As someone who has lived in dorms for quite a while, I feel like it is my responsibility to share my profound knowledge with the incoming class of dorm residents. Apart from the basic things that are obviously necessary, these might be some things that you don’t really think about unless you start living in a dorm. Also, bear in mind that everything you could possibly need for your dorm are all available at Target, a retailer store that sells almost everything you could imagine. There is a Target right across campus that only opened last year!
1. Microwaveable bowl: Living in a dorm means surviving on ramen sometimes because you are too lazy to go get food, or worse, cook. Do you really want to use the stove to boil water forever only to make some ramen? Is a pot even worth buying if the only thing you ever make is ramen? The answer is no. Therefore, you should buy a microwaveable bowl or two. Not only can you use it to make ramen, you can also heat up leftovers quickly, or try some easy microwave recipes. Every dorm on our campus has a microwave and fridge/mini-fridge.
2. Fan: Dorm rooms are infamous for having air conditioning that does not let you set the temperature. If you’re like me, and can not sleep unless the room is freezing, you should buy a tiny fan. Or, if your roommate prefers the room to be at a certain temperature, your tiny fan can blow cool air directly into your face without affecting your roommate.
3. Full length mirror: As far as I know, none of the dorms on campus have a full length mirror. The only mirrors they have are the ones in the bathroom. I like to have a full length mirror so that I can look at my entire outfit. How else will I make sure that my shoes go with the same black leggings I wear everyday?
4. Noise cancelling headphones/disposable ear plugs + sleeping mask: I can’t sleep or study unless it’s super quiet around me, but I can’t ask my roommates to keep it quiet all the time. The walls that separate bedrooms within an apartment do not filter out any noise. Therefore, I use noise cancelling headphones to study, and disposable ear plugs to sleep. If you need it to be dark to sleep, you might also consider buying a sleeping mask in case your roommate goes to bed later than you do.
5. Removable wall hooks: I hate, hate, hate having to put everything away in its proper place, especially towels and jackets and bags. To avoid having to throw everything on floor, I have so many wall hooks in my wardrobe and my bedroom and my bathroom.
I hope this list proves useful to you. You can also read some of my packing tips here on what to bring from home, and what not to.