BY JANE HURST
You are heading off to college, and ready for some big changes in your life. With so much to plan for, it’s easy to forget some of the basics that can make the transition a lot more comfortable.
For example, most freshmen will be moving from a home environment to life in the dorm. Remember, unless you end up renting an apartment right off the bat, your door room is going to be your home for at least a year or two. So, you may as well bring along the things that are going to help make your daily living just a little bit easier. Here are some suggestions:
- Bedside Table – There may be items you need to access quickly in the middle of the night, such as a glass of water, your phone, etc. One space-saving solution is to get a small table that clips to the side of your bed.
- Extra Outlets – No matter where you live, there never seem to be enough electrical outlets for all of your gadgets. Be sure to bring along a couple of power bars or extension cords so you always have power when you need it.
- Smart Outlet – In addition to power bars, it is also a good idea to have smart Wi-Fi plugs. This allows you to control any outlet from your smartphone, so you can turn the coffee maker on before you get home, turn off things you may have forgotten to turn off, etc.
- Entertainment – You are responsible for providing your own entertainment while you are living in the dorm. Make sure that you bring a television, DVD player, movies, gaming system, and/or other devices that you use for entertainment. Sure, you are supposed to be studying, but you need to take a break once in a while, so you should have the stuff to be able to relax with.
- Supplies – Most dorm rooms are not equipped with basics like cutlery, can openers, coat hangers, plates, etc. Be sure to add these items to your list.
- Breakfast Foods – Skipping breakfast as you dart off to early-morning class is a mistake. So keep some breakfast bars in your dorm room so you can eat on the go. You can also opt for powdered protein shakes that you just mix with water or milk.
- Shower Caddy – Most dorm rooms don’t come with running water, let alone a shower. So you’ll have to use one down the hall that’s used by other dorm residents. Make sure you have a carrier for your hygiene products. Also, get a pair of flip-flops, so you aren’t walking around the shower in bare feet and picking up bacteria.
- Laundry Bags – Rather than tossing your dirty laundry all over the floor, keep things neat and tidy with a few laundry bags. You can get them at just about any department store for less than $20, and they will make things a lot easier when it’s time to take your stuff to the laundry facility.
- Bedding – Your dorm room will likely come with a bed, but you’ll need to bring along your own bedding. Get some soft sheets, a cozy comforter, and supportive pillows. You may want to get a foam mattress pad to make the standard dorm bed more comfortable.
This is by no means a complete list of what you’ll need to bring to create a suitable dorm living space. Need more ideas? You’ll find many suggestions online, such as this list. Also check with your college to see if it provides a customized list that works with the particular dorm rooms on campus.
Jane Hurst has been working in education for over 5 years as a teacher. She loves sharing her knowledge with students, is fascinated about edtech and loves reading, a lot. Follow Jane on Twitter.