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13 Tips for Incoming College Freshmen

Tips from a College Freshman Who Has Gone Through Move-In

Everyone knows that moving into a dorm for the first time can be stressful. Having to find a new routine and being in unfamiliar territory can make anyone anxious. Here are a few tips that I have realized since moving into my dorm as a freshman in college. These tips range from what I did that was helpful to things I wish I had done to make things easier.
  1. If you have a closet or room to hang clothes, hang them on the hangers before you leave. When you have them hung, wrap garbage bags around groups of clothes with the drawstrings wrapped around the hangers. This will save you time when you get to your dorm because you can easily hang the clothes in the closet. Also, you have extra garbage bags for any trash you have from unpacking.
  2. Box items together that have similar uses. For example, put all of your school/desk supplies in one box, all your toiletries in another, bedding in one, etc. This will allow you to unpack your stuff by sections of the room.
  3. When packing the boxes, write down what is in each box. Either keep these lists on your phone, computer, or on a piece of paper in the box. This will help make sure you don't leave something in a box and accidentally throw it out. Make these lists detailed so you don't assume one thing is something else.
  4. Put your bedding in an easily accessible place. Making your bed when you first arrive will help because it will be out of the way, and will start to pull your room together.  
  5. I highly suggest showers shoes for a dorm, even if you have your own bathroom. You never know how clean the showers really are, so its better safe than sorry. Also, as a side note, if you get one of those dish drying mats from the dollar store, you can place your wet shower shoes and shower caddy on it so you don't worry about damaging the floor (no one wants to pay damage fees!). Just make sure you wash the dish drying mat once a week or so so that it doesn't get super disgusting.
  6. Make sure you wear comfortable shoes during welcome week. You will most likely be walking around all day or on your feet a lot, so you will definitely want shoes that are comfortable and don't give you blisters. You don't want to end up miserable because you have painful blisters on your feet. 
  7. If your school has optional welcome week activities, go to them! This is where you can meet a bunch of new friends and have a good time. Also, if there are clubs that interest you, sign up for them or talk to someone who is in the club. Find out what it's about and everything. It's good to get involved early and try new things. These are going to be the best years of your life.
  8. If there is any downtime in your dorm and you aren't doing much, prop your door open. Someone may stop by and talk to you. Befriending people on your floor is a good thing because you will be living with them for the school year.
  9. Whenever you leave for welcome week activities, or really just in general, make sure you have a water bottle with you. Having a full water bottle is nice because you never know when you will have a chance to get water, and on those hot August days, you will definitely need to stay hydrated. With this, make sure you buy a reusable water bottle instead of plastic ones. It is better for you and the earth to have a reusable one.
  10. Remember to eat! This may seem like a no-duh kind of tip, but honestly it is easy to forget to eat, especially if you don't have a dining hall in your dorm. It is easy to put off getting food or getting distracted and forgetting to eat. But you will need energy for welcome week activities and when you have a full day of classes.
  11. Bring more than just junk food for your dorm. I know, its easy to want to bring all kinds of unhealthy food to snack on, but it is a better idea to bring some granola bars or something similar because they are a good thing to eat if you are running late for class or just want a snack between classes and you don't have time for a full meal.
  12. If you think you will have time to get things ready before classes start, do them at home! You never know how much free time you will have during welcome week, so it is better to do whatever you can before you even move into your dorm.
  13. Lastly, DO NOT BUY YOUR TEXTBOOKS UNTIL CLASSES START! Unless, your professor has emailed you before classes start and says that you need to buy a specific book or should have it for the first day of classes, wait to get the book. I say this because you don't want to go buy that $400 textbook and only open it once. Talk to your professors and see what they recommend you to do. If it is a book specifically for your major, then buying it will probably be a good idea. But again, talk to your professor or even upperclassmen who are in the same major as you are. Also, if at all possible, rent your books. It is a lot cheaper to rent your books. Spending the least amount of money on books is your best way to go. Also, shop around at different places for the best price. A lot of times your college bookstore will have a higher price than other places. Check out Amazon, Chegg.com, the publishers' website, or really anywhere. You can usually find them cheaper online than in your bookstore. 

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