Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Moderators: Tempo Gain, TheGingerMan

Forum rules
We hope that the Living in Taiwan forum will be of value to you and others. To ensure this, please note:

It is best to capitalize topics and to avoid vague titles. “Hi, I’m new” and “Help please” are examples of bad titles.

Before posting, please check the FAQ thread, and – more importantly – use the search function to ensure that your topic has not been discussed before and that there is not an existing thread you could update with your contribution.

While Living in Taiwan is a busy, wide-ranging forum, there are other specific forums for relationships, teaching, business, legal issues, animals, food, events, travel, restaurants, and so on. Check the Forumosa menu to find the most appropriate place for your post.

While it is preferable to post questions dealing with dissimilar topics in separate threads (“How Much for an Apartment in Tianmu?”, “Are There Many Foreigners in Tianmu?”), if you are a new arrival, it is possible to present numerous questions in one post, but realize that your thread will then, after two weeks, be merged into the New to Taiwan: Some Questions thread.

Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby dasmania » 16 May 2012, 12:45

I used to live in southern Taiwan and I'm about to return to attend NCTU. Anyways, I'm totally unfamiliar with XinZhu and would like some advice on where to live. Has anybody seen or lived in the dorms at NCTU? If so, what did you think? I'm leaning towards an apartment but I have no friends in that city nor do I know the area, could anyone recommend a street or complex that would be within walking distance of the school? Is there a foreigner area nearby? Thanks for the help guys/gals!
I used to think I was wasting my time teaching in Taiwan...after 6 months of unemployment back home I realized what wasting time truly is. Enjoy the moment.
dasmania
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
 
Posts: 129
ORIGINAL POSTER
Joined: 13 Sep 2009, 11:22
1 Recommends(s)
2 Recognized(s)



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby creztor » 16 May 2012, 14:33

Dorms are like 6000NT for a semester, right? Your own place will cost you you 6k a month... I'd be pick the dorms to save a boatload of money.
Lost in Kaohsiung :D
creztor
Scooter Commuter (qí jī chē shàng xià bān)
Scooter Commuter (qí jī chē shàng xià bān)
 
Posts: 653
Joined: 06 Oct 2005, 16:55
Location: Kaohsiung
89 Recommends(s)
18 Recognized(s)



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby ironlady » 16 May 2012, 21:58

I don't know what the dorms are like at that school, but I lived in the dorms at Fujen (yes, about 10 years ago now, so take that into consideration as well).

Make sure you know what the rules are at the dorm -- and whether they are actually enforced -- before you commit: curfews, quiet hours (if any), how many people will be in a room, how many people will share a bathroom.

Assess your tolerance for truly "going native". I don't mean that in a pejorative way -- it's just that living in a dorm, you will be 100% Taiwanese 100% of the time, and some people tolerate that better than others. There will be various frustrations associated with being a foreign student at a Taiwanese university in the first place. You may -- or may not -- wish to have some "private time" even if it costs NT$6000 a month. Personally, after a semester in the dorm, I was more than happy to pay for an apartment again, but that's me.
Terry Waltz, Ph.D
Click here to Finally Learn Mandarin!
Squid for Brains Learning Games -- not your nainai's flash cards!
...although his father beat him every day, wishing him to learn the speech of Ts'e, it will be impossible for him [at least using current methods]...-Mencius
Forumosan avatar
ironlady
Goddess of Fornication & Prostitutes (tōngjiān hé jìnǚ de nǚshén)
 
Posts: 8382
Joined: 13 Nov 2001, 17:01
Location: A place where people can't sleep or teach English in McDonald's
87 Recommends(s)
321 Recognized(s)
In Taiwan since: 0- 0-1987



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby dasmania » 16 May 2012, 22:54

See that's what I'm thinking. I've lived with roomates for the most part of my adult life, but I've always had a room to myself except for first year University way back when. No problem sharing bathrooms, but I'm really not sure how I could handle living in a room with potentially 4 people. I've been told they tend to put all the foreigners in one room which probably wouldn't be all north Americans...which is fine, but I'm really unsure of how the lack of privacy for that long would do to me.

