Attending school at The University of Iowa always made sense to Tallie Meidlinger.
“My parents both graduated from here, and in the back of my mind I always thought I’d come here,” says Tallie, who hails from Grand Island, Neb. “I applied to Nebraska at Lincoln, but I was ready for new experiences, new people, and I really liked the campus a lot.”
Tallie had visited the University of Iowa campus when her sister was a student here. She also has grandparents in town, so Iowa City wasn’t a completely foreign environment for her. Still, moving into the residence halls required some adjustment.
“I knew no one coming here—no other students,” she says. “But all the girls on my floor are really cool and have been easy to get to know—we all leave our doors open and hang out. We watch movies and go downtown together.”
Tallie’s pleased that she and her roommate get along well. They’d phoned and e-mailed briefly before the start of school, deciding who would bring what, but they had never met. Tallie was used to her own room at home but says she likes having a roommate.
“We respect each other,” she says. “We usually go to bed around the same time, and if one of us is going to bed early, the other one will be quiet. I’m really glad I’m living in the dorms.”
Tallie even likes the food in the Hillcrest Market Place.
“It’s better than I thought it would be,” she says. “But I do miss not having home-cooked meals.” Once a week she goes to dinner with her sister, who is living in Iowa City and taking classes in preparation for graduate school, her grandparents, and a cousin and her family. She’s happy to have family nearby, but she’s also enjoying her independence.
“It’s really nice to have complete freedom to do whatever I want, whenever I want,” she says. “I love it—it’s totally different than high school. There’s always something to do, always something going on on my floor.
“There are distractions and it’s hard to get work done sometimes,” she admits. “But I’m my own boss. It makes me feel like an adult. College is great. I love it!”
Photos by Kirk Murray