College Culture – Revision

According to Jane Camarillo, director of the Office of Residential Education at Stanford, roommates fall into three categories.

“If you had to break down roommate pairings, they might fall into three categories: the best friends, the peaceful coexisters, and the soon-to-be-divorced.”

Something you need to know about roommates and the college experience. The roommate you live with will affect the course of your social life, it will improve your people skills, and it will help you make friends. College is a time that students find themselves suddenly living with someone not of their choosing or knowing.

It surely ranks among life’s most vulnerable moments.

According to Sheri Hineman, Assistant Director of Residence Life of Morningside College, no one says students should live on campus for a “college experience” but rather living on campus is a way to transition from living with parents to living on your own.

“Morningside College is a residential college. As such we value the importance of students having the experience of living with others who are in a similar situation and have similar goals. The residence halls are a great way to transition from living in a home with family to being on your own and supporting yourself.”

Living on campus is not the college experience, but having roommates is. It starts as a terrifying experience, but in the end, that person could become your best friend. Alternatively, they just end up being the person you share a room with.

“Roommates are a significant part of the college experience. Learning to live with someone who is not a relative and who has differing views than you is a growing experience. Also, you have the chance to meet someone who will be a friend for life.” Sheri informs.

Experience the roommate life is no exception for current Morningside College seniors Brayton Hagge and Kaylin Petersen. The two, once complete strangers, met their freshman year at Morningside because of the random roommate assignment.

At Stanford University, they do not accept roommate requests. They also do not tell students who their roommate will be until they arrive on campus.

“Your freshman roommate is (a) not someone you choose; (b) quite possibly your polar opposite; and (c) hard to get rid of. And yet, sometimes it works out perfectly.”

Sheri believes that this tactic gives all incoming students a chance not to judge their roommate until they meet.

“In my opinion, this equalizes all students and forces their first meeting to be face-to-face, so the student will not be judged on social media or preconceived notions about ethnic, social, political, occupational, athletic, or other group membership that can be found out before someone actually meets someone.”

Although not knowing whom your roommate is before you meet them, does stop preconceived notions, there is no statistic saying it is better than choosing roommates. Here at Morningside students are given an option on your roommates, you can sign up with one, you can sign up for a random one, or you can pay extra for a single room.

Brayton Hagge from Crofton, Nebraska was the only student from her graduating class going to Morningside. Without knowing anyone else going to her future school, she had no choice but to fill out the housing survey to have a random roommate.

“From her pictures, I knew she was a cheerleader, but that is it.” Brayton shrugs.

Kaylin Petersen from Lake Park, Iowa did know other students at Morningside. At the time, she was a cheerleader on campus and had an old friend from her high school here.

As much as she loved her cheer team and her friend, she chose to have a random roommate because it would make her socialize more and expand her friend group.

“The freshman experience is about getting the chance to know more people and it gave me an opportunity to expand my friend base.” Kaylin laughs. “Awkward then, and still awkward now, but with more confidence about it.”

Random roommate assignment is what Brayton and Kaylin got. They came to Morningside knowing that they were going to be roommates but had no idea what the other person was going to be like besides the photos and information their on their Facebook page.

Initially, Brayton added Kaylin and Kaylin accepted and then they Facebook investigated each other. The only conversation the two had was who is bringing what for the room. They did not talk to get to know each other until they met freshman move-in day.

Although Morningside calls them “random roommates” the roommate selection process is far from random. Students at Morningside get to have a say in what they want in a roommate and where they want to be placed.

“Although we frequently refer to the roommate selection process as random it is defiantly not random at Morningside. Random would be pulling 2 names out of a hat and then a room number out of a hat and putting them together.   Students make a number of requests when being paired with a roommate. Athletes often request another athlete, either from the same sport or any sport not their own. Students in the arts often request another student in the arts. A nursing major may request another science major.” Sheri says.

Although Morningside lets you know who your roommate is ahead of time. Morningside and Stanford University works to ensure some roommate compatibility. Even without the majors and co-curricular activities students are paired up based on a series of student responses about their habits, such as, when and how they listen to music, study, sleep and choose to socialize. As with any imprecise science, the results are unpredictable.

