Student blog: Niamh – “Accommodation at ANU”

As I promised at the end of the last post, this post will be dedicated to the accommodation options available at the Australian National University.

For the last 5 and a bit months I have been living in on-campus, catered, shared (i.e. sharing bathroom facilities but having a bedroom to yourself) accommodation in a college called Ursula Hall. Ursula Hall is one of six undergraduate halls on campus: Bruce, Burgmann, Burton and Garran, John XXIII, Unilodge, and Ursula.

Bruce Hall is currently being demolished, with residents being moved to a new building for 2017/2018 (SA5). Because nobody has lived in SA5 before, I’m not sure about the arrangements or how it’s going to work, so I probably wouldn’t recommend it for 2017/2018 exchange students.

B&G is a great option if you would prefer being self-catered. It has a very large kitchen area consisting of around 10 individual kitchens, so it’s a perfect space for meeting new people.

Unilodge is the newest and most modern of accommodations, but the flats are either shared with a very small number of people, or are single studios. From talking to my friends in Unilodge, they’ve said that it can really be quite isolated living there, and it’s mainly made up of international students. I would suggest that the ‘shared’ accommodation types are best for meeting new people, and getting a more Australian experience.

The off-campus options for undergraduates are Fenner and Griffin halls. Griffin Hall does not provide accommodation, but is a community that students who live in town (i.e. have found their own accommodation) can access in order to participate in sports and arts activities that the other university halls offer.

Fenner is around a 20 minute walk from campus and will follow Bruce in being demolished in (I believe) 2018/2019, so this may not be the best option.

Even if you’ve been in self-catered accommodation in Lancaster this year, I would definitely recommend trying a catered college. Being in a catered college with set meal times means that it’s so much easier to meet new people and make friends. Plus, it’s much easier in terms of not needing to buy all of your pots and pans, and having to do a weekly grocery shop. This saves so much time (and money in the long run).

No matter which college you choose, each will be involved with a range of arts and sports competitions. Netball, softball, choir, dance -there really is something for everyone. I would definitely recommend getting involved with as many of these activities as you can. They’re a great method for meeting new people.

I have had the most amazing time at Ursula Hall and I would recommend it in a heart beat.

I think that’s all for now, but if you have any questions please feel free to email/facebook me.