Does anybody know of apartment prices nearby? Any foreigner complexs? I'm starting to think an extra $20,000 NT might be worth hassle free sleep...
I used to think I was wasting my time teaching in Taiwan...after 6 months of unemployment back home I realized what wasting time truly is. Enjoy the moment.
dasmania
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
 
Posts: 129
ORIGINAL POSTER
Joined: 13 Sep 2009, 11:22
1 Recommends(s)
2 Recognized(s)



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby Teddoman » 16 May 2012, 23:01

dasmania wrote:I used to live in southern Taiwan and I'm about to return to attend NCTU. Anyways, I'm totally unfamiliar with XinZhu and would like some advice on where to live. Has anybody seen or lived in the dorms at NCTU? If so, what did you think? I'm leaning towards an apartment but I have no friends in that city nor do I know the area, could anyone recommend a street or complex that would be within walking distance of the school? Is there a foreigner area nearby? Thanks for the help guys/gals!

Depends on how much you want to integrate with the local students. I found living in the dorms really really helpful for me to get a sense of local culture. Even though I wasn't a formal full time student, it did make me feel like I belonged more and therefore I felt more confident inserting myself into campus life where I could. One of my oldest friends from Taiwan is a huaquiao student (a Taiwanese that grew up overseas but came back and took the college exams) and we met by being roomates. If you're aiming to use the dorms to integrate, then you should request to room with local students. It's just like going to college in the states. A lot of your friendships are made based on living in close quarters and having shared activities. In the US, most people live in the dorms for a couple of years. When they have a pretty stable set of friends, then they branch out and live off campus as upperclassmen.

But yeah, dorm life is pretty different. My dorm was 4 roomates to a room, and that was the senior / foreigner dorm on campus. Some freshmen had 8 to a room. Our whole floor had 3 shower stalls.
Teddoman
Shoe-wielding Legislator (huīwǔ xiézi de lìfǎ wěiyuán)
Shoe-wielding Legislator (huīwǔ xiézi de lìfǎ wěiyuán)
 
Posts: 261
Joined: 03 Jan 2005, 00:31
12 Recommends(s)
10 Recognized(s)



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby dasmania » 16 May 2012, 23:41

didn't the long term lack of privacy get to you? I'd be alright for a month or so, but I've never done it for such a long period of time...I think I'd be aching for a night alone after not too long
I used to think I was wasting my time teaching in Taiwan...after 6 months of unemployment back home I realized what wasting time truly is. Enjoy the moment.
dasmania
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
 
Posts: 129
ORIGINAL POSTER
Joined: 13 Sep 2009, 11:22
1 Recommends(s)
2 Recognized(s)



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby Teddoman » 16 May 2012, 23:57

I had roomates all throughout college. If you have one roomate, what's two more? It really comes down to what motivates you. It was totally worth it to me when my Mandarin sucked. Once my Mandarin was pretty good after having lived in TW a while, I didn't need to be on campus anymore. So when I actually got into an exchange program as a fully matriculated student, I chose not to live on campus.

Another option: I think some local students live on campus but then all chip in for an off campus place they can go to when they need privacy. Sort of a club house so to speak. Might be an option for you. Kind of like a time share or something.

On campus spots are impossible to get unless you're a fully matriculated student. At my first school, only students on exchange programs were allowed (and I wasn't on an exchange program, I was just considered a part time language student). The only way I was even able to do it was making a switch with an actual exchange student who just wanted to party off campus. Luckily, he was enrolled under his English name. I simply assured the housing coordinator that my name was Stewart Johnson or whatever that kid's name was and he wrote in my Chinese name on the actual dorm enrollment sheets :)
Teddoman
Shoe-wielding Legislator (huīwǔ xiézi de lìfǎ wěiyuán)
Shoe-wielding Legislator (huīwǔ xiézi de lìfǎ wěiyuán)
 
Posts: 261
Joined: 03 Jan 2005, 00:31
12 Recommends(s)
10 Recognized(s)



