Prove your humanity

Grok Magazine sits down with Natalie Yeo, a third-year Bachelor of Arts student majoring in Professional Writing and Publishing, to get a student perspective on what it is like to live at Twin Dolphin Hall.

We ask Natalie about when and why she chose to move into Twin Dolphin Hall.

“I moved into TDH in late March of last year, I initially chose it because in 2022, Curtin was offering fifty per cent off UniLodge accommodation, and TDH was one of the few places that offered a studio room option,” she explains. 

Natalie also shares how much rent she pays per week.

“During 2022, my rent was about $170 a week. But now that the fifty per cent discount has discontinued – and since rent has risen everywhere in WA – I’m now paying $250 a week,” she says.

“It’s a bit cheaper than the normal studio price though, as I live in what’s known as a National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) Studio, so I get a small percentage off my rent. Also, if you’ve renewed your lease for 2023, they give you five per cent off. Without those discounts, I’d be paying up to $350 a week.”

Image Credit: Natalie Yeo

We inquire Natalie about the application process.

“The application process was relatively simple. In 2022, I submitted an expression of interest, and received confirmation several months later,” she describes. 

“As for the renewal, I was sent a renewal form and filled it out. I received confirmation for my 2023 lease around November last year. If you get an NRAS room, note that you’ll have a bunch of paperwork to fill out after your lease is confirmed.”

We ask Natalie what she enjoys the most about her accommodation.

“The fact that it’s on campus, and right above the IGA is great! It’s super convenient to get to my classes, as everything is less than a twenty-minute walk away. If I’m feeling lazy, I can head down to the IGA to grab either lunch or dinner,” she expresses.

We also ask Natalie if she thinks any improvements could be made to Twin Dolphin Hall.

“I wish the laundry fees were cheaper, as it’s four dollars a load and sometimes the dryers don’t work properly, or the washing machines are out of order. I avoid using the dryers – aside from the fact they don’t dry your clothes very well –  because I’d rather not spend eight dollars in one laundry trip,” she admits. 

“Also, this is more of a Curtin thing, but I wish parking was easier. I’ve held off on getting a car since coming here because there’s only fifty parking lots available for residents and it’s assigned by a raffle system.”

Image Credit: Natalie Yeo

Moving on, we inquire Natalie about the benefits and downsides of living on-campus.

“In terms of benefits: convenience! Coles is a twenty-minute walk away, and the Curtin Central Bus Station is right next to TDH, which makes public transport very accessible. And because everything is so brightly lit at night, there’s that added security. I also haven’t seen any creepy bugs here,” she laughs.

“The downside is that UniLodge staff can be very strict about having people over. Having to pay for laundry, and the lack of parking spaces for guests is frustrating too.”

We ask Natalie if she would recommend students to stay at Twin Dolphin Hall.

“If you’re willing to shell out the cash, then yes,” she answers. “If you have a car, or if fees are a problem, then it might be better to live elsewhere.”

Finally, we ask Natalie if she has any advice for Curtin University students who intend to live on-campus.

“Weigh out your options and see what suits you best,” she advises. “Curtin does have other accommodation options, but right now, TDH is the newest and most ‘bougie’ one out of the rest. You do have to factor in the costs though.”

If you want to learn more about on-campus living, head to Curtin University’s website to see their accommodation options.