Wageningen Student Accommodation – What It’s Like to Live on Dijkgraaf?
Wondering where you could live when you study in Wageningen? After you’ve signed up as a housing seeker on Idealis (here’s how to do that), you see that there’s plenty of variety in terms of location, price and sharing accommodation with other students. But apart from the dry facts, it’s difficult to understand what these different student rooms are like. To help you out, I’ll get together with the tenants of Idealis and let them share their experience with you.
To start out, my corridor mates and I will tell you about Dijkgraaf, one of the high-rise star flats in Wageningen. Generally, you live in one corridor with 18 (first four floors) or 10 people, and share the kitchen, toilets and bathrooms, but have the choice to have your own washbasin in your room. Most importantly, the building is located right on the edge of WUR campus, and you can reach the Forum building by bike in 5 minutes.
I’ve lived on the 9th floor of Dijkgraaf since August and share the corridor with 10 students from China, the Netherlands, Hungary and Italy. Not only is it a good mix of nationalities, but some of us are doing a bachelor and some a master, and some are full-time students, while others are here for an exchange semester.
Why did you choose to live on Dijkgraaf?
Jing – First, it’s near the campus. With rain and cold you don’t want to be far away. And second, we have the common shared space where we can meet each other.
Xiaoxuan – I registered with Idealis late, so I didn’t have much choice. All the rooms I applied for were facing south, because they get more sunshine. That was crucial for me. And the closer to campus, the better.
Liza – I didn’t have much choice either because there’s no priority with Idealis in January. So, I was always at the end of the list when applying for rooms. Instead, I looked to sub-rent via Facebook and finally found a room that was available here.
David – I was simply desperate to find any room because my sub-rent at Assepark was ending and I needed a place to stay.
Õnne – I was also a bit desperate because it took a while to find a room. But in the end, I even had a couple of options. I chose for Dijkgraaf because it was the cheapest option.
Mariska – The first floors are even cheaper than up here, but then you share with more people. I used to live on the 2nd floor but living with 18 people was too much. I think 10 people in a corridor is perfect, because it doesn’t get so messy. That’s why I also decided to move. Moving to another room in your own building is very easy, you can get a room quickly when there’s one available.
What were your first impressions when you moved in?
Õnne – For me it was difficult at first because I used to have my own apartment. I really needed to get used to the shared space and the fact that I cannot customize much about the kitchen or bathroom. I thought that there will be lines to the toilet and shower in the mornings, but actually I rarely have to wait for anyone.
Liza – I’m a bit claustrophobic. So I wasn’t too happy when I first saw the tiny elevator and this little corridor. But I got used to it and I think there’s enough space and the rooms are quite big.
Claudio – Yes, I agree. I can tell you the difference between Marijkeweg and here. On Marijkeweg you have your own kitchen and your own bathroom. So you can manage your dirty stuff, your own chaos. Here the kitchen is a bit chaotic, but you get used to that. But you also see people and share space with them and have dinner together. There are cons, but definitely more pros to living here.
Õnne – And at the same time, if you want to be alone, you can stay in your room and nobody bothers you. We have the option to be alone or be with others, depending on what we feel like. In a studio you won’t have this option.
Claudio – Sharing is an important factor, because you need to share even little things, like when you are cooking or when you’re having breakfast, or just say hello, good morning, good night. It’s something that makes a difference.
David – I used to live in Assepark, which is similar to here, but with 8 people in the hallway. But my hallway was considered one of the dirtiest in Assepark. So when I walked in here, I was like, wow, this is clean.
Mariska – I had the same when I walked in here, because on the 2nd floor it is so dirty. Here it was so organized and clean.
What are the best and worst features of living on Dijkgraaf?
Xiaoxuan – We’ve had a lot of fruit flies lately, that’s annoying. There’s nothing else I dislike. I like the shared space and, in the kitchen, we also have more shared stuff for cooking that we all can use.
Liza – There are many old, funny and strange things here. Like the stickers and posters on many walls and on the cupboards and drawers. I feel like I want to clean them. It’s a bit much when you first walk in, but you get used to it quickly.
Xiaoxuan – It’s a kind of culture here.
Õnne – Yeah, I guess the weird stuff makes it look more like a student house.
David – I like that it’s close by and rather cheap for student living.
Liza – When I wake up and come in the kitchen for breakfast, someone’s always here and smiling and saying good morning.
Õnne – I also like the view, especially the sunsets, and waking up with the sun in the morning.
How’s Dijkgraaf compared to where you have lived before, or compared to common student housing back home?
Xiaoxuan – In China several people live together in one room. At least two, but four is very common. So, when I came here it felt so nice to have my own room and more privacy.
Claudio – I guess we can get used to any situation. It’s new for a bit, but then we get used to it.
Liza – I used to live with my parents and then had my own apartment, but I know that in the student housing rooms are also often shared with one or more people. It’s not like here.
Claudio – I see the difference between Marijkeweg and this place. I really prefer a bit dirtier, but with people. With a community feeling. You feel like you’re in a family situation where you share little things every day.
Õnne – I think many people don’t realize what they sacrifice for their own facilities.
Claudio – When you have your own kitchen and bathroom you can clean it all up and it’s brilliantly clean, but you’re still alone. And if you miss some spices or oil, there’s nothing you can do. Here you can find everything. Since the first they I moved here it has been way better. Marijkeweg was 2,5 km away, this is a few meters from the campus. If you’re running late in the morning, that makes a difference. Dijkgraaf is so close. People and distance – these are the essential factors.
So, all in all we all conclude that living on Dijkgraaf has its perks – we love the fact that it’s so close to campus and sharing makes life much more enjoyable.
I hope my conversation with my corridor mates gives you some good insights into what living on Dijkgraaf is like and what to look for in your future room/apartment. If you have any questions about Dijkgraaf, let us know in the comments! And stay tuned by subscribing and be the first one to know when the next housing blogpost is ready for you.