Student Radivoje Femić: “Student life becomes a routine for some, and military service for others.”
An average day of students living in student dormitories in Podgorica brings with it many trials. Living in a collective accommodation is a challenge for some, and for others just another change to which they will adapt.
Radivoje Femić, a student at the Faculty of Law, explained his student life by saying that students in the dormitory are an individual in a crowd. On the other hand, the student of the Faculty of Political Science, Milica Šarčević, said that sometimes that life can become routine. It consists of going to the university, to the reading room, on vacation and spending time with friends. However, student Radivoje Femić adds that regardless of what their daily student routine looks like, it is filled with content. "This kind of life is good for a person to get used to being responsible for their food, budget and the like. For men, this is in a way like military service, which teaches us to be independent," claimed Femić.
How students will get used to the new way of life depends on which dorm they will be able to apply for. Every change affects the individual, but it is up to him to keep up with it. In student dormitories in Podgorica, there are often five rooms in one quarter, which means that at least 15 people share the same bathroom, corridor and terrace. Šarčević added that adaptation also depends on what kind of roommate you will have. "For someone who will live with a person who shares the same habits and with whom he will easily reach agreements, acceptance of living together will be easier. But the key to everything is compromise, regardless of whether we live with one, two or three people," stated the student.
In life, happiness always appears as one universal value. It is the basis of everyone's life, including students who look for adequate living conditions in the dormitories that they need while studying at one of the faculties of the University of Montenegro. Both interlocutors indicated exactly this value, but from a different perspective. They drew attention to the fact that the living conditions will depend on it. Student Femić emphasized that a person gets used to living without luxury and that at some point he really realizes that he can live without some things. Šarčević explained that not all rooms are furnished equally.
,,I think that it should not be like that, but that the rooms should be arranged in the same way, without variations. Newer or older furniture, it doesn't matter, as long as the rooms are the same, without differences that will benefit some and not others," she indicated.
The most important aspect of student life is the fulfilment of obligations at the faculty for which they have chosen, and which will further determine their professional orientation. This is precisely why adequate conditions for learning are the main ones. Given that the rooms are small and that several people stay in them, students must study in the reading rooms. These study rooms are available to students 24 hours a day, but not all of them are quiet. The students conclude that the selection comes down to whether one is studying at a technical faculty that requires group projects, designs, and the like, or on the other hand, it is a faculty that requires theoretical knowledge. The loud reading rooms are equipped with large tables that enable practical work, while the quiet ones provide a peaceful atmosphere for those for whom peace is an integral part of the routine of acquiring new knowledge. They bring with them another story. "These are places that are the source of some nice friendships. We are all together in them, and there I have met people from other departments and faculties," said Milica Šarčević. The student of the Faculty of Law emphasized that the working atmosphere and the fact that someone else is studying alongside you, makes the whole process easier and keeps you focused.
We are witnessing that the time we live in is affected by inflation. This phenomenon did not avoid the student quarters, and above all the canteen and its way of working. Students pay for their meals using vouchers, which they top up as they wish. The canteen has increased the prices of its offer, that is, the paid vouchers have lost their value. "From this year, it is necessary to allocate more money for the cafeteria, but regardless, the quality and offer remained the same,” Šarčević stated. In general, students complain about the offer of the canteen because of the monotonous food, which is a problem. They also pointed out that the amount of a certain type of food is not enough, it quickly gone, so they are forced to eat the same or similar food for days. They have a menu on a weekly basis, but most of the dishes that are represented are repeated. "We can’t say that it's ideal, it's not, but you can't stay hungry in a canteen." "For a decent amount of money, you can provide yourself with a hot meal," emphasized Femić.
The basis of social life is socializing. It is very important for students not to neglect this part of themselves, regardless of the fact that they are in another city, where they may not have acquaintances or relatives. The monotonous and difficult days of collective student life will be made easier by the company we have acquired. The socializing of students is mainly limited to the courtyard, a common cafe symbolically called Index, corridors, neighbourhood terraces, and even reading rooms. These statements were confirmed by the students who, without thinking, mentioned socializing as an indispensable segment of the common student life. "A person can study at home, but what he learns when he is separated from it will follow him throughout his life. People graduate from university, but that does not necessarily mean that they will learn something about life," explained student Femić. There are many talented and interesting people in dorms who have something to show the world. Socializing is the source of new acquaintances, love, relationships, and later even marriages. ”My friends and I often marked student evenings with the sound of the guitar, especially in the first year of college. These are the most beautiful meetings where we all gathered and sang in the yard,” recounted the student.
Those shared moments, whether in the canteen, reading room or on a bench in the yard, may not seem important in those moments, but they gain value over time. On the day when we go to the last lecture, do our last exam, put our signature on the final academic paper and receive the diploma, we will ask ourselves when it all came to an end and why the student who as a small child complained about food and bed in the first days, now puts point on the last sentence of the chapter on student life in Podgorica.