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Making a dorm feel more like a home

Each new fall semester brings an abundance of Wildcats to Weber State. Some are even moving far from home and into the dorms.

(Aubree Eckhardt / The Signpost)
Starting college can be challenging in a lot of ways. Many students choose to live on campus, which comes with its own complications. (Aubree Eckhardt / The Signpost)

Here at Weber, there are two on-campus living options. The first option is to live in Wildcat Village, which gives a more traditional dorm experience. The other option is University Village, which offers more of an apartment style of living.

Dorm life can often be hard to adjust to at first, so it is important to have essentials to make your dorm feel more like a home. During my first few years of college, I lived over in Wildcat Village, where I shared the room with my roommates. My roommates and I had a mini fridge and microwave where we could store snacks and other food for when we were sick of dorm food. We also brought shelves and containers to help give us extra storage since there was a limited amount of storage.

Regardless of the housing plan you pick, it is important to try and make the dorm feel as “homey” as possible. My former roommates and I thought of essentials that were important to us when we lived in the dorms.

First, bring items that remind you of home. It may sound silly, but something as simple as a blanket, decorations or pictures of friends and family can really help a dorm room feel more homey. For me, it really helped feel like the space was my own when I hung up decorations or pictures.

Second, making the dorm bed feel comfy is key. Sometimes the mattresses are really uncomfortable, so having a good mattress pad is crucial.

Third, another crucial item is decent pillows. I wound up spending a good amount of time in bed, so having comfy pillows made all the difference for me.

Fourth, another thing my roommates and I decided was essential was a whiteboard. We had a whiteboard hanging up in our kitchen. We put all of our numbers on it, along with the RA number. It was useful to let each other know if we would be gone for the weekend. That way, we did not have to worry about one another. Having the RA’s number on the whiteboard also helped us memorize the number in case we forgot our key and were locked out.

Fifth, another tip is to bring books, games or movies. My roommate Ashley Rose and I would often watch TV shows or movies together when we needed a break from studying or homework. Fortunately for me, she had an abundance of movies, so we were never bored. I had Uno and would often make my boyfriend play several rounds with me when I was sick of doing homework.

In the end, living in the dorm all comes down to making sure that there is a good relationship between roommates. Communication is key.

My roommates and I were not automatically best friends, but at the very least we were friendly toward one another. We also filled out a roommate agreement that had every person’s preferences when it came to sleeping, studying and guests, which is part of the reason we all got along so well. As it turned out, we all had the same type of preferences.

Although dorm life had its moments of difficulty, it also gave me the taste of true adulthood and independence.

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