (and if space allows), you may be able to live on campus alone.
Can dorm mates be females and males together?
Generally speaking, campuses do not allow both sexes to co-habitat together in the same room. Some colleges have facilities for men and different facilities for women; although some allow different genders on alternate floors, or at the very least… next door to one another. Check before you sign on if this is important to you!
Is it better to live on campus or off campus?
Traditionally, living in the dorm that your university has provided for you is the least expensive option. However, if you choose to live off-campus and can acquire several roommates to help incur the cost, you could come out cheaper… but, make sure your roommates are dependable and can pay their portion of the rent so you are not left with owing the rent yourself or ruin your good credit!
Times Have Changed
Study sessions, beer parties, and, of course, those tiny, dreary college dorms may come to mind while recalling your college years. Dorm rooms are not always seen as comfortable, let alone luxurious, due to sharing space with strangers and the dreaded public restrooms.
However, as institutions compete for new students, several have raised the bar by offering rooms and amenities that resemble those found in high-end hotels or luxurious apartments. Students and parents alike have higher expectations of what a college education should provide, so the faded resident halls of the past appear to be on their way out.
Students today desire living circumstances that will help them have a better overall college experience. A dorm that is more than simply a place to sleep and study is an essential component of that experience.
The College Dorm Breakdown
College dorms have different types of rooms: double, triple, and squads. Other dorms are called “suites,” which are more akin to apartments than standard dorm rooms. Several bedrooms, a shared bathroom, a common area, and a shared kitchen area are what students may see in suite-style dorm rooms. However, the usual dorms for first-year students are bunk beds only.
Furthermore, regardless of the type of dorm one avails, it means sharing. Everyone knows what that means, LESS TO NO PRIVACY!
These places are not apartments or condo units, but some schools have gone to extremes offering hotel-vibe dorms to their students. Students have to conduct a little online research to find the best dorm life today – and that is what we are going to do.
A study confirmed that the ambiance of the student’s living quarters significantly affects their school performance. For this reason, colleges have tried to entice potential students with modern residence halls and better dorm rooms that are a long way from the simple design approaches of the past.
The College Board says that nearly 64% of students studying in private universities and 40% from public and community colleges live on-campus. The remaining percentage from both schools live off-campus, probably with their parents or in apartments.
From that data, it suggests that private universities have better dormitories than public and community colleges – pretty understandable. Dorms, especially in private institutions, are expensive. As a result, some students prefer to reside with their parents or in small apartments.
The student will be paying for the amenities such as security, resources, and meal plans. While it is costly, it is worth it! Plus, it will save the student the time, effort, and expenses of transportation.
Adjusting to the College Dorm Transition
Some students have a hard time adjusting to their dorm life, but some are thriving. The experience the student will have is subjective.
If one wishes to thrive in dorm life, one must have these vital qualities in correlation:
- Can get along with other people
- Not over-friendly
- Can recognize limits
A student needs to learn to get along with other people and not just their roommate. They will be living with people who do not share the same views as them. If a student is a social butterfly, they have a high chance of fitting in and thriving. However, if one is not, the whole dorm life thing might give them a shock.
The best tip for this is to make friends with the right people. Students must go along with at least two people: the resident assistant or RA and the roommate.
Developing a friendship with one of the RAs is an exciting secret some students do not know.
Being friends with an RA will work to one’s advantage. If, for instance, a student cannot stand the breath of their roommate, they can ask the RA “friend” for a roommate swap.
Second, a student has to organize their thoughts and their things – these are two of the keys to studying better. Being organized is not only about finding the right tools, such as drawers and stationery. Being organized is a mindset.
Dorm rooms are not like spacious living rooms. The average space is 12-by-19 feet only, meaning the student will not have enough room to be messy – and their roommate will hate them if they are sloppy. Stacking the books in one space, folding the clothes, and organizing the schedule are a few things that should help a student thrive.
Last but not least, avoid being overly friendly and know the limits.
College is a transition period between childhood and adulthood, making this an excellent time to try new things. After all, college students are presumably between the ages of 18 and 22, and the body is spewing more hormones than it will ever again during this age.
When a student sees someone gorgeous walking down the hall, they may begin to consider being more than friends with them. It is just automatic at their age.
In addition, there will be parties in a dorm. Beer kegs will come from unexpected locations. The decision is up to the student whether or not they will participate in parties. Just be careful not to overdo it.
It will not take many keg parties to discover that drinking too much beer in the evening causes many agonies the following day. The point is, learn to recognize limits with all the exciting things that come with living in a college dorm.
On an added note, some schools may have added private theaters, excellent cuisine, and daily or weekly housekeeping services. Concerns about reducing carbon emissions and ensuring the long-term viability of schools have led to the construction of environmentally friendly buildings, the use of solar energy, and the expansion of outdoor spaces.
Choosing a dorm means deciding on the setting for new friendships, intriguing discussions, and lifelong memories. As a result, it is a crucial decision that demands careful consideration.
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