The University of Melbourne has 12 colleges all within walking distance to lectures (so no train/tram excuses will work if you’re late). Living at college will give you an all-around experience since you will be living among other students who are doing a variety of courses. Colleges residents all have their own room but generally share bathroom facilities, laundry and common rooms. The college provides three meals per day in a communal dining room and also support your studies by offering tutors and libraries for your research.
I stayed at Queens College during my “Introduction to Melbourne”. It was great fun and I made a lot of friends since I saw all of them at least three times each day (breaky, lunch, dinner). My stay was short (four days) but Kendra (a friend I met during these four days) still lives there so for this blogpost I decided to do an interview with her.
Interview with Kendra, residence at Queens College:
What are you studying?
I am studying mechanical engineering at the University of British Colombia in Vancouver and am currently on exchange to Melbourne University for one semester.
Why did you choose to study engineering?
I chose to study engineering because I really enjoy the application of principles that you learn in your subjects to real-life situations. The problem-solving characteristics of engineering are really exciting and fun to work through with classmates or colleagues.
What is the best thing at Queens college?
The people. Everyone was extremely friendly from day one and treats you just like family. It is a very supportive community where everyone knows everyone’s names and there is never any hesitation starting up a conversation at the dinner table.
How did you get your room at queens? Application?
After searching through all of the college websites from overseas I narrowed my selection down to three top choices and then applied online. The application was very time-consuming and quite tedious but in the end it was probably worth all the hassle because it is extremely handy being so close to campus, having food provided, and being part of the welcoming college community.
What is the worst thing?
The worst thing is probably the fact that all of the meal times are controlled. You only have certain hours where you can go and have dinner and although you can order a late meal and pick it up to consume later I find it annoying that you have to work your schedule around the college feeding times.
What is the food like?
I really enjoy the breakfast and lunches where you have your choice of cereal, fruit, toasts and sometimes hot breakfast and then for lunch there is always a nice salad and sandwich bar.
Does living at college help/hinder your studies?
Living at college helps my studies for a number of reasons. Firstly, the location of the college makes it easy to get to class on time or even to go seek help on campus if I am ever struggling. Second, the college has its own tutorial program with tutors and mentors that can help you out. Thirdly, Queens has its own library with a very broad selection of books, including textbooks, that help with studies.