Eventually, freshman moving day came, and Kaylin was there before Brayton. “When she first entered the room, she greeted me and immediately I thought, she’s friendly and is going to be more outgoing than me,” Kaylin chuckles with a shake of her head. “And then the first thing we talked about is how messy we are.”

According to Sheri, the ideal roommate situation is where you can live in the same room together, but outside of the room, each roommate has their separate friend group.

“I think the most ideal roommate situation is one where you can coexist and talk to your roommate and have good friends outside of the room. This allows a student to express frustration with a roommate to their friends or express frustration with a friend to their roommate.”

Brayton and Kaylin had an ideal living situation.

Kaylin, without knowing the ideal situation, says what made it work best for them was that they were not spending every minute of the day together. The two had their friend groups that they hung out with during the day, but in the evening, in the room they shared, they became friends.

It did not mean that Brayton and Kaylin avoided each other outside of the residence hall. It was just nice for the two of them to get away from each other by having other friends, but still having a friend at home. There isn’t a rhyme or a rhythm; the students have to figure it for themselves.

Flash forward to three years later. Brayton and Kaylin now live off campus, in a duplex, and are still roommates.

According to Camarillo, more upperclass students complain about their roommates then freshman.

“She reports that far more upperclass students than freshmen complain of irreconcilable roommate differences. That sounds counterintuitive, given that most upperclassmen get to choose their roommates whereas freshmen do not. But friendship does not always equal roommate compatibility, and some best-friend pairs may go into their new living arrangement with emotionally charged expectations.”

Kari* who started as a sophomore when she came to Morningside had a roommate picked out. She went to high school with her first roommate, and they were not best friends, but they knew each other and got along. Before the end of their first year living together, they were fighting consistently every night, and by the end of the year, they did not even talk.

The bright side to bad roommate experiences is that it gives the student a chance to go out, meet new people, and find close friends that way.

“Your roommate doesn’t have to be your best friend,” Camarillo from Stanford insists.

The next year, Kari moved in with a friend she made in college and they fought. It worked well enough for them to move into the same room for Kari’s final year at Morningside. Where her last year, she and the roommate had a blow out of yelling and slamming doors at each other. They still keep in minor touch today.

There is no way to say yes or no to being friends with your roommate or staying roommates strictly because there are a lot of factors that go into the decision.

“Every situation is so unique; it is hard to say a yes or no,” Sheri says. “What is the problem with your roommate? Is the problem really you (you’re unhappy, so that shows in your relationships)? How good of friends are you? What do you expect from the roommate situation?” Sheri adds.

Whether it was the different personalities or maybe Kari can’t have roommates. Things just don’t always go according to plan. It is like learning how to live with your roommates like Brayton and Kaylin. You just have to keep testing out the waters to see if you can live with someone else.

Bad roommates can’t really be avoided because no one really knows if they are going to work together or not until they give it a shot.

“I would argue that there are not bad roommates but bad matches. Similar to the philosophy that “there is someone for everyone,” I believe that there is a roommate for everyone.” Sheri informs.

Kari is now in graduate school and living off campus in a house by herself, and she says although it gets lonely, it is nice having a place you call her own.

If you should learn anything about having roommates in college it’s that it’s a learning experience and maybe your first roommate doesn’t work out and you don’t feel like you’re getting a college experience because of it, you are.

“The three things that come to mind as most important about living on campus college experience are making friends, improving people skills, and the convenience of living on campus.” Sheri shares.

Roommates are a part of college culture and whether you get along with your roommate or not. You end up learning some things about yourself such as how to live with other people, if you can live with other people, or if you are better off alone. Even then, don’t give up unless you know living with people is not for you.

*In my previous post, you know this story is about Kari. Meaning even if I changed her name, you’d still know it is about her. She just wishes for her last name not to be mentioned.



Sheri Hineman, Assistant Director of Residence Life of Morningside College

Brayton Hagge

Kaylin Petersen


Profile Final – President Brinkerhoff. Katelyn Brinkerhoff.

Profile Final – President Brinkerhoff. Katelyn Brinkerhoff.


Katelyn Brinkerhoff is BV President today and US President tomorrow.

