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Moving into your Dorm - A Guide for First Time Students

This is the time of year when many students are moving into their accommodation for the first time. Some may choose to stay in catered halls and some may choose to feed themselves, but the process of moving into a room – i.e. the space where you will sleep, write and keep all of your things – remains much the same. Even with the increase in fees, and the expanding desire for a place at university, the process of moving into your first dorm remains incredibly similar. As such, here are a few tips to ease you into your new home.   When you arrive in your halls, regardless of where you might be attending, remember not to bring too many possessions. Student halls are usually simple residences, and you will easily fill the available space with the essentials. By all means bring a little decoration, a little flair, but the ten foot fish tank with selection of Mauritian aquatic snails may verge on overkill. While not only a space issue, the first few weeks of student living are a hectic affair and who’s to say that by the end of the second semester you will still need every item you originally bought with you. By the end of the year, it might look like dead weight as you need to move everything out again.     Conversely, do not forget to bring anything at all. The perils of too many things will be a lack of space and a great deal of lifting come the end of term, but not bringing anything at all could leave you stranded when you need it most. A selection of seasonal clothing, in a country where the weather can change on a spiteful whim, a good stash of stationary and your reading materials for the year. Don’t be afraid to kit out your room, but remember to find the balance between necessary and indulgence.      Possibly the least valuable things to bring with you are your most valuable possessions. Student living is a cheap and thrifty affair, full of bumbling incidents and casual losses. You don’t need to wander home from a heavy night’s studying to collapse through grandma’s rosewood apothecary table which you insisted was essential. Likewise, student halls may not be an impregnable Fort Knox – having little worth stealing is a useful security precaution, especially when life will be flying by too fast to notice anyway.     Any items which are left behind – a suit for formal occasions, your childhood teddy bear –are easily retrievable. When moving into student accommodation, one of the most useful lies you will learn is the necessary home visit. While you may be able to excuse your trip home with claims of needing a certain brand of toothpaste or to retrieve a particular outfit, it will also give you a chance to visit your family and take care of a large and increasingly worrying batch of laundry. When packing to move into students halls, don’t be afraid to forget anything. An item forgotten is far more useful than you might think.     Moving into student accommodation is an important time, the first chance to experience life all out on your own. This is quite possibly the first time you will have learned to pack away your life and unpack it in another place. Setting yourself some good ground rules now will benefit you in all future moves. Learning how to pack away a computer or how to best fit a bed sheet into a box will be vital when you’re moving into your mansion in twenty years’ time.