EDUCATION

College senior gives new meaning to 'off-campus,' spends year living in the Pennsylvania woods

  • In this March 23, 2015 photo, Dylan Miller, a senior at Juniata College, poses in front of his shelter in the woods near campus in Huntingdon, Pa. For his senior research project on simple living, Miller decided to emulate Thoreau instead of just reading his work. So, deep in the woods about a half-hour's walk from campus, he built a hut out of fallen trees, leaves and a tarp - unheated, no plumbing - and has been living there since the beginning of the school year, studying by lantern and chasing away the occasional bear. (AP Photo/Michael Rubinkam)

    In this March 23, 2015 photo, Dylan Miller, a senior at Juniata College, poses in front of his shelter in the woods near campus in Huntingdon, Pa. For his senior research project on simple living, Miller decided to emulate Thoreau instead of just reading his work. So, deep in the woods about a half-hour's walk from campus, he built a hut out of fallen trees, leaves and a tarp - unheated, no plumbing - and has been living there since the beginning of the school year, studying by lantern and chasing away the occasional bear. (AP Photo/Michael Rubinkam)  (The Associated Press)

  • This March 23, 2015 photo shows the hut that Juniata College senior Dylan Miller built in the woods near campus in Huntingdon, Pa. For his senior research project on simple living, Miller decided to emulate Thoreau instead of just reading his work. So, deep in the woods about a half-hour's walk from campus, he built a hut out of fallen trees, leaves and a tarp - unheated, no plumbing - and has been living there since the beginning of the school year, studying by lantern and chasing away the occasional bear. (AP Photo/Michael Rubinkam)

    This March 23, 2015 photo shows the hut that Juniata College senior Dylan Miller built in the woods near campus in Huntingdon, Pa. For his senior research project on simple living, Miller decided to emulate Thoreau instead of just reading his work. So, deep in the woods about a half-hour's walk from campus, he built a hut out of fallen trees, leaves and a tarp - unheated, no plumbing - and has been living there since the beginning of the school year, studying by lantern and chasing away the occasional bear. (AP Photo/Michael Rubinkam)  (The Associated Press)

  • This March 23, 2015 photo shows the hut that Juniata College senior Dylan Miller built in the woods near campus in Huntingdon, Pa. For his senior research project on simple living, Miller decided to emulate Thoreau instead of just reading his work. So, deep in the woods about a half-hour's walk from campus, he built a hut out of fallen trees, leaves and a tarp - unheated, no plumbing - and has been living there since the beginning of the school year, studying by lantern and chasing away the occasional bear. (AP Photo/Michael Rubinkam)

    This March 23, 2015 photo shows the hut that Juniata College senior Dylan Miller built in the woods near campus in Huntingdon, Pa. For his senior research project on simple living, Miller decided to emulate Thoreau instead of just reading his work. So, deep in the woods about a half-hour's walk from campus, he built a hut out of fallen trees, leaves and a tarp - unheated, no plumbing - and has been living there since the beginning of the school year, studying by lantern and chasing away the occasional bear. (AP Photo/Michael Rubinkam)  (The Associated Press)

You'd think Dylan Miller would have looked forward to spring, considering he spent his senior year of college living off-campus — WAY off campus — in a sturdy but rudimentary shelter he built in the woods.

But he says he didn't mind eating, studying and sleeping in winter's chill.

Miller's a philosophy and English major at central Pennsylvania's Juniata College. He decided to live like Henry David Thoreau for his senior research project on simple living. So he built a 17-by-17 hut from fallen timber, using leaves as insulation and a tarp for a roof.

He says he's become more patient and learned to live with less.

The hut won't be his home for much longer. Miller plans to tear it down when he graduates next month.