It is required by the school that all first-year students live in the dorms. Even though some students choose to complain about their living situations, many will agree that the experience was worthwhile and essential to their introduction to SMU. The central areas in each quad provide a meeting spot and leisure area for the students. Many take advantage of the benches and beautiful landscaping SMU offers right in the middle of each quad. The only downside to living on campus is that some of the residence halls have not been renovated in a while. Peyton, Mary Hay, Shuttles, Perkins, Boaz, and Smith do not provide cable TV. The carpets in those dorms are decrepit, and the physical atmosphere in general has a somewhat retro feel. All of the halls are located in the same quad as a dining hall and require no more than five minutes to walk to class.
The dorms here at SMU function like a cabin at camp. Each student is supplied with the basics. The dorm rooms may not be spacious penthouse digs; however, the overall experience is the real focus. Everything can be enhanced, so think twice before complaining about your living situation. The beds can be bunked, pushed together, or lofted. If you find yourself uncomfortable in your bed, purchase a feather mattress cover. If you are tired of staring at white walls, then decorate them. The residence halls can be a fun experience if you are willing to let them provide everything that they are designed to, such as intramural sports, pizza and movie nights, game show nights, and much more.