Res. Hall Insights: Witte and Sellery Hall

Witte and Sellery Halls – Southeast Neighborhood

Witte and Sellery Halls are two high rise residence halls about a block away from each other on the Southeast side of campus. The buildings themselves are completely identical, typical dormitory style halls. Both have 10 floors and are broken up into two separate towers connected by the first floor. Seriously, these two halls are EXACTLY the same.

There are a number of learning communities located in these buildings. Witte Hall has the Multicultural Learning Community (MLC), and Sellery Hall has the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE), Entrepreneurial Residential Learning Community (ERLC), and Creative Arts and Design Learning Community (The Studio). Each of these learning communities are one floor within Witte and Sellery. Check out the links to learn what each community is about and what kind of support, events, and programs they have.

Freshman Population

Witte and Sellery both have mostly freshman populations, probably around 95% freshman. Like every other mostly freshman residence halls, they are great halls to meet lots of new friends.

Room Style

All the rooms are doubles and are typical for what most freshman live in on the UW-Madison campus. What’s unique about Witte and Sellery is they both have two room types, a two-window and a three-window room. There is no real advantage or disadvantage between them, and there are a ton of cool set-ups you could do with either.

The furniture in all dorm rooms are stackable or loftable and allow you to customize your room to what will suit you and your roommate’s needs. It’s so easy to set-up many students change their room around once or twice a semester. Here is a peak at Witte and Sellery’s bed styles.

Two-window room in Witte Hall:

witte hall 2witte hall

Two-window room in Sellery Hall:

sellery hall 2 sellery hall

Bathrooms 

Witte and Sellery are co-ed by room which means every other room could be either male or female students. The bathrooms are in a community style set-up where they are shared with the other students on your floor.

As I’ve said before, I know those words immediately send you running in a panic. You’re going to have to trust me, they don’t live up the massive negative hype created about them.

In fact, I would go so far to say that I met a good number of new friends in the bathrooms. If you don’t eventually say hi to that one other person in the bathroom brushing their teeth before the 8am class you both thought would be easy to get up for because, “Hey, I got up earlier than that for high school,” every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, then you’re full of baloney. You obviously both have a lot in common.

brushing teeth

The community bathrooms have about five shower stalls, toilet stalls, and sinks. The showers are in separate lockable stalls, so you can maintain your privacy.There shouldn’t be any issues with having to wait as college students we’ve all got some wacky schedules which spreads out the traffic enough that there tends not to be a “bathroom rush hour”.

Location

Witte and Sellery Hall are located closer to State Street and the Kohl’s Center. The closest study spot is the S.A.C. located just across the street. Gordon Commons is the largest dining hall on the Southeast side of campus and is located right in between Witte and Sellery.

There are sand volleyball courts by Witte and basketball courts by Sellery. The SERF which is the recreational facility on the Southeast side of campus is also right across the street.

Reader Questions

Did you live in Witte or Sellery and want to share your experiences? What residence hall do you want to hear about next week? Maybe you have another pressing question you want answered, comment on this post or tweet at me, @SierraLivesey. I would love to hear from you!

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The Dating Game – Your Freshman Roommate Options

Ahhh, roommates. You love them, you hate them, you contemplate labeling all the food in the kitchen, so they stop eating your Girl Scout cookies, and that’s only in the past hour.

If you are incoming freshman for 2015-2016 living in the University Housing residence halls, there are three different options you can choose in hopes of finding “the one”. Psst… You can select your option in the ‘Roommates’ tab of your My UW Housing after you sign the contract. You have until May 7th to choose one.

Throughout my years at UW-Madison I have found the roommate shenanigans to be a lot like dating. Yes, dating. Let me explain.

dating

1. The Random Roommate

If you choose to do a random roommate, it is completely random. You get paired together based on how the random assignment process places you, nothing else. It doesn’t matter where you are from, what your major is, when you signed the contract, or anything else. Fate simply pairs you together.

This is a lot like when the nerdy girl in all the movies accidentally bumps into the popular quarter back in the hall way and he drops all his books. It was meant to be. Sometimes they fall in love and ride on horseback into the sunset, sometimes the popular guy ends up being a jerk.

Tathra

So it is with the random roommate. It’s a little risky, but sometimes you can’t trust yourself to get right. You have to let fate do it’s thing. You’re going to have to learn to get along with many different types of people now that you are an adult. What better time to start out than right away with a random roommate?

