5 Ways to Make Your Campus Dorm Feel Like Home

How to decorate your dorm room

Heading off to college and living on your own is an exciting experience, but it doesn’t take long before homesickness kicks in. And having your dorm room resemble a cinder block doesn’t help at all! You will be spending more of your time in a dorm than home, so it’s important to feel comfortable in your own space. And for some SUNY students this fall, brand-new residence halls awaited their August move-ins (lucky!).

While some residents choose to go all-out decorating their room, others keep the “classic” blank walls and clear floor. From my personal experience living in a dorm for 3 years, I think I’ve struck a perfect balance and put together some tips to make the space a little more comfortable to share with you!

Below are five ways you can create a warm environment in your dorm and make it feel like home:

  1. Comfy Bed.  Your bed will be the epicenter of your room and the best way to feel at home is to sleep comfortably. Invest in decorative comforters, colorful sheets and comfy pillows to jazz up your space. Add a memory foam pad to add a layer of comfort if your bed lacks the proper cushion you’re used to.  A blanket is almost a necessity when nights get chilly and you’re up studying. Don’t forget to add your favorite mementos like a stuffed animal to remind you of home!

  2. Music.  Playing your favorite songs is therapeutic and listening to familiar music you share in common with your friends will remind you of the good ‘ol times!
  3. Wall Space/Décor.  Bare walls will deplete your spirits and make your room feel less inviting. Decorate, Decorate, Decorate. Add photos of your friends and family to remind you of your loved ones. Fill your room with signs of your hometown and pictures of your interests. Hang posters of your favorite musicians and celebrities.  If you’re feeling down or homesick, put plenty of positive thinking quotes on your wall to help keep you motivated. Finish your décor with a soft furry rug and a comfy chair for guests to sit on.
  4. Lighting.  Dorm lighting can make your room look and feel miserable. Buy a night light for late night reading, desk lamps for studying and a floor lamp to brighten up your room and mood.
  5. Rituals.  A major way to reduce homesickness is to enjoy the company you live with. Get to know and befriend your roommates and suitemates and develop an activity you will all engage in together. Have a movie night in your dorm every Saturday or make sure to all have a Sunday dinner. Spending quality time with the people you live with will help you bond and make you feel like you have a second family.

Did I forget any? Let us know in the comments or on Facebook or Twitter!

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Shaniese Alston

Author: Shaniese Alston

Shaniese Alston was a student assistant in the Office of New Media of the State University of New York for the fall 2013 academic semester while a student at the University at Albany.

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