Student housing co-ops are associated with a number of colleges and universities, providing a low-cost alternative to dorms, apartments, fraternities, and sororities. Students often choose co-ops initially for the lower cost, and only discover the interpersonal benefits after they move in. For many young people, student co-ops provide them with their first taste of intentional community. Houses range in size from small houses with a handful of residents, to large buildings that house over a hundred co-opers. Some co-ops restrict members to students while others draw members from the broader community. Student co-ops generally subscribe to the principles of the Co-op Movement, known as the Rochdale principles, written down by a group of weavers in Rochdale, England in 1844. In brief, these are: 1) voluntary and open membership; 2) democratic member control; 3) member economic participation; 4) autonomy and independence; 5) cooperation among cooperatives; and 6) concern for community. The North American Students of Cooperation (NASCO) is the organizational voice of the student Co-op Movement. It provides education, training, networking, and development assistance to existing and new student housing, dining, and business co-ops.
- The Student Co-op Movement, by Megan Lindsey Case
- Housing Co-ops listed in the Online Communities Directory