The dorms on the University of Michigan's campus come in a wide variety. Not only is there some variety in the location of the dorms, individual dorms have distinct atmospheres. For those of you unfamiliar with the UofM campus, it is composed of the Central Campus with 13 residence halls, and the North Campus with two residence halls. North campus is home to the Colleges of Engineering, Architecture and Art, and Music. Located about 1.5 miles north of Central campus, there is an excellent system of busses that can get you from North to Central or Central to North at almost any time.
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Central campus, where most of the action at UofM takes place, has two basic parts. There's the "real" central campus, which has South Quad, West Quad, East Quad, Fletcher, and Helen Newberry and Betsey Barbour. And, there is the "Hill" area, which has Markley, Couzens, Lloyd, Mosher-Jordan, Stockwell, and Oxford Houses. The hill area is roughly a 5-10 minute walk from the majority of campus buildings. On North campus, there are the Bursley Dorms, and Baits housing.
There are dorm that suite a wide variety of needs. For women wishing to live in an exclusively female environment, there are the Newberry and Barbour houses, along with Stockwell dorm. In Mosher-Jordan, the fifth floor is devoted to the WISE program (women in science/engineering). For a lot of engineers, Bursley is the prime choice (since it's right next door to the College of Engineering). Being stuck up at Bursley with most of your classes on Central campus is one of the most common negative experiences for some students, however.
Every dorm has a cafeteria, and four of the dorms have snack bars. The food is top notch here, with a wide variety. To serve students even better, different dorms are on different menus every day, so you can pick and choose where you want to eat.
Safety at the dorms is excellent. Every dorm has an electronic lock system, where students gain entrance to a dorm by swiping their ID card at the doors. A large force of campus security officers are constantly patrolling the dorms, keeping everything safe and sound!
Just going from what I've observed among my friends, these are the most desirable dorms...
1. South Quad (lots of people, more sophomores, close to classes)
2. West Quad (lots of people, some sophomores, close to classes)
3. Markley (lots of people, social, not to far from classes)
But no matter which dorm you end up staying at, the experiences in Ann Arbor will always provide for fun things to do.