Living on campus: tips from a junior

Rachel Johnson

Rachel Johnson
Rachel Johnson

Welcome to some of the best (and worst) memories you will make. You will have a hate-love relationship with your residence hall room and roommates by the time you leave, but you will never forget the memories you make. So here are some tips from a junior who has already been there and done that.

Whether you and your roommate are strangers or have been best friends your whole life, you should set up rules and boundaries when you first move in. Come up with limits for the thermostat. That is one of the biggest arguments people have. Talk with your roommate about what time you like to be up and how late you like to stay up, so both can be considerate of the other person. You’ll be sharing a mini fridge, so if you’re picky about sharing food, let your roommate know. There’s no need for a fight-to-the-death battle over some ice cream or a Mountain Dew. Setting rules and boundaries will be vital in making sure you and your roommate respect  each other’s space. 

Let me give you some tips on how to make the most out of the your living space.

When you are in a tiny residence hall room, less is more. If you have a lot of stuff like I did, then raise your bed and put your boxes and any nonessential items under the bed. Little boxes and storage items with some organization are life savers. You can put miscellaneous items into them, like scarves, belts, and other accessories. Boxes are easy to stack, and the perfect size to put in the cubbies of Pierce and Killingsworth Halls. Rearrange your furniture as many times as you need; I didn’t find out how I wanted my room until a month after I moved in. If you have the money, invest in space bags or a shelf to go over your desk, as this adds more storage space (and trust me, you can never have enough space)

Finally, clean your room. Your parents are not there to do your laundry or make sure you clean your room anymore, it is all up to you now. Be courteous — you have someone else living in the same space as you and they don’t want to look at your week old food sitting on your desk, or smell it for that matter. Your roommate also doesn’t want to have friends over and have them see your mess. Make sure it’s presentable. On the weekends when you have no classes, pick up your mess from the week. Doing this allows you to start your new week on a fresh note. You can borrow cleaning supplies and vacuums from the front office in your building, so you have no excuses.

You’re on your own now. Good luck.

Rachel Johnson is junior in mass communication.