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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas Wiertella April 30, 2024

Tips for moving off campus

Winter semester is coming to an end, and as students turn in final assignments, study for finals and even prepare for graduation, there is something else that has been on the mind of many.

This time of year tends to be stressful not only academically for students, but also in terms of living arrangements.

Whether it’s moving out of the dorms at the end of the semester while also juggling exams or securing a place to live off campus in the fall, students have much to do before finishing the school year.

For many students, particularly those who live in on-campus residence halls, the added stress of moving out of their room by a certain date can be tough.

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For those same students and many others as well, finding and securing a place to live when returning to Marquette for fall semester adds a whole other level of stress to the equation.

“Get most of your packing done before finals and then do your cleaning during and after finals,” said Nicholas Carter, front desk attendant in the Payne and Halverson lobby. “Make sure that you’re accounting for when your check out time is. Just make sure you manage your time for finals and cleaning your room because it does take a while.”

Resident director of Van Antwerp Cassie Kobler said the biggest thing students should prepare for when moving out of the dorms are room inspections.

Being sure to follow the guidelines on the inspection list provided by the resident adviser of the hall will help to ensure students have a smooth transition to moving out of the residence halls and avoid having fees charged to their student account.

“Just making sure that they have everything that they want to take home packed up and ready to go and things that they want to donate separated,” Kobler said. “[They should also] make sure that their room looks as good as when they came in.”

Donation boxes will be located within the lobby of each residence hall for students to donate gently used clothing or other items they don’t want to take home. The donations will then be sent to Goodwill. Students are also encouraged to donate any can goods or non-perishable food to St. Vincent de Paul or Salvation Army’s food banks to help families in need.

For students who will not be returning to the residence halls in the fall, finding a place to live either on campus or off campus will be the next step after moving out for the summer.

Nathan Makinen, a senior entrepreneurship major, has lived off campus his entire NMU career after transferring from Gogebic Community College.

“My experience with trying to find off campus housing was pretty good but sometimes it’s difficult to find low income housing,” he said. “Definitely start looking early and make sure to check out the NMU off-campus housing list online.”

According to the dean of students’ website, NMU offers an online student-based off campus housing list, where students can search or post listings for apartments and houses in the Marquette area.

The list gives students the opportunity to look for housing and gives specifics about bedrooms, occupancy, pet allowance, deposit and lease length.

Along with the off-campus housing list, the dean of students office provides all contact information for regional and Marquette area realtors.

The office also offers helpful guides for students living on their own for the first time. “Tenants and Landlords: A Practical Guide,” which is provided by the Michigan Legislature, as well as “Off Campus Living Guide” are just some of the resources NMU provides in addition to FAQs for commuters, sample lease agreements and an off campus living cost calculator.

“It’s definitely really important to have a budget and keep your money straight,” Makinen said. “You want to make sure that the housing you’re looking at is within that budget and that you have enough money left over for other bills and spending money.”

Morgan Ferens, a junior graphic communication major, said it’s important to also plan a budget outside of housing costs, which typically includes a lease, but also heating, electricity, water and garbage expenses.

“Make sure you have a specific ‘what you need’ versus ‘what you want’ when it comes to food and snacks,” Ferens said. “I’d definitely set aside a ‘fun’ funds just to fool around with, but when it comes to groceries and important things make sure that you’re not going over.”

Another big decision students face when moving and living off campus is having roommates.

While some students prefer the comfort and community that residence hall life gives them, others are looking forward to moving out on their own.

Ferens said she decided when moving out of the dorms that it was important she find a single apartment.

“I like to have it quiet when I study, and I don’t like a lot of noise,” Ferens said.

She said living in an apartment on her own will give her the opportunity to be independent and organize things in her own way.

“I want to move forward and learn how to be on my own without people cleaning for me and not having the Marketplace right there,” Ferens said.

Kara Jacoboni, a junior communication studies major, said communication is key when planning to move in with multiple roommates.

“We decided that we didn’t need cable for the summer because there’s already so much to do,” Jacoboni said. “My roommates and I have decided what’s necessary for the house, how much we plan on paying for utilities and how to keep it that way.”

The dean of students office is located on the main floor of the Hedgcock building.

For more information about off campus housing contact dean of students at (906) 227-1700, or visit their website at www.nmu.edu/dso.

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