2. The Preferred Roommate

A “preferred” roommate just means you want to live with someone you already know. In order for you to get paired together you have to make sure that you and your preferred roommate both request each other in the ‘Roommates’ tab’ AND you both have to rank the residence halls EXACTLY the SAME. Seriously, if you don’t rank them exactly the same the computer won’t believe you actually want to be roommates, and you probably won’t end up in the same room. If you do everything correctly, it’s almost a shoe-in. There’s no guarantee, but it’s pretty close.

This is the Ross and Rachel phenomenon (don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about). Girl and boy met. They become friends. After a long while they finally begin to date. However, just because they were friends first doesn’t mean the relationship works out.

ross and rach

My junior year I asked one of my friends to live with me and she said no. I was stunned. Why wouldn’t she live with me? She said that we were too good of friends, and she didn’t want to risk not becoming friends if we didn’t get along as roommates. It may sound crazy to you, but this is a real thing.

Being someone’s friend and living together are completely different scenarios. If you’re picking this option make sure you are prepared to not let a few passive aggressive roommate squabbles get in your way. Better yet, just be open about things that bother you!

3. The Matched Roommate

The third option is roommate matching through a University Housing sponsored app on Facebook called RoomSync. RoomSync allows you to fill out a profile about yourself and answer some general questions like, “What time do you go to bed?” RoomSync will fill in some details with your profile picture and some of the ‘About Me’ information. Don’t worry, no one will have access to your Facebook profile unless you add them as a friend. So no more worrying that they’ll be able to scroll through your history and make fun of your eight grade haircut.

After you are done making your RoomSync profile it will add you to the app, and you can start messaging potential roommates! Once you find someone, you have to both request each other in the ‘Roommates’ tab’ AND you both have to rank the residence halls EXACTLY the SAME. Basically, the same drill as the preferred roommate.

Not surprisingly, this is very similar to the world of online dating. You can shop around and message people until you find someone think you’d click with. Many students idealize RoomSync because they think that if they selected their own roommate online there won’t be any problems. But think about it, does everyone on Match.com end up married?

batmantinder

Make sure your RoomSync profile is as honest as possible. Because, come on, how clean and organized are you really?

Also try to communicate with potential roommates on other mediums besides RoomSync. You could email, text, Skype, SnapChat, snail mail, tweet, talk on the phone, or whatever the cool kids are doing these days. Talk to them for at least a couple of days before you decide anything.

Don’t worry about it too much.

Roommates are one of the biggest concerns for incoming freshman, but don’t fret. Roommates must go through a “Roommate Agreement” within the first month of moving in that help them start conversations about issues before they happen. This not only prevents a lot of issues, it also gives you something to reference if something does happen. You will discuss things you probably haven’t even thought about yet.

  • Who is going to take out the garbage?
  • Are you allowed to eat their food?
  • Can you borrow things without asking?
  • Should you listen to music on your headphones or can you listen on your speakers?
  • Do you have to ask before bringing other people into the room?

The more seriously you fill this out, the better your roommate experience will be!

Questions?

If you are an incoming freshman what option are you thinking about choosing and why? What do you think will be the hardest thing about sharing a room? As always comment below or feel free to tweet at me, @SierraLivesey. But seriously, tweet at me. I want my followers to think I’m cool, ’cause you know, I am.


Res. Hall Insights: Kronshage Hall

Kronshage Hall – Lakeshore Neighborhood

The first thing you need to know about Kronshage Hall is that it isn’t one big building. It is, in fact, eight buildings. Imagine you took an eight floor high-rise, pulled the floors out one-by-one, and arranged them around each other. Each of the eight buildings is called a “house” and all of them together is considered Kronshage Hall.

kronshage

If you live in Kronshage you have access to all eight houses, not just the one you live in.This is what makes it the only “double whammy” dorm. Meaning, you get the small intimate “the family away from your family” vibe within your house because each house has one big study lounge/den. It won’t take long for you to meet the other 74 students.

Plus, you get the big community feel because it’s common for students to venture into other Kronshage houses and hang out or study in their den! Kronshage Hall is among the most populated dorms with 600 students living in all eight of the houses. First one to meet them all wins!

Also, if you haven’t noticed yet, Kronshage is nestled right up against Lake Mendota. Hammocks, picnics, and Frisbees or snow angels, ice walks, and snowball fights are a must, depending on the good ol’ Wisconsin weather. The Lakeshore path lies between Kronshage and Lake Mendota, and it runs along the lakeside east until it hits Memorial Union and west until picnic point. That way if you have class on the Southeast side of campus you can feel free to hit your snooze button a couple extra time and cruise down the Lakeshore path.

