The following is a compilation of student reviews about possible housing options in the city of Irkutsk. This page is meant to help students prepare for their time abroad.
Katya Grigerman (Summer, 2019): I was staying in the dorm. About half of the students in the program were in the dorm while the other half were in homestays. The dorm had five floors, and each floor was one long hallway with 10 rooms, two bathrooms, and two kitchens. Each room had two beds, and two closets, a fridge, a hot water boiler, a closet, and a little drawer. The bathrooms had two toilets, a shower, and two sinks in each one, and the kitchen was a full kitchen with an oven, stove, sink, and some dishes. The Internet worked great; it was fast, and was always working. Unfortunately for the summer students, they were doing construction on the dorm building during the summer, but that just means its going to look great for future students! Overall, the dorm was very livable, but its not the ritz.
Katya Grigerman (Summer, 2019): The location of the dorm was extremely convenient! It was only a five-minute walk from the busses, and several stores and restaurants. There was a little strip mall one block away that had a few food stalls, a pharmacy, a beer store, and a restaurant. The bus would take about 15-20 minutes to get to the university, and about 10 minutes to get to the trendy quarter.
Katherine Grigerman (Summer, 2019): The dorm had a kitchen, but I rarely used it (lack of kitchen tools and also it wasn’t a very pleasant cooking environment). Near the dorm there are several places to get food though. There are two Slata’s (the main grocery chain in Irkutsk), and they also have a lot of ready-made food there. They also have microwaves, so you can heat up the food that you get there. Also near the dorms are several food stands, including shashlik and shwarma. And finally, there are several restaurants, a Chinese one about a block away, and then several others by the bank about a 10 minute walk.
Was your housing conducive to a social life?
Katherine Grigerman (Summer, 2019): I wouldn’t say that living in the dorms made it easy to meet people, but I don’t think that living in a homestay would have made it better. There were not that many people living in the dorm, besides the six of us living there, there were a few other international students staying there.