Upon deciding that I wanted to come to Botswana, my greatest source of indecision was whether I wanted to live in the dorms or in a homestay. While I wanted to receive a full cultural experience that would come with a homestay, I also wanted to maintain a social life and become close friends with my peers. Ultimately, I decided to live in the dorms and I believe it was the right decision for me.
By living in the dorms, I was able to spend a lot more time with my fellow students, we would often cook, work on homework, or just hang out together. It was easy to make plans of when we wanted to go out because we could easily walk to each other's dorms. Furthermore, I was still able to receive a cultural experience because I lived with four native students who loved discussing their culture and language with me. The experience was wonderful and supportive, and I enjoyed feeling the independence by cooking for myself and structuring my own days. It was also a nice feeling as I could take whatever time I needed for myself without feeling as though I were avoiding people or needing to entertain anyone. Perhaps my favorite part was that all my classes were close by, I was able to easily walk to my classes in a short amount of time, unlike my homestay peers who had to travel from half an hour to an hour to reach the school.
That being said, there were definite drawbacks to the dorm experience. There is no wifi, so instead, we had to use either bring a router, purchase a router, or bring an ethernet cord. I personally purchased a router at Game City Mall and later returned it as I had no further need for it. There was also an issue of cockroaches when we arrived. It took some time but after using powder we were able to resolve the issue. Dorm living may also be more expensive as we were required to pay for our own food. However, the food here was not too expensive and it was easy to get to the grocery stores.
Either choice you make has positives and drawbacks, but I truly believe that you can enjoy either choice.