The Dorms: Two Sides of the Same Coin

May 10, 2021

by Carolina Braglia Aloise Bertazolli, LLM student in the Department of Legal Studies

I am currently living in Donaubase and the dorm generates different opinions in people. I think both opinions are important and should be taken into consideration when arguing for or against the dorm. I have a friend1, who is also my classmate, who does not like the dorm at all. He brings relevant arguments when criticizing the dorm, while I have a softer perspective of the entire situation. My friend argues that the dorm is too far from the CEU building, since it takes 45 minutes with the metro and includes a 10-minute walk – although the time can be shortened by taking a tram from Reumannplatz. Additionally, there is no store near the dorm to buy food or any type of clothes. Indeed, those two factors are relevant for students that want to arrive quickly to places and get their grocery shopping done nearby.  

Nevertheless, there is another side of this dorm that needs to be highlighted. The first one is the fact that the Danube is 5 minutes away and the Donauinsel, the artificial island in Vienna, is only a bit further. This is, in my opinion, priceless. Anyone can run next to the Danube or on the island or take a walk with tea or simply read a book while facing the river. Nature is right by for people to enjoy. The river is my personal therapist and my way to handle the stress that a master’s degree can give. For me, the proximity of nature and the peace around the neighborhood compensates for the lack of shops and the long travel time.  

Another factor that can help make the commute go faster is the habit of reading. In my country, it is almost impossible to read while on public transport. However, since I moved to Vienna, I tried to adapt to this custom of reading while travelling. It helps me to enjoy public transport and to read different things that are not connected to the program, to keep my mental health better. Nowadays, I do not want the trip to end, because I enjoying my book and my time so much.  

The dorm’s infrastructure is good. Everybody has their own room with its own kitchen; a small gym that it is good to keep up with exercise; and a common kitchen with an oven, since the rooms do not have one, as well as a bigger stove. The dorm has spaces to park bikes and a separate laundry area. An important detail about the dorm is the distance to the metro and bus: only a 4 minutes’ walk and we are there. All of the people that live in a dorm will have something to complain about and something to be grateful for. At the end of the day, being in a dorm is good to kepp you in contact with people that are going through the same things as you and can understand how you feel.