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Hi, I will join Princeton this fall, and I want to live in OGC. The graduate housing website shows that there are only OGC single and triple, without double type which I prefer. Can someone explain this? Also, what about the living condition for OGC triple? How many rooms it contains?

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This is the cheapest way to get to/from the airport, and it's what most grad students do. Your only other option would be to book a shuttle or a taxi. Also, I would not recommend flying into JFK/LaGua

hey everyone - Princeton grad student here. The social life at Princeton is okay. Most people have lives outside of Princeton either with their families or with college friends in NYC/P

Reading through all of these older posts about Princeton is really making me wonder if it's the place for me...

I'm going to be studying for a one yr qualification (the MPP) at WWS. I'm single and reasonably young and party positive. I thought given the short duration of my stay that a two room single in the OGC would be the best choice for reasons of convenience (eg not having to furnish the apartment) and meeting people/making friends. I'm an international student so I won't be shipping a lot of my belongings over either.  

But reading these threads and seeing how down people are on 'dorms' I'm having second thoughts! The other option would be house-sharing in Lakeside (ideally - or flatsharing in Lawrence) - which would be appealing providing I got on with my housemates! Which option would you recommend for someone who places a high premium on having fun/being socially active? Whilst I'm not hugely into cooking (so ambivalent about the meal plan) I'm also nervous about the lack of cooking facilities/weekend food service in the Grad College buildings. 

Advice much appreciated! 

 

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On 3/21/2016 at 1:25 AM, mubear said:

Another question - as an international student, I need to open a US bank account either before I get to the US or as soon as I arrive.

Any recommendations on a good bank to choose? 

We have Bank of America here, I think that's probably the only one I could open before I get to the US.

Thanks!

there's a Bank of America in Princeton right on the main street. Also a Chase, PNC, and Santander 

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14 hours ago, happygomucky said:

I'm going to be studying for a one yr qualification (the MPP) at WWS. I'm single and reasonably young and party positive. I thought given the short duration of my stay that a two room single in the OGC would be the best choice for reasons of convenience (eg not having to furnish the apartment) and meeting people/making friends. I'm an international student so I won't be shipping a lot of my belongings over either.  

But reading these threads and seeing how down people are on 'dorms' I'm having second thoughts! The other option would be house-sharing in Lakeside (ideally - or flatsharing in Lawrence) - which would be appealing providing I got on with my housemates! Which option would you recommend for someone who places a high premium on having fun/being socially active? Whilst I'm not hugely into cooking (so ambivalent about the meal plan) I'm also nervous about the lack of cooking facilities/weekend food service in the Grad College buildings. 

Advice much appreciated! 

 

Lakeside offers furnished units (rent is slightly higher than non-furnished apartments), so if you're attending for only a year and decide not to stay in the grad college then that's an alternative. It's also possible to rent a furnished room off-campus, I've seen fliers and ads online for this. I should clarify, though. Even though I've avoided it, there's nothing horrible about the grad college. I think that it gets a bad reputation among many American students (myself included) because most of us had to live in dorms as undergraduates and we're just sick of them. This might not be the case for international students. I didn't want to be in one because I was entering into a PhD program and knew that I was going to be in Princeton for at least 4 years. I wanted a larger place of my own to call home since I was going to stick around. I also love to cook and would hate to be on a meal plan. Nevertheless, it might be a convenient option if you're only here for a year and don't mind the meal plan. I know that there are limited cooking facilities in the grad college. Another option is to live in an Annex (large homes that have been converted into individual, furnished rooms). They give you the option of eating at the grad college (it's within walking distance), but you also have a kitchen in the home that you share with housemates.

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On 3/28/2016 at 4:03 PM, Bleep_Bloop said:

Lakeside offers furnished units (rent is slightly higher than non-furnished apartments), so if you're attending for only a year and decide not to stay in the grad college then that's an alternative. It's also possible to rent a furnished room off-campus, I've seen fliers and ads online for this. I should clarify, though. Even though I've avoided it, there's nothing horrible about the grad college. I think that it gets a bad reputation among many American students (myself included) because most of us had to live in dorms as undergraduates and we're just sick of them. This might not be the case for international students. I didn't want to be in one because I was entering into a PhD program and knew that I was going to be in Princeton for at least 4 years. I wanted a larger place of my own to call home since I was going to stick around. I also love to cook and would hate to be on a meal plan. Nevertheless, it might be a convenient option if you're only here for a year and don't mind the meal plan. I know that there are limited cooking facilities in the grad college. Another option is to live in an Annex (large homes that have been converted into individual, furnished rooms). They give you the option of eating at the grad college (it's within walking distance), but you also have a kitchen in the home that you share with housemates.