Freshman Population

Kronshage Hall is mostly freshman, like 95 to 97%. With the double whammy set-up you can decide to kick it (the cool kids still say that, right?) with your house fam or go out and meet some potential new besties.

Room Style

All the rooms are doubles and are typical for what most freshman live in on the UW-Madison campus. The only difference is that Kronshage rooms have a build in dresser/vanity right into the wall. It makes the room look bigger and gives you a little extra counter and storage space. A win-win for sure.

The furniture in all dorm rooms are stackable or loftable and allow you to customize your room to what will suit you and your roommate’s needs. There are a million and five ways to make your room feel like home.  Take a peek at some of the main bed options you have.

kronshage hallkronshage hall 2

kronshage hall 3

Renovations taking place Summer 2015 will add individual room heat controls. Wisconsin winters have got nothing on you.

Want a more in depth look at a Kronshage room? Watch Cavan James’, a student who lived in Kronshage in 2013-2014, Cribs style video of his room. Watch it!

Bathrooms 

Each floor in a house is either all men or women, and each floor has one bathroom. The bathrooms are in a community style set-up where they are shared with the other people on your floor.

As I’ve said before, I know those words immediately send you running in a panic. You’re going to have to trust me, they don’t live up the the massive negative hype created about them.

In fact, I would go so far to say that I met a good number of new friends in the bathrooms. If you don’t eventually say hi to that one other person in the bathroom brushing their teeth before the 8am class you both thought would be easy to get up for because, “Hey, I got up earlier than that for high school,” every Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, then you’re full of baloney. You obviously both have a lot in common.

brushing teeth

The community bathrooms have about five shower stalls, toilet stalls, and sinks. The showers are in separate lockable stalls, so you can maintain your privacy.There shouldn’t be any issues with having to wait as college students we’ve all got some wacky schedules which spreads out the traffic enough that there tends not to be a “bathroom rush hour”.

Location

You will never live in cheaper lake front property than at Kronshage Hall. Some of the best rooms on campus are Kronshage corner rooms with a lake view, especially for freshman.

Kronshage is located within a less than a three minute walk to two of the six dining halls, Four Lakes Market and Carson’s Market and less than two minutes away from Steenbock library. Get ready for some football because Camp Randall is only a few jump arounds away.

Reader Questions

Did you live in Kronshage and want to share your experiences? What residence hall do you want to hear about next week? Maybe you have another pressing question you want answered, comment on this post or tweet at me, @SierraLivesey. I would love to hear from you!


Res. Hall Insights: Chadbourne Hall

Chadbourne Hall – The Chadbourne Residential College

The first thing anyone needs to know about Chadbourne is that the whole building is apart of the learning community called the Chadbourne Residential College (CRC). If you don’t know what a learning community is check out my previous post, “Which Dorm in the Best One?” aka University Housing: The Basics.

The CRC focuses on creating an intimate liberal arts college feel in the middle of the large research university that is UW-Madison. Living in the CRC gives you the opportunity to attend events that will engage you in the UW-Madison community, grow your professional skills (gotta pad that resume), and meet other students. They’ve gone to hear Neil DeGrasse Tyson speak, had Harrpy Potter marathons, and held conversations about hot button topics while everyone sips hot chocolate.

Check out other past events here! 

You can also take classes that take place right inside Chadbourne and are available only to students within the Chadbourne community. Not only are class sizes smaller with more recognizable faces, you can feel free to strut into class showcasing your new pjs.

pjgroove

Don’t feel overwhelmed at all the stuff going on either. Attendance is not mandatory because, well, you’re not in first grade anymore. If you having a busy week or are not really interested in one of the events, there’s no obligation.

Freshman Population

With Ogg Hall becoming exclusively for upperclassmen next academic year in 2015-2016, Chadbourne will likely have a huge number of freshman. Potentially up to 80% of the whole building could be freshman. With almost 600 students total, that’s still a lot of new friends to meet.

Building and Room Style

While the building has a traditional dormitory style (all double rooms separated into wings) recent renovations give the hall a more updated feel. Each floor now has three bathrooms and each room is air conditioned.

The double rooms are typical for what most freshman live in on the UW-Madison campus. Stackable and loftable furniture allow you to customize your room to what will suit you and your roommate’s needs. Heck, feel free to switch it up in the middle of the semester if you want! Take a peek at some of the main options you have.

chadbourne hall 2 chadbourne hall

Yes, the closet spaces look small (they’re about 3 feet wide and two feet deep), but don’t freak out yet. You can bring your own furniture when you move in. Bring hanging shoe racks, under the bed storage, and get your Pinterest on. Of course, be sure to get the okay from your roommate before you bring that two story shoe rack you made to hold your collection!

