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Four Things Every Freshman Dorm Room Needs

by Olufisayo
Dorm Room Needs

If you’re moving away from home for college and will be living in a dorm room, it can be tricky to know what to pack. Even if you’ve toured the dorms before and know what to expect, moving in and making the space your own is a different proposition.

As a general rule, you will need to keep things simple and practical; dorm rooms are small and often shared. Here are a few essentials.

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Your own bedding

Do you know how people always say there’s nothing like sleeping in your own bed? Well, most dorm room beds won’t be anything like your bed at home – they’re pretty standard – but bringing your own bedding can help you feel more comfortable and acclimatize faster. Having that feeling of home even while you’re far away can also help with feelings of homesickness or worry.

You can either bring your existing bedding or buy new if you prefer. If you’re planning on an entirely fresh start, and that includes your sheets, we suggest getting robust stuff rather than fancy – and don’t go overboard on the pillows! There simply won’t be space.

You may also need to buy new if you’re moving from a larger bed to a twin (as most dorm room beds are).

Name Tags

This is especially important if you are sharing your dorm room with a roommate, or have a shared bathroom on your floor. You want to make sure that all your towels, washcloths, toiletries, and any other bathroom stuff are clearly marked – especially if it’s quite generic and could easily be confused with someone else’s. The same goes for pretty much anything that might be easily mistaken. Just don’t go overboard with the label machine – no one likes a passive-aggressive roommate, and tagging absolutely everything might give the wrong impression.

The Important Stuff

It might seem tempting to leave all your important documentation at home, safe with your parents and away from dorm room parties, but chances are you will need at least some things with you while you’re at college. Make sure you have a copy of your birth certificate, driver’s license and any other relevant forms (financial aid, scholarships, and so on) on hand in your dorm room. Get photocopies if you’re nervous about keeping the originals around.

If you have any prescription medications, you should also keep copies of your prescriptions so you can get a refill when needed. And don’t forget to sign up with a local doctor as soon as you arrive.

Cozy Touches

When you’re in a dorm room and have limited space, it’s hard to know which additional homey touches you will have space for. Think about the things that are important to you, or that will have a positive impact on your experience; prioritize those things. Think about final touches that can be stuck to walls, or placed on your desk or bed – most dorm rooms don’t have a lot of space and free-standing furniture such as chairs or couches might be a no-go.

If you will have a roommate, try and find out how to contact them before you arrive. That way, for larger items such as TVs or furniture, you can decide who will bring what and if they’re willing to share instead of having two of everything crowding the space. Plus you get to say hello before the craziness of move-in day!

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