Katelyn Brinkerhoff, a senior at Buena Vista University (BVU), is a full-time student majoring in environmental science. Her goal after college is to become a Naturalist at a county conservation. There she would like to run a summer camp that involves educational programming and work with animals.

Her personality, as she describes, is helpful, funny, good listening, understanding, and blunt. She would also like to call herself a good friend but is not confident in what others will say.

“I’d like to define myself as a good friend, but we’ll see other’s might think differently.” Katelyn shrugs.

Some would say she does not care what others think of her, but everyone has their own personal turmoil. Chase Harrison, her friend of two years, believes that she fits in well with his friend group and does not think of her as a selfish person.

“I was struck by how frank she was about everything, and I liked that- BV FRIENDSit fit in with my other friends really well, and it has continued to be that way,” Chase says.

He also adds the word “relentless” to the list of describing Katelyn’s personality.

“She never gives up on what she wants, and nothing or nobody can stand in the way of that. That’s what defines Katelyn’s more than anything else.” Chase says.

Katelyn’s approach to life, with being so involved on campus, is to think positive and to set goals. Being positive and setting goals helps her see the light at the end of the tunnel.

“That [keeping positive and setting goals] drives me to keep going and knowing that I’ll have a nice life. I turn the negativity into a challenge and use that as a prove them wrong, kind of thing.”

She may think positively, but the negativity of others motivates her. That inspires her goals and pushes her to do her best. She calls them the “Let me show you moments.” These moments are where someone puts you down because they think you are incapable of doing something.

“This is what has driven me to do the things I’m doing at school right now. And to be the person that I am.” She adds.

Chase Harrison agrees that she uses negativity to her advantage and by doing that he believes she lives fully. She never beats around the bush and is very clear on how she feels.

“She lives her life very fully- feeling everything and doing everything to its’ very fullest. It’s always very obvious how she feels because she makes that clear in her words and actions.” Chase shares.

BV KATE PRESIDENTKatelyn is President of the Buena Vista University Student Senate (BVUSS). The position, as she describes as working side by side with faculty senate, being a part of the board of trustees of the university and working with the committees in there, chair as President of the entire Student Senate, also to be the voice and face of the BVU student body, present at events.

Currently, because of her position of Student Senate President, she is chairing a search and screen committee for a new President of the University.

Outside of Student Senate, she is a member of the Adventure Leadership Program Scholar (ALPS). It is an organization on BV’s campus that plans trips to go off campus that are adventure based in nature, such as caving, camping, rock climbing, etc. ALPS is not a part of major, but the activities tie in well.

Between being President of Student Senate and a member of ALPS, she is even more involved with other things on campus such as outdoor clubs BV has to offer, hosting events for the Student Activities Board (SAB), volunteering at the campus greenhouse, and everything band and choir related.

Every weekend, Katelyn comes back to Sioux City, to be a Team Leader at Chick-Fil-A.

BV KATE COWShe is there mainly for a source of income. Katelyn has learned several leadership skills and has applied them to her life. While working at Chick-Fil-A, she has learned how to build relationships on a professional scale, how to handle conflicts, how to talk to people that might have problems with you, and how to work with a team of people of different personalities. These lessons have helped in her professional development and personal growth.

Emily Druyor, Team Leader and co-worker of Katelyn, has nothing bad to say about her either. They have worked together for three years, and Emily says her first impression of Katelyn is “She seems like a nice girl.” Also, if Emily had the chance to be friends with Katelyn sooner, she would.

She calls Katelyn as a person with a face to trust and that no matter the situation, Katelyn is always positive.

“She has the prime qualities [of a Chick-Fil-A Leader],” Emily says. “She’s a hard worker, trustworthy, motivated, and overall very positive.”

Katelyn has done much growing over her college years. Although she is positive, she has her worries. She knows what she wants for the future, but she is afraid of the future and what’s to come.

“It’s cool not knowing what we are going to do, but at the same time it’s terrifying.” Katelyn shares.

She’s afraid of not being able to achieve her goals in life such as being a Naturalist at a county conservation. Also just typical “grown-up” things like finding a job, settling down, and overall happiness.

Life, in general, is what keeps Katelyn up at night. She has a care for others and always puts them before herself. She wonders how she could help them and make the world a better place.

