The Shaft
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Spectrum will be producing content on The Shaft from now until housing selection ends in early April. If at any time you have questions about The Shaft or about housing selection at Barnumbia, let us know and we’ll do our best to answer them.

Knowing each residence hall’s noise level is important when choosing your future dorm. Are you the type of person who prefers studying in your quiet room? Do you like to be surrounded by fun and friends? Would you not mind a bit of construction right outside your window?

A “loud” dorm may be a good or bad thing, depending on your personality. Some dorms are rowdy because of the social scene, others because of where they’re located. Make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into.

47 Claremont

School: Columbia

Reason for noise: Construction of new Barnard Milstein CenterThe Cheryl and Philip Milstein Teaching and Learning Center (Barnard’s new library coming fall 2018) is under construction, and the noise can be disturbing to those nearby. 47 Claremont is right across the street from the action, so residents have front-row seats to the early morning din. It might be a little bit better if you have that coveted (lol) shafted view, but trust us, you’ll still be able to hear it.

Elliott Hall

School: Barnard

Reason for noise: Construction of new Barnard Milstein Center

Elliott isn’t loud because of the ~crazy~ party scene, but it’s located right next to 47 Claremont, meaning that it’s hearing the same construction ruckus going on in the morning. Especially if your room faces the street, expect to be woken up by jackhammers and the garbage collectors going by at 7 a.m.

Carman Hall

School: Columbia

Reason for noise: Proximity to Frat Row and general first-year social scene

(Not that anyone will be picking into Carman except for RAs, but just in case we have any prefrosh reading.)

For many Columbia students, Carman brings back regretful NSOP memories. The ruckus in this first-year dorm mainly comes from the sound of bad decisions in the making and of cramped pregames. This dorm is for students who identify as “the life of the party” and want to be immersed in the first-year social scene.

McBain Hall

School: Columbia

Reason for noise: Sophomore party scene

Meet Carman 2.0. Here, you will find noise mostly on the weekends, as sophomores de-stress at dorm parties. If you love quiet nights alone on the weekends, McBain might turn out to be the bane of your existence (ha, get it?). But if you want to live right in the middle of the action as a sophomore and are aiming to room with one of your friends, go for it.

Ruggles Hall

School: Columbia

Reason for noise: Junior party scene and delivery trucks

As a Ruggles resident, you will often experience delivery truck-related disturbances (this dorm is located in a busy location for loading and unloading trucks). In addition, Ruggles is a hotspot for wild weekends, so expect to hear “Bad and Boujee” through your wall.

Watt Hall

School: Columbia

Reason for noise: Frat Row

Located on 113th Street right down the street from DSig and other frats, Watt residents can expect to hear some frat noise from the street over the weekend. However, if you have a penchant for the frat scene (or don’t care enough about it to give up the ~NYC apartment vibe~), this dorm is the perfect distance from the action.

East Campus

School: Columbia

Reason for noise: Lit weekends in senior suites

If you’re not the rowdy type, EC might not be the best dorm for you. On a typical weekend, you can find the lobby mobbed with hopeful Barnard partygoers trying to get in and drunk seniors heading out to Mel’s.

Live in a loud dorm? Let us know on our Facebook, Twitter, or Snapchat @CUSpectrum.

Isabella Monaco is Spectrum’s associate editor and a Barnard first-year. She feels incomplete because she has never been to a Carman “party.” Invite her to one at

the shaft housing selection 47-claremont elliott carman mcbain ruggles watt east-campus
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