Road to Change: From Coed Dorms to Coed Dorm Rooms
Colleges over the years have made many changes that to younger generations are seen as ‘keeping with the times’ while older generations looking back are finding themselves in a situation of slight culture shock. One of the newest decisions being made about the dormitories in the past few years have been that more and more colleges are allowing – believe it or not – coed dorm rooms.
If you asked someone living in the fifties about dormitories, people of different genders were restricted from even entering one another’s buildings. A change in this decision was made during the seventies when many colleges began allowing students to live in coed dorms. Now the decision for many colleges has become an allowance for students if they choose to room with persons of the opposite sex.
Some parents are having a difficult time believing that the rooming choices are not about sex as often as they are about simply finding a friend that you’re close with and feel you’d be compatible as roommates. The number of students living in coed dorm rooms that are couples actually are outweighed by the number of students simply wishing to live with a friend that happens to be of a different gender. As some students have explained, it’s really not about trying to prove a point to anyone or some type of a rebellion against parents to try and upset them. It’s honestly about what’s most functional.
Some of the parents questioned about the decision at schools where their children attend classes made comments about the lack of rational thought about living with a member of a different gender and not having a level of sexual tension present. Student responses turned up the fact that trust, compatibility and practicality all lent to this decision being one that if chosen can prove to work well. While some deans are more willing to side with students in this decision, others fight the decision that rather than being practical it raises some concerns about both what is practical and what is moral.
Where should the line be drawn? Well that answer honestly depends upon who you talk to. Many in the younger generations (whether they personally choose to room with a member of the opposite sex or not) tend to agree that it should be an option. Can some of the problems with roommate be solved if students were able to pick their closest friend of a different gender rather than rooming with their closest friends of the same gender? Many college students today believe that it very well could be the solution that’s been hiding all along. I tend to agree that it should be a decision made by the students that will be living in the dorms. College is a time of experience and learning, and learning happens best in an environment that one is comfortable in.