Home Sweet Home: Living On Your Own
You've dreamed about this moment for years and now its here. No one to tell you when to go to bed or class, no-one to tell you what to eat or what time to be home. Sound's great right? And it is. Living on your own for the first time is an exciting and sometimes scary time. What will it be like living with someone you don't know? How will you make new friends? What should you bring with you? Students across the country share their stellar tips for dealing with roommates, mastering creative microwave cooking and the importance of shower shoes. Plus, check out these funky tips for decorating your dorm room and some fun links to help you prepare for life on your own.
What was it like first going into Residence? Did you do anything to prepare?
Kevin Eagan is a junior Math major with a minor in communications at Greensboro College.
"I was extremely shy when I first came to Greensboro and being in residence hall helped bring me out of my shell a little bit and got me meeting people."
Genevieve Soriano is a freshman pursuing a Bachelor of fine arts in Graphic Design from Barry University in Florida.
"I found moving into residence took some adjusting because I am an out-of state student and it took a while to get to know my roommates and adjust to living with them."
Dan Foster is a senior at Northern Arizona University with a dual major in History and Communications.
"When I first came to school I lived in Kingsley Hall in residence. I just got out of the military so it was life as usual; it wasn't a big deal. I had already been accustomed to that lifestyle having gone through the military where during basic you pretty much live in one large room with a bunch of other guys. So, for me it was great rooming with just one other person."
Stephanie Gillie is a junior at Greensboro College in North Carolina majoring in elementary education with a psychology minor.
"As a freshman I found out I was going to be rooming with a senior and I was afraid how it was going to work out. To help the process we filled out roommate contracts. It is a questionnaire that you fill out the first week with your roommates that asks about your interests. Are you an early person or night person, when do you tend to study? And there are also questions about shared property issues and socializing in the room. The roommate contract is great because it gives you a chance to communicate with your roommate about these issues before the semester gets under way. Then your Resident Advisor holds onto the contracts and they can refer to them if there is an issue between roommates."
Marcy Pickett is a sophomore majoring in Social Work at Northern Arizona University.
"I think having a roommate was a good experience because you learn how to interact with many different people in different situations. Many of our classes are more conversation based rather than lecture style so living in residence helped me gain confidence to interact with a diverse group of people."
Katie Fleck is a senior majoring in Mass Communications at St. Cloud State University.
" I think that any student who goes to college should live in residence for at least one year. Otherwise, you won't get the college experience. No where else in your lifetime will you live with 50-60 other people and you know that no one is sleeping at 3:am. The majority of my friendships were made in the residence hall. Had I not lived in residence my first year I feel I would have had a lonely life up here."
What was the best thing about living on your own?
Stephanie Gillie: "The opportunity to truly gain responsibility and learn to set your own schedule and be accountable for what you choose to do or not to do. Plus, getting to know other students and making friendships."
Marcy Pickett: "Freedom. I gained my freedom. I was in an all girl dorm where I could grow and make mistakes in a safe environment. I had the opportunity to have new experiences but the safety of knowing if I needed help the Resident Directors were there."
Genevieve Soriano: "The best thing is that you are always near a lab and all the events that go on all year. I can walk over to the computer