Dