Top 10 Dorm Essentials

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Whether you’re an incoming freshman or a rising senior, living in the residence halls can be a rewarding experience. Living on campus means you’re closer to Flagler events (hello, free massages and discount clothing from Flagler Legacy!). You also don’t have to juggle monthly bills, which is one less thing to worry about on top of your homework and presentations. Not to mention you can sleep in later because you’re closer to your classes.

With four years experience of living on-campus and one year as a resident advisor, I have an unnecessary amount unlimited wealth of information regarding dorm life. Today, I pass this information onto you.



10. Mattress pad 

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While we don’t offer the Swedish sleep system here, there is a saving grace: the mattress pad.

You’re going to be using your bed for a variety of different things. Whether you’re sleeping, studying or on a Netflix binge, I highly recommend a mattress pad if you want to make your bed the epitome of all things comfortable.


9. Shower caddy


  Boho-style wooden shower walls not included.

We don’t have community bathrooms and showers like a lot of big universities do (phew!). That being said, it’s likely that you’re going to be sharing a bathroom with three or more people. For the sake of organization, I recommend purchasing a shower caddy.

8. Lamps 


You too can attain this lived-in feel with a couple of cheap lamps. 

Chances are, you will have one main florescent light to illuminate your room. If you’re not a big fan of bright lighting, try placing a few lamps around the room.

7. Filtered water pitcher



The tap water in St. Augustine isn’t unpleasant, but if you prefer refined water, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to invest in a filtered water pitcher. I recommend Brita and Pur pitchers.  

6. Organizers  


Organizers: because otherwise you’ll only lose it when you need it the most.

In addition to managing your time wisely, the art of organization is the most important trait you’ll adopt in college. From important papers to pens and pencils, a couple of organizers can make a world of difference.

5. Mini-vacuum 


Oh, the convenience. 

As an RA, I can tell you that I get a lot of notes on my board about the vacuum. Regardless of my handy checkout sheet, the vacuum will likely come and go without a trace. If you feel the urge to clean a lot (like I do!) you might want to purchase a small vacuum cleaner for your peace of mind. I have this one.

4. A good pair of headphones  


No, not the white ones from the dollar store that tangle in 5 seconds. 

Picture this: you’re vigilantly working on your college algebra homework when someone starts having a phone conversation right outside of your door. You’re studying English in the library when the person across from you begins loudly grazing on a stick of gum. You need a way to tune it out before you lose your focus. This is what a good pair of headphones are for, amongst a plethora of other things. While you don’t need a pair of Beats to achieve this, you might want to spend $10 more for a pair that won’t blow out on you.

3. Toilet paper


Amazing grace, how sweet the roll. 

While we definitely get enough toilet paper in for everyone on our hall, it’s a good idea to keep a couple of spare rolls just in case we run out early.

2. Smelly good…stuff



Because our buildings are primarily composed of 19th century wood and coquina. 

 I know how hard it is to resist buying candles for your room.  I worked at a candle shop my first two years of college. From wax melts to room sprays, there’s a million others ways to freshen up your dorm. For the guys, smelly good stuff isn’t just for the ladies. Trust me. 

1. Coffee maker

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Meet your new best friends: Coffee and his cousin Espresso.  

I’m sure you’ve heard the jokes about college kids being hyped up on coffee. Let me be the first to tell you this is not a joke. With your campus meal plan, you’ll be credited a certain amount of “bugs bucks” to spend at the student center bistro. If you love coffee as much as I do, you’ll probably blow it all on Starbucks within the first few weeks. Bring your own coffee maker and brew away.

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