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Must Haves For Your Dorm Room

Going to college is bound to be one of the most exciting times in a person’s life. The dorm room is where a student is going to be spending half that time so it is important to set up a good living space. A well-organized and comfortable dorm room can help students get the most out of a college experience—both by creating a good environment for studying and for socializing.

First and foremost, every college dorm room needs a computer. In the old days, a college would have a computer room in the library where students could type papers. The problem with this set-up was that there were only so many computers and students would have to wait their turn if a computer was taken. In the fast-paced world of college education, students don’t always have the time to wait to work on an assignment.

Computer rooms still exist but the cost of computers have gone down so most every student is able to afford a computer. If necessary, it is possible to finance a computer, possibly with the college or university itself. It is very important to have unlimited access to a computer—for internet research, writing papers, and keeping in contact with home and friends via email.

It’s recommended that you purchase a laptop as opposed to a desktop computer. Students will be able to easily bring the computer to the library or even to class itself. If the computer has wireless Internet capacity—as most new laptops do—a student will likely be able to access the Internet all over campus.

The computer solves the most important educational tool. The most important entertainment device is some kind of stereo. A portable stereo is a must have for students. A hand-held portable stereo is recommended as well. Each dorm room situation is different. If one student loves loud rock music and the roommate loves classical, they’re probably going to have to listen through headphones. In dorm rooms, Ipods are very popular with a separate Ipod speaker system.

A TV is not necessarily a “must have.”  While it’s comforting to have a TV in a room, it can also cut into study time. It can also be fairly anti-social. You’ll find that the TV room in most dorms is a focal hangout where you can meet other students.

Next, you need to find a way to spice up a dorm room. There may be nothing so drab as dorm room furniture. If you’re not careful, it can feel like being in a hospital room—function over form in every way possible. Lamps are a good way to add some color to the room. First, a lamp is necessary in case your roommate goes to sleep before you do. In most dorm rooms, there is only one overhead light, so you’re going to need a separate light source.

Lamps can also add some form to the function. Get a lamp with a colorful base and it will help color up the room. It’s said that dorm room beds can be one step above a cot so a mattress pad is a good idea as well—unless you like an ultra-soft bed.

While students will be getting most of their meals in the cafeteria, some kind of cooking appliance is a good idea as well—either a water boiler, small microwave, or electric burner, though there may be some restrictions for the latter. It’s important for students to be able to fuel up at any time of day. In addition, this might be the first time some students are cooking for themselves and it teaches a degree of resourcefulness. It can be just fun to cook your own meals in your own room.

Organization is key as well. A dorm room will have a closet with a rod for hangers, a few drawers for clothes, and a few drawers in the desk: that’s it. Extra storage containers and compact hanging systems are recommended. Some organizational boxes for inside the desk and the desktop are important as well.