Freshman housing at Boston College is usually divided into two groups: Newton and Upper. While many former Newton-ites extoll the virtues and glory of Newton, Upper is typically regarded as the preferable option for incoming eagles. However, even within those lucky freshman placed on Upper, there is another seemingly undesirable subgroup: the forced triple.
A forced triple is a double that has an extra bed added, so a room designed for two is now forced to accommodate three people. With a guaranteed spot on Upper campus and a reduction in your room and board costs, there are some benefits to the forced triple. However, the limited space can pose organizational challenges and the cramped quarters can make adjusting to life with two new roommates a little more difficult.
Luckily for you freshmen, the Gavel has some sage words of wisdom for making the best of any housing situation, including the forced triple.
1. The first thing you have to do is acknowledge that space will be limited. There will be three of you, and only two closets. So when you pack, keep this in mind. Freshmen usually overpack anyway, so try to limit the number of clothes and shoes you bring. Unless you live really far away, you’ll be able to bring more stuff later once the weather changes. So, don’t pack your Bean boots and Patagonias quite yet. Once you do bring your cold-weather clothes, make space by sending some others home in their place.
2. Find creative ways to store things. Use the space under the beds, underneath your desk and on top of your dresser. Also, make sure you’re diligent about keeping the room neat. Things get messy quickly in a forced triple. You simply don’t have the luxury of kicking off your shoes and leaving them by your bed or letting laundry accumulate.
3. Be patient and respectful. Figuring out how to live with a new person is tough, and sharing a small room with two new people can exacerbate this. It will sometimes feel like there isn’t room for three different personalities in such a small space. Give it time. Eventually, you three will settle into a routine that’s comfortable for everyone, but don’t expect this to happen right away.
4. Find places outside of your room to spend time. Do your homework in the common room or the library. Go watch TV in a friend’s room. One large benefit of the forced triple is that it pushes you to expand your network early on in the year.
5. Make the best of it. No housing situation is perfect, although it might seem like it. BC is a wonderful place full of really cool people, so hopefully you’ll be too busy to spend much time in your room anyway.