Connect with us

All Articles

Housing Reviews 2018: McBain

McBain is the definitively the worst dorm on campus. Don’t live here. If you are a rising sophomore whose lottery number isn’t good enough for Nuss, just go to Schapiro. 

Location: 113th and Broadway. 

  • Nearby dorms: Watt, Nussbaum, Frat Row, Carman
  • Stores and restaurants: Milano’s, Junzi, Community, Nussbaum, Panda Express, Morton Williams, Westside, Duane Reade, International, Chase ATM, etc. – pretty much anything near campus on Broadway
    Cost: The cost for upperclassman dorms is standard: $9,538.


  • Bathrooms: Each floor has seven disgusting single-stall bathrooms. People don’t know how to flush or aim. It’s the worst.
  • AC/Heating: Every room has a radiator that may or may not work, depending on what side of the building you’re on. Shaft rooms (true shaft of the building shaft rooms, not the pseudo-shaft between buildings) have AC units, but the rest don’t. It can get really hot in the fall and spring months.
  • Lounge: There is a building lounge on the first floor, and each floor has its own floor lounge. They’re fairly big, but can still get crowded. Floor lounges have AC.
  • Kitchen: Each floor shares a kitchen that’s part of the lounge. The kitchens are pretty spacious if you’re cooking alone, but it gets crowded and annoying to cook around other people. They also get really disgusting because people are horrible and don’t know how to clean up after themselves.
  • Laundry: On the first floor. It doesn’t get horribly busy except when rude inconsiderate people forget to take their laundry out of their machines. It can get disgusting pretty often, which is a running theme in this building.
  • Fire escapes: Haha. No.
  • Bike storage: Nope.
  • Computers/printers: In the first-floor lobby.
  • Gym: A small fitness room (treadmill and ellyptical) on the fourth floor.
  • Intra-transportation: Two smelly, disgusting, slow, unreliable elevators.
  • Hardwood/carpet: Rooms have hardwood, hallways have carpet.

Room variety:

  • Corridor style, with mostly doubles (175) and some singles (41).


  • Doubles: 10/2824 last year, and 10/2905 the year before.
  • Singles: 10/1645 last year, and 10/359 the year before.

Bwog recommendation:

Literally the worst dorm on campus. Why would you voluntarily live here? With a lottery number for McBain, you could probably drop to online and go to Broadway or Schapiro or something. If you think this is going to be Carman 2.0, you will be horribly disappointed. It’s Carman 2.0 with thinner walls, shared bathrooms, slower elevators, more fire alarms, smaller rooms, and no AC. If you’re in the shaft, unless you’re on the top floor facing a very felicitous angle, you will get absolutely no daylight in your room. If you need daylight to function, as most humans do, don’t go for a shaft room. Run away to Schapiro.

Resident opinions:

“Absolutely the worst.”

“Disgusting bathrooms and horrible people.”

“Worst dorm on campus. I miss Carman.”

“Shaft rooms that are below like floor 5 smell like Milano’s in the worst way possible.”

“The walls are super thin, and there’s no sound barrier between your room and the hallway the way there was in Carman, so you hear everything that goes on in the hallway. If you’re a light sleeper, you’ll be woken up when someone so much as walks past your room.”

“The elevators suck.”

“I hate McBain.”

Write a comment

Your email address will not be published.


Have Your Say

What should Bwog's new tagline be?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Recent Comments

is it too late to bully them into letting me take a gap year? :( (read more)
Academic Calendar Updates, Pre-Orientation Programs Canceled Or Modified
June 29, 2020
This is great news Columbia is opening up on schedule. (read more)
Academic Calendar Updates, Pre-Orientation Programs Canceled Or Modified
June 25, 2020
EXPEL ALL RACISTS FROM COLUMBIA! Tod Howard Hawks, Columbia College, Class of 1966 (read more)
Racist Messages In FIJI GroupMe Surface, Involved Members Asked To Disaffiliate
June 25, 2020
It is great Columbia will be opening on time in the fall. (read more)
Academic Calendar Updates, Pre-Orientation Programs Canceled Or Modified
June 25, 2020

Comment Policy

The purpose of Bwog’s comment section is to facilitate honest and open discussion between members of the Columbia community. We encourage commenters to take advantage of—without abusing—the opportunity to engage in anonymous critical dialogue with other community members. A comment may be moderated if it contains:
  • A slur—defined as a pejorative derogatory phrase—based on ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, ability, or spiritual belief
  • Hate speech
  • Unauthorized use of a person’s identity
  • Personal information about an individual
  • Baseless personal attacks on specific individuals
  • Spam or self-promotion
  • Copyright infringement
  • Libel