Dorming at the New York Institute of Technology’s Manhattan Campus puts other humorous and horrifying stories of dorm life to shame. NYIT has two dorms at two different locations—one called Riverside on 86th street and a leased floor at the Manhattan School of Music on 125th street. These are both separate from our actual campus which is on 59th street Columbus Circle. Wild? I know. Even “normal students” can never settle into boredom in this constantly changing environment. Whether a concert, musical theater performance or just a rehearsal rattles your dorm walls, you’ll always hear something going on. If you go here, you already know what I’m talking about.
But, if you’re new, here are 10 things you will probably experience as an NYIT student living at the Manhattan School of Music dorm.
1. You’re not fazed by the sound of a trumpet at 2 a.m.
When you first move in the sound of instruments at all hours will unnerve you, but over time you forget they even exist. “It’s really cool hearing how they’ve sort of improved from the first time I heard them,” said freshman Eric Szczepanik. When the trumpeters that have kept you up all year finally master their piece, you can both celebrate the little victory with a good night’s sleep—until they have to learn the next one.
2. Or someone singing opera in the elevators.
Yes, opera actually goes down (and up and down again) in these elevators. The first time you hear a singer unexpectedly, you feel terrified. Some sort of acoustic power or other musical magic happens in the elevators that draws primadonnas to perform within them. Freshman Aimee Flanagan said of her first time hearing opera in the elevators, “I was intrigued, and I thought to myself, ‘Wow living here is going to be interesting.’” It has become a normal thing for us to hear it and know that it’s coming from the elevator because it conveniently stops when it reaches our floor and we get on, but hey, at least they’re not bad at it.
3. And speaking about elevators, you’ve probably been crammed in one with 9 other students, a cello, a trombone and a tuba.
Hope that no one farts until you reach your floor because if they did you’d probably pass out due to the lack of air and ventilation. You because If you’ve had a long day and honestly don’t want to wait for the next elevator, you’ll have to break some safety regulations with at least 9 strangers and all their instruments crammed into one. Over time, though, you get used to this recurring trauma in your everyday life. You might even get to squeeze next to your MSM crush.
4. You also have the amazing experience of having one functioning elevator a week
Seriously guys?! After reading numbers three and four you can probably guess the reason why this made the list. At MSM, we consider having both working elevators a miracle because every other week the elevators alternate functioning. “The only thing better than getting stuck in an elevator is getting stuck in the elevator with a trumpet player,” said freshman Brianna Bialko. If you ever do get stuck, security always quickly solves the issue. While you wait, you end up making new friends.
5. The sound of the fire alarm becomes a normal thing.
Like on every college campus, someone normally triggers the fire alarm at least once every two or three weeks. MSM students get the added annoyance of going down 10 flights of stairs to wait in unsettling weather until the fire department clears the building. You all know it was just someone who vaped too much without opening the window. Oh, and don’t forget having to go up ten flights of stairs because the elevators are crowded due to the whole building going inside at the same time. Oh, and only one of those elevators work. But hey, at least you know all the fire alarms work.
6. When you get the same thing at the MSM cafeteria every day and the chef starts preparing your order once you walk in.
I don’t know if I should feel embarrassed, important or touched that he remembers. The MSM staff grow on you. They make you feel at home, pleasing you when they make you that “special” order you came up with, to break out of your everyday routine. They definitely become one of the best parts of dorming at MSM.
7. Chicken dumplings in the cafeteria are a sign of a good day.
“The best thing to come out of New York City since Timothée Chalamet,” freshman Ayiesha Cade said. I’m not kidding when I say that these are the best dumplings I’ve had. The MSM chicken dumplings are usually offered once every one or two weeks in the Asian cuisine station and will surely brighten up your day.
8. Having to explain to confused students the lack of practice rooms on the floor because it’s (technically) not part of their campus.
Yes, it’s weird I know. The practice rooms on the 10th floor were converted into singles for the NYIT RAs, so it’s always amusing having students wander around the floor looking for a piano. In fact, it makes for the perfect April Fool’s joke. “It’s goddamn terrifying having them walk into my room without knocking,” sophomore Tom Bozzo said. By the second time this happens to you, you learn to lock the doors and instruct the confused soul to the nearest practice room.
9. Playing ping-pong at least once with the actual students from MSM.
If there is something MSM takes more seriously than music, it’s ping pong. Located on the 6th floor lounge, the MSM students’ favorite sport is available at all hours of the day. They let anyone play, but don’t doubt for a second that they will not go easy on you. Thanks to them you’ll probably discover some hidden ping-pong talent and get prepared for your rematches at home with your friends.
10. Realizing that college music students are no different than actual college students.
I’ll admit that when I first moved here I thought that they had it easy. I mean how do you test someone on an instrument? Well, let me tell you that after meeting some of them and becoming friends with them, I realized that they too have all the stress us “normal” college students have. They write papers, take exams and have finals and capstones too. After living at MSM you develop a sort of understanding for the other students that reside here too. You understand that it won’t quiet, because just like you they study too. You realize the talent they have for their instruments; I mean they had to get into the school so you end up respecting them and the school.