Living with kids on campus

It takes a campus to raise future Ferris students

Most people picture life living on a college campus in a dorm where they get to study, hang out with friends and maybe attend a few college parties. What if you are not a traditional student? What if you already have a family and want to go back to college to make a better life for them? Are your kids going to be supported?

Many people decide later in life that they need to make a change for themselves and/or their family. They want to finish college or maybe change their career path, but how does this work for someone who has already started a family?

Here in Big Rapids, we have the option to bring our families on campus to live with us. And luckily here at Ferris, the kids are embraced and supported.

Living in the family section is a little bit different than living in the other forms of student housing. There are children playing and running around outside with no idea they are in a school-type setting. They are just being kids and enjoying their lives. They don’t understand things like students’ quiet hours for studying or the stress of studying for exams.

You often wonder as a parent, “Is my child being too loud? Can my neighbors hear my kid jumping on the bed, or what to do if they get too loud.” Remembering that they’re kids and they’re going to be a little loud sometimes goes a long way.

Living on campus with children requires a lot of patience, because not only do you have to be patient for your own children and the children and parents that live all around you. You must understand that we are all doing the best we can, and we are all trying to make better lives for ourselves and our children.

It is good to introduce yourself to your neighbors so that if any issues come up, they feel comfortable bringing them to you. Issues come up on campus like when other students get out of hand, and we must remember that there are also children living here to keep safe.

Our campus has a head-start program and a playground. The older children are allowed to have the school bus pick them up on campus. I feel very fortunate that  my child has been well supported here.

They have a saying that says it takes a village to raise a child. Here at Ferris, it takes a campus to raise a child. We all must look out for each other because children are the future, and these future adults might also be Ferris students just like us one day.