Bathrooms

Chadbourne has a community bathroom set-up. I know those words immediately send shivers down your spine, but bare with me. Each floor has three wings which are either all men or women, and each wing has its own bathroom. This means that you will be sharing a bathroom with 20 other people. Again. Contain your fear for a moment.

The community bathrooms have about five shower stalls, toilet stalls, and sinks. The showers are in separate lockable stalls, so you can maintain your privacy.There shouldn’t be any issues with having to wait for a sink to brush your teeth or a shower in the morning. As college students we’ve all got some wacky schedules which spreads out the traffic enough that there tends not to be a “bathroom rush hour”.

Rheta’s Dining Hall

Chadbourne was built with Rheta’s (one of the housing dining facilities) attached to it! That means it’s time to scroll back up  to rewatch that gif. You’re going to need study/practice if you’re strutting into class AND Rheta’s in your pjs. Don’t worry. You have plenty of time if you start now.

Rheta’s is a medium sized dining hall that has seven food “stations” . Think of it like a food court with seven different restaurants. Plus, it has a grab and go convenience store called the Flamingo Run, so you can buy things to stuff in your mini fridge and other odds and ends like band-aids or ibuprofen.

Location

Smack dab at the bottom of Bascom Hill you really can’t ask for a better location. Of course, that does mean walking up Bascom Hill is pretty much unavoidable. The humanities building and the business school are just across the street, and College library isn’t more than three blocks.

Reader Questions

Did I get something wrong? Did you live in Chadbourne and want to share your experiences? Want me to break down a specific residence hall next week? Comment below!


Stubbed Toes and Introductions

You’re probably sitting at your desk with your legs crossed and your hand on your face wondering, “Who is this lady, and why does she think she knows more than me!?”

I’m here to tell you that I don’t know more than you, or at least I didn’t.

I started my college career as a lowly first-generation college student. Which means my mom and dad didn’t go to college, so they had no idea what this whole “college” thing was about. Don’t get me wrong, they did the best they could. Yet, my experience getting to and through college was a lot like when you wake up to get a glass of water in the middle of the night…but are a little too stubborn to turn the light on.

I don’t know more than anyone. I simply stubbed my toe on enough bedside tables obstacles to figure out what gets you to your goals and what gets you cursing. I’ve failed a class. I’ve hated my roommates. I’ve gained the freshman fifteen twice.

patrick

Somehow I’ve also been on the Dean’s List, loved my roommates, and lost the freshman fifteen each time.

giphy (1)

I just LOVE my job.

My tour guide job at University Housing was one of the biggest things that helped me get on track. Because UW Madison is such a large university, my job requires me to interact with many different offices and departments. Suddenly I was aware of all the resources that can sometimes seems hidden as a new student. Most of them I ended up using myself to get help academically, mentally, and financially.

I also get to interact with all kinds of students everyday: high schoolers just checking things out, transfer students hopeful to get accepted, and students from other countries who have heard about us from far away. Chances are I’ve heard and tried to answer almost every question you -or even your mother- could think to ask. I’ll give you some examples.

  • “Is there anything for freshman to do in Madison besides drink?” Quick answer: duh.
  • “Does it snow all the time in the winter?”
  • “Can I hang a hammock in my dorm room?”
  • “Is it easy to make friends?”
  • “What major will guarantee me a job?”
  • “Do I really have to walk everywhere?”
  • “Why are people in Wisconsin so nice?”

Throughout the years, I’ve built up an arsenal of these responses, and I will be explaining many of them to you eventually.

And I LOVE Madison.

I was born and raised in Madison, dreaming of being a Badger. Now that I am in my last semester of my senior year I hope that sharing about the opportunities and adventures I have had here helps others have the chance to experience the same.

My blog posts will give you a heads up on what I wish I would’ve known before and during my first couple years at UW Madison as well as information about resources I have used/learned about from my job. Perhaps, “What to do when you get homesick,” “How to not rip your pants when climbing into your loft,” or “Which dorm is the best one?”

Stay tuned for those answers, and others ranging from transportation, picking a major, (maybe more importantly) picking a roommate, study spots, advising, everything University Housing (dorms), and making friends.


Please remember that the views expressed on UW Badger Hints are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Wisconsin–Madison or University Housing.