Dorm Sweet Dorm

Most college students in America are familiar with the age-old college hack: ramen noodles. It may always be a cheap staple of college culture, but there are lesser-known tips and tricks to be incorporated into college life. There are hacks to keep you healthy, organized and happy while living the dorm life. 

College residence halls and apartments are not notoriously spacious. However, there are ways to maximize limited space while letting personality shine through. 

Maggie Wampler, sophomore communication sciences and disorders major said stacking wooden crates in different formations to create cute storage helps her stay organized.  

Similarly, senior speech and theater education major, Katelynn Wilson, has invested in neutral colored storage boxes, drawers and cubbies. 

“In college, you move a lot, so don’t waste money and time decorating with millions of little knick-knacks and wall decor items,” Wilson said. “Just choose a few cute items that match your theme, and then if you want more, add pictures.” 

For effective space usage and visual appeal, Caitlin Pannell, a junior marketing major, uses the under part of her bed for storage and covers it with a bedskirt for appearance. 

Pannell suggests adding twinkle lights to each room to make up for lack of natural light. 

Candles and other wax burners are prohibited in the dorms, so Wampler recommends an alternative to keep her dorm smelling pleasant. 

“One thing that seems a little silly, but has been very worthwhile, is putting dryer sheets in our air vents to keep our room smelling good and fresh,” Wampler said. 

DIY decorations are another way to showcase personality, individualism and creativity.

“A lot of the decor in my room are items I made myself,” Wampler said. “DIYs are a great way to make your decor your own while spending very little money.”

Sarah Kantra, sophomore interior design major, shows off her personality by purchasing seasonal decorations from a dollar store to hang on her door.

“For Christmas, December and January, we had little snowflakes,” Kantra said. “For Valentine’s Day coming up, you can buy little hearts.”

Sarah Miloshewski, sophomore nursing major, stays organized by keeping a Command hook near her bed to hang her keys. 

Beyond staying on a budget and keeping organized, maintaining healthy eating habits is another challenge presented to college students living in the dorms. Students often have minimal time to cook or sit down  for every meal. 

When eating meals, choose foods that help you stay full longer to avoid overeating. 

“Make substitutes that are going to make your body feel healthier,” Sarah Lowe, junior elementary education major, said. “You’re still getting the fullness, and it still tastes good.”

Lowe advises picking protein over pasta, rice over fries and popped rice chips over potato chips. These substitutes will help get the most nutrients out of a meal. 

Kantra said she tries her best to pick grilled over fried. 

“We all want the unhealthier foods, but in the long run, it’s going to make you feel better during the day and about your body in general,” Kantra said.

Most residence halls rooms are equipped with a microwave and refrigerator. However, each residence hall has a fully-functioning community kitchen in the building for students to dabble in the culinary arts.