“Life in general. How is everything going to get figured out? What can I do to help change the world like those really big ideas? With things BV KATE AND BEVERgoing on in everyone’s life, how can I make their lives better and not have them go through things that I had to go through, how can I help them get out of those situations. Just things like that. How can I just be a better person? Those are some things that keep me up.”

Katelyn a senior at BV has no care in the world for herself but for everyone else. She strives for excellence in everything she does, and it comes off on those around her. She takes all the negativity in her life and makes it her motivation. She’s always positive and is someone you can always trust. She never lets anything get her down.

If there is anything you need to know about Katelyn it’s, as Chase says, she’s going to be President someday.

Is there something you think people should know about Katelyn?

“She’s gonna be president someday. If I know anyone who will be POTUS, it’s Katelyn Brinkerhoff. Brinkerhoff-Cena 2032.”


Photo Credit: Facebook

Katelyn Profile Sketch/Outline = Trash



Who Katelyn is:


Occupation and Activities


à Chick-Fil-A interview


Activities involved in



Worries her


Approach to life


Motivates her


Matter to her




I find myself always at a crossroads of telling the profile like a story and being artful with it or with what I have here, the skeleton of how straight and simple my profiles mainly are.

This is the person and this is what they do.

That doesn’t really get into the person, but just some generic things about them they would tell anyone.

What to do and where to go?

We have to keep some things secret~

Meet Tyler Figge

Story/ Article #4 – Final

10479189_10153004224413975_4131987483384331350_nStanding at 5’11”, with dark purple hair, charming blue eyes, a deceiving smile, and a hella good smolder is Tyler Martin Figge. If there was one phrase used to describe Tyler Martin perfectly, it would be: a nightmare dressed like a daydream. He is either everyone’s best friend or worst nightmare. According to his roommate, Kyle Kinney, he’s always causing drama, but means well. He will always there for you. Always willing to put aside all of the drama and his crazy partying lifestyle on hold, just to help someone out.

Tyler is a senior at Morningside College and is heavily involved on campus. He serves as the sexy vice president of the Morningside Activities Council, Beta Beta Beta President, Morningside Student Government Commuter Representative, and runs for the Morningside Track and Cross Country Team. He is going to Morningside for a biology/chemistry major with a minor in business and world history. In the future, Tyler’s plans on going to grad school for marine biology or zoology because he wants to work with penguins. While in his free time all he likes to do is party, sleep, watch netflix, and paint.

“He will always be the life of the party and he definitely has to be the center of attention at that party. And if he’s not, he kinda just pouts there in the corner.” Kyle shares when it comes to Tyler at parties. He disagrees with him though, because if the attention isn’t on him he will make it all about him.

For example, at a Halloween party he had arrived late, due to work, and instead of walking in and joining the crowd. He made his presence known and immediately everyone fed off of his energy. Then when he was ready to roll out, he took a select few back to his house and continued the party there.

Life of the party or not, he will always put aside his own feelings when it comes to helping out a friend in need. Tyler says for himself that he cares a lot for people and will do anything for just about anyone. He has a very big heart and a vibe that is very welcoming and opening to everyone. He is known to stick up for people and to say what is on his mind. His battle or not, if someone is getting picked on he will not stand-by to watch it happen.

His best friend, Anna Hart, backs him up on that statement. Saying that the best way to describe Tyler is that: “He’s one of those people who’s always there when you need him.”

As nice as Tyler is, let’s not forget that’s he’s actually a nightmare dressed like a day dream. As nice as he can be, he can also be your worst nightmare. You never cross Tyler Figge and think you can get away with it. Simply because once you think you have, it comes to bite you back in the butt. He’ll make it seem like someone else did it or whatever happened as a pure accident on your part. It gets worse though, as scary as all that sounds the terrifying part of it all is that he’s really good at turning you against yourself.

If there’s anything you don’t want to do, it’s get on his bad side. Once you’re there, you will never leave. So, whether he’s doing research on penguins or plotting someone’s pain, you can always bet on Tyler to put a smile on someone’s face. He will always be causing mayhem and being the life of the party, while doing his own thing. Yet will always drop what he’s doing to bring someone’s spirits up. Best friend or worst nightmare, he always means well.

‘Cause, darling, he’s a nightmare dressed like a daydream.