Thanks for this. I'm completely in two minds. I can see the benefits of both. I may apply for both the GC and a shared house and see where the chips fall. Either way I'm reassured that there's nothing fundamentally wrong with the GC if I end up there. If I were doing 4 years straight or recently out of undergrad I would have made the exact same call as you...but I'm a decade out of undergrad, only doing a yr and feeling like I need to get the most out of this experience, so it feels more finely balanced :).

Decisions decisions! Annoyingly I can't attend admit day to help me figure this out.   

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Wait, there's an admit day? I haven't received any information about something like that. I emailed my department (CS) but they said there wasn't any orientation. Am I misinformed?

Edited by yungmoni
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On 3/30/2016 at 12:39 AM, yungmoni said:

Wait, there's an admit day? I haven't received any information about something like that. I emailed my department (CS) but they said there wasn't any orientation. Am I misinformed?

Different departments hold their own admit day/open house, so I don't doubt that the MPP program had their own admit day. My open house (for Physics Ph.D.) was just over a week ago, and Chemistry has had at least three different open houses (based upon signs I saw in the hotel). 

It might just be that CS doesn't do an open house.

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So have most people applied for housing yet? Where did you guys apply to (your top choices)?

Also, is it more advantageous to apply earlier, or does it not matter as long as you apply before April 15th?

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7 hours ago, phantom said:

So have most people applied for housing yet? Where did you guys apply to (your top choices)?

Also, is it more advantageous to apply earlier, or does it not matter as long as you apply before April 15th?

I applied already since I figured my preferences weren't going to change...

I only applied for the Annex and Studio Apartment options (I REALLY didn't want to go on a meal plan - I have dietary requirements, so even if the meal plans were able to accommodate those, I'd be paying more for food of lower quality (probably) than I could cook myself).

I'll be looking into off-campus options if I don't get either of those options.

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  • 1 month later...
On 6/3/2016 at 4:36 PM, fghhhhh said:

Have people heard from the housing department yet? I thought we were supposed to hear by May, but haven't received anything.

I received an offer today, I think they're doing it on a rolling basis.

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  • 5 months later...

Hi everyone! I'll be moving to Princeton next fall for a grad program at Princeton Seminary. Does anyone in this forum have experience there with housing, things to know, etc? I would also be interested to know if there is much overlap at all with the University, either socially or in academic life. I know the Seminary has a reciprocity agreement with the University, and so there may be a bit of interaction there in the occasional class, but was curious to know if anyone has comments on that. 

Thanks!

Edited by 918Philosophizer
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I'm a PhD student at the university and haven't directly interacted with anyone from the seminary before, whether socially or academically. In my three years here I've never been aware of any social interaction between students at the seminary and the university. Despite being within walking distance, they're pretty much separate worlds. That said, there's nothing necessarily stopping you from taking classes at the university and making friends with students from the university. In general, Princeton is small and insular. 

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@Bleep_Bloop I appreciate your comment. That's not particularly surprising, but I am curious if you are in a field that would have any similar content with any programs from the Seminary (i.e. humanities, religious studies, ancient languages/history, etc)? I know that students at the Seminary occasionally take classes at the university and vice versa. It's not particularly important, I'm just curious.

More generally, how is your experience living in Princeton? I've skimmed this forum, but most of the entries discussing the lifestyle there are at least several years old.

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1 hour ago, 918Philosophizer said:

@Bleep_Bloop I appreciate your comment. That's not particularly surprising, but I am curious if you are in a field that would have any similar content with any programs from the Seminary (i.e. humanities, religious studies, ancient languages/history, etc)? I know that students at the Seminary occasionally take classes at the university and vice versa. It's not particularly important, I'm just curious.

More generally, how is your experience living in Princeton? I've skimmed this forum, but most of the entries discussing the lifestyle there are at least several years old.