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby dasmania » 17 May 2012, 00:11

lol you sound pretty crafty, I like your style. Well maybe I'll try it for the first semester and see how things go. Wouldn't hurt to get to know a bunch of people off the bat, hopefully no crazies. Whats that they say though, if you look around the room and you can't see the crazy person, its probably you. Some noodles for thought.
I used to think I was wasting my time teaching in Taiwan...after 6 months of unemployment back home I realized what wasting time truly is. Enjoy the moment.
dasmania
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
 
Posts: 129
ORIGINAL POSTER
Joined: 13 Sep 2009, 11:22
1 Recommends(s)
2 Recognized(s)



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby Teddoman » 17 May 2012, 02:08

dasmania wrote:lol you sound pretty crafty, I like your style. Well maybe I'll try it for the first semester and see how things go. Wouldn't hurt to get to know a bunch of people off the bat, hopefully no crazies. Whats that they say though, if you look around the room and you can't see the crazy person, its probably you. Some noodles for thought.

Ha, I did go a little "guerilla" trying to learn Mandarin. And this was back in the late 90s. I bet people in the 70s and 80s had it even worse.

You know the best time to get on campus and make friends, now that I think about it, is summer session. The summer students are remedial students, of which there are lots of overseas Chinese whose Chinese isn't as good as the locals so they end up flunking classes. They're easier to befriend because they're not really treated the same as local Taiwanese students and don't fit in very well themselves.

I found it hard to enter the regular student groups, though people were nice, but I could tell they were sort of just tolerating me. Taiwanese student identities are pretty rigidly constructed around school identities, like xue2jie3 and xue2mei4, and tong2ban1tong2xue2. If you don't have this predefined relationship, it's a little harder to smoothly integrate. It's like there's no predefined reason to be friends. The regular students are a bit more hesistant about going outside the fold, they're just trying to keep up with their tongxue's group activities.

I got a much better reception at the adult cram school I taught at in the neighborhood. There were plenty of university students going there (in addition to their regular classes), and they wanted to take me out after class and hang out. But on campus, I felt like I didn't fit in that much. It was mostly the students that I'd met through the cram school that ended up befriending me and became my Taiwanese friends.
Teddoman
Shoe-wielding Legislator (huīwǔ xiézi de lìfǎ wěiyuán)
Shoe-wielding Legislator (huīwǔ xiézi de lìfǎ wěiyuán)
 
Posts: 261
Joined: 03 Jan 2005, 00:31
12 Recommends(s)
10 Recognized(s)



Re: Should I go for the dorms or an apartment at NCTU?

Postby dasmania » 17 May 2012, 11:51

Not really sure if I'll be dealing with many 'cliques', I'll be post grad and arriving in September so I'd expect my peers to be a bit more friendlier, at least on a school-business relationship.
I used to think I was wasting my time teaching in Taiwan...after 6 months of unemployment back home I realized what wasting time truly is. Enjoy the moment.
dasmania
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
Breakfast Store Laoban (zǎocān diàn lǎobǎn)
 
Posts: 129
ORIGINAL POSTER
Joined: 13 Sep 2009, 11:22
1 Recommends(s)
2 Recognized(s)



FRIENDLY REMINDER
   Please remember that Forumosa is not responsible for the content that appears on the other side of links that Forumosans post on our forums. As a discussion website, we encourage open and frank debate. We have learned that the most effective way to address questionable claims or accusations on Forumosa is by engaging in a sincere and constructive conversation. To make this website work, we must all feel safe in expressing our opinions, this also means backing up any claims with hard facts, including links to other websites.
   Please also remember that one should not believe everything one reads on the Internet, particularly from websites whose content cannot be easily verified or substantiated. Use your common sense and do not hesitate to ask for proof.
Next




Proceed to Living in Taiwan



Who is online

Forumosans browsing this forum: No Forumosans and 3 visitors

Whatever technology you buy today will be obsolete soon, but you can avoid heartache by learning the cycles. New iPods come out every September. New digital cameras come out in February and October.
More tips from David Pogue