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10 Tips for Surviving Your First Dorm

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Moving to college is both an exciting and harrowing experience that teaches you how to live on your own. It's completely normal to be worried. To avoid stress, follow these tips for surviving your first dorm experience.

surviving your first dorm room

1. Don't overpack

While it may be tempting to pack everything you could ever want, it's important to remember that you will be sharing a small space with another person. Focus on packing the items you will actually use -- you can always bring back more during break.

2. Remember the essentials

That being said, there are some items that are essential to your college survival and should not be neglected. These include toiletries, study materials, bedding and other dorm essentials.

3. Have a good relationship with your roommate

You and your college roommate don't have to be best friends, but you still have to live together. It's important to be a friendly, respectful roommate. Should a problem arise, talk things out like civil adults. If things still remain volatile, you can request a transfer. It's in your best interest to sign a roommate contract before the semester even starts.

4. Decide on a chore/cleaning schedule

Keep communal chores even with a cleaning schedule that you and your roommate agree to abide by. Alternate chores, like taking out the garbage and cleaning the bathroom. Both of you should be dedicated to keeping your own side of the dorm clean at all times.

5. Keep snacks and water in your room

Since most campuses do not have a 24/7 dining area, having snacks and water in your dorm at all times is a must. Purchasing a water pitcher with a built in filter is a great way to avoid dehydration and limit water bottle usage.

6. Protect your valuables

Do not leave valuables laying out in your dorm. You may trust your roommate, but their friends are likely complete strangers. All electronics should also be protected with pass codes to keep their information secure.

7. Find your Resident Advisor

You may have to speak to your Resident Advisor (RA) should dorming issues arise, so it's important to know where to find them. Locate him or her on move-in day and introduce yourself to make a good first impression.

8. Make friends and acquaintances

Forging connections is essential for your survival at college. If you're not the best at making friends, leave your dorm room open when you're inside -- you'll be surprised at how many students stop in to say hi.

9. Don't ignore your schoolwork

With all the distractions of dorm living, it's easy to let your homework and studying slide. Don't. Always set time aside to complete your schoolwork. If a noisy dorm is bothering you, invest in a pair of noise-canceling headphones.

10. Stay open to new experiences

Most importantly, don't shun new experiences. Join clubs, participate in study groups and sign up for intriguing classes. It's a great way to find out what you're passionate about and an even better way to meet new friends and make connections.

Cassandra Rose  Posted by Cassandra Rose on December 20, 2018

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