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Be The Hero Of Your New Dorm

How to clear the moving day hurdles and make some new friends

Congratulations on beginning your college career. The next few years of your life will not define you, but the relationships you build in college may very well last a lifetime. You are going to learn and experience things in an environment where growth and maturity are fostered and forged.

Before you pack your first pair of shoes, take a look at the tips below to make moving day easier. We also have some advice on making friends with the underclassmen and underclasswomen around you.

Moving Day Tips


Before You Go

Preparation is key, but it’s anathema to your life experience so far. Today, you begin a new path. It is much easier to be in the moment and spontaneous when your life is organized and navigable. You locker might have been a disaster area in high school, but there is no reason we cannot turn things around. Let’s start with your dorm room.

Build your dorm room at home

You may not know the dimensions of your dorm room, but you know enough to layout and design your space in advance. You will have a bed and a closet. Perhaps a private bath. All of this you should know in advance. Start to organize your things as if you were living in the dorm already. Make note of what you are using or not using each day. If you are not using it, pack it away in storage. Then, when it’s time to pack for school, you simply box up the things you have been using each day.

Storage is your new best friend

You are not going to want to do laundry. Ever. If you are at a school where laundry night is something you are looking forward to, you need to reevaluate your university choice. You will not need your winter clothes until after Fall Break. Put those in storage. When the break arrives, bring home your summer clothes and swap them out with your winter attire. Wash them first. And don’t make your poor mother do it.

Don’t bring anything extra

You don’t need to bring things that will sit around or take up space. If your parents will let you, start to whittle away at the junk you no longer need. Donate it, recycle or upcycle it, use Go Trashy to have a junk hauling pro remove it. Whatever your method, you will be glad you went minimal when you see your cramped dorm space. You want to be the “new you” at school anyway, right? So leave the old stuff behind, or get rid of it.


Once You Arrive

There will be butterflies in your stomach and smiling faces all around you. The energy on move-in day is frenetic. Do your best to remember names, and be sure to say “Hi,” to anyone with smiling eyes.

Wait for your roommate

Do not dive on the bed you like the most. And don’t assume you know what your roommate might prefer. Wait for them to arrive so you can plan and organize the space together. It’s not just a good way of getting to know each other, it’s also a way of ensuring your roommate doesn’t feel as though the space is yours or theirs. It belongs to both of you.

Make your own bed

Now, and forever into the future, make your own bed. It’s a metaphor you will come to understand in future years. For now, it’s just advice that will help you appear as the confident, competent young individual you are. You are really only making it once anyway, to stop your mom from doing it. Soon, it’ll be a rumpled mess every day.

Help your neighbors move in

You don’t even have to ask their names or offer a handshake. Just point to something and say, “Can I help carry that in?” You will make an impression on everyone you meet. Helping is a way of including. It’s also a way of introducing yourself early-on, before it’s been too long and things get weird.

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