Sorry, I should have mentioned my field above. I'm in the humanities, in a language department. I've taken classes listed in various language departments, comp lit, english, history, art history, etc. The period I study (20th and 21st century) might also be relevant.

Living in Princeton is not great, nor is it awful. I have mixed feelings. Princeton is a phenomenal place to work. Firestone (which I'm assuming you'll have at least limited if not full access to) has absolutely amazing collections and will get you whatever you need. Princeton is quiet and cute and there aren't many distractions. This makes my time here EXTREMELY productive.

At the same time, Princeton gets stressful and lonely and tiresome. It's the price you pay, I suppose. There isn't much to do in town, there's no community outside your home department, the food is pretty bad, everything is expensive (think NYC prices without any of the fun or excitement of the city). Also, don't underestimate how awful of a state New Jersey is.

That said, I don't necessarily regret coming here to study. It can be a cozy place, though difficult to get to know people or find things to do besides studying. It's what we're here to do, after all, but you really do feel like you're living a monastic life as a graduate student here. I'm leaving Princeton at the end of this semester for Philly or NYC because I'll finally be done with my coursework and teaching. I've been waiting for this moment for a long time, though I can't say I don't have a few fond memories of the place. Do you have specific concerns?

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@Bleep_Bloop That's interesting. I visited last fall, and I picked up a little bit of the "small, cute, but a bit insular" vibe. I went to a large-ish public university in the south for college, so it will just be a rather different educational experience (and setting) than my previous one. (Not at all a bad thing, just different!) Living in New Jersey will certainly be different for me, too. My fiance is from New England, so the region will probably be less foreign to her than to me. 

We do get access to all university libraries, which is great. It does sound as though Princeton is a good place to get work done, since there seems to be a dearth of distractions, for better or worse. Would you say that people typically leave Princeton on the weekends? With urban centers so close, and Princeton being a pretty sleepy place, it sounds like people may be in and out of town as much as possible.

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On 11/21/2016 at 9:26 AM, 918Philosophizer said:

@Bleep_Bloop Would you say that people typically leave Princeton on the weekends? With urban centers so close, and Princeton being a pretty sleepy place, it sounds like people may be in and out of town as much as possible.

I'd say it depends entirely on priorities and work load. There are people who go to New York every weekend because they have a significant other that lives there. There are people who live in Princeton but go every other weekend or once a month to hang out, party, etc. Personally I find it pretty difficult to find the time during the semester. That said, it's not a very high priority for me because I'm trying to get as much work done in Princeton as possible before I move away. 5 years for a PhD is very, very little time and the workload is extreme. I go maybe once every two months during a break or vacation. Certainly more often over summers. I'm also not from this region and don't have any friends that live in the city, so I don't have anyone to crash with if I want to stay out late.

 I'll just say that I've found that with the exception of those who have partners in the city, people go much less than I expected and it's largely because there's little time while classes are in session. 

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  • 2 months later...

bumping this thread for 2017-2018

Does anyone know how LGBTQ-friendly the area is? Also, I'm international and was wondering which airport would be the most convenient to fly into & how do I get to Princeton from there, given that I have a couple of large suitcases.

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On 2/6/2017 at 3:59 PM, darthmoeder said:

bumping this thread for 2017-2018

Does anyone know how LGBTQ-friendly the area is? Also, I'm international and was wondering which airport would be the most convenient to fly into & how do I get to Princeton from there, given that I have a couple of large suitcases.

Not sure about LGBT question but as for the latter.  One way is to fly into Newark Liberty international airport, take the airtrain at the airport to Newark airport station, buy a ticket towards Trenton and ride the train up until Princeton junction. From there take the dinky to Princeton Station.  

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On 2/9/2017 at 8:03 PM, TenaciousBushLeaper said:

Not sure about LGBT question but as for the latter.  One way is to fly into Newark Liberty international airport, take the airtrain at the airport to Newark airport station, buy a ticket towards Trenton and ride the train up until Princeton junction. From there take the dinky to Princeton Station.  

This is the cheapest way to get to/from the airport, and it's what most grad students do. Your only other option would be to book a shuttle or a taxi. Also, I would not recommend flying into JFK/LaGuardia/Philly.  I also rely on the train, which should take no more than an hour and a half to get from the Dinky to the terminal. Few delays, schedules are well synchronized, and it's as cheap as you'll get. For these reasons I typically recommend the train, but it depends on how much you're willing to pay for the comfort of not having to lug your bags around. Shuttles will be $50+ and can take almost as long as the train, depending on the number of pick-ups/drop-offs. You won't have to worry about handling your bags on the airtrain, Trenton line, or Dinky, however. Taxis are the fastest and most comfortable option but will cost $100+.

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  • 2 years later...

Bumping this up for 2019 :) I'll likely be starting Princeton next year (a 2-year MPA through the Wilson School). This thread has been really helpful for giving me a sense of the Princeton community!

I was curious, is it still the case that non-married incoming students have almost no shot at getting a studio or 1-bedroom? I'm coming from DC so the idea of paying $900-1400 to have my own place is super exciting. If I don't have a chance at my own place, I'll probably try to reach out to potential roommates to share a 2 or 3-bedroom because the idea of going back to dorm living is not at all appealing to me.

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4 hours ago, somewhatslightlydazed said:

Bumping this up for 2019 :) I'll likely be starting Princeton next year (a 2-year MPA through the Wilson School). This thread has been really helpful for giving me a sense of the Princeton community!

I was curious, is it still the case that non-married incoming students have almost no shot at getting a studio or 1-bedroom? I'm coming from DC so the idea of paying $900-1400 to have my own place is super exciting. If I don't have a chance at my own place, I'll probably try to reach out to potential roommates to share a 2 or 3-bedroom because the idea of going back to dorm living is not at all appealing to me.

I'm not sure if your question is related to campus housing or regular apartment hunting, but if it's regular apartment hunting, the price of a 1-bedroom is about $1200-1600, possibly a little less if you go further out. Also, I peeked through a few of the messages and while Princeton is kind of a sleepy town, there is plenty to do. The university has an art museum on campus and there are a bunch of great restaurants. Grounds for Sculpture is a few minutes from there too, which is also pretty cool. I've lived about 30 minutes away from Princeton most of my life (the rest was spent living in NYC), and I was kind of surprised by the comments that there isn't much to do. Many people from the surrounding area will go there for events and stuff, same as they do to NYC. 

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On 3/21/2019 at 8:40 PM, PsyDGrad90 said:

I'm not sure if your question is related to campus housing or regular apartment hunting, but if it's regular apartment hunting, the price of a 1-bedroom is about $1200-1600, possibly a little less if you go further out. Also, I peeked through a few of the messages and while Princeton is kind of a sleepy town, there is plenty to do. The university has an art museum on campus and there are a bunch of great restaurants. Grounds for Sculpture is a few minutes from there too, which is also pretty cool. I've lived about 30 minutes away from Princeton most of my life (the rest was spent living in NYC), and I was kind of surprised by the comments that there isn't much to do. Many people from the surrounding area will go there for events and stuff, same as they do to NYC. 

Good to know, thanks! I was particularly curious about on-campus housing (which seems cheaper than the off-campus housing options) because I'd love to be close to other grad students, plus having the school as a landlord is just really convenient. But it's good to know that there are affordable off-campus options and that you think there's enough to do in town! I'm a bit hesitant about living in suburbia (the other option I'm considering is in Cambridge so more of an urban setting, but they gave me less aid so it's hard to justify), so it's nice to hear that you think it's a cool place to be.

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On 3/21/2019 at 10:08 PM, somewhatslightlydazed said:

Bumping this up for 2019 :) I'll likely be starting Princeton next year (a 2-year MPA through the Wilson School). This thread has been really helpful for giving me a sense of the Princeton community!

I was curious, is it still the case that non-married incoming students have almost no shot at getting a studio or 1-bedroom? I'm coming from DC so the idea of paying $900-1400 to have my own place is super exciting. If I don't have a chance at my own place, I'll probably try to reach out to potential roommates to share a 2 or 3-bedroom because the idea of going back to dorm living is not at all appealing to me.

Glad to see you're leaning Princeton/WWS :)

I'd love to hear from anyone familiar with Princeton how pet-friendly it is? I'll be bringing my two dogs along, so trying to get a sense of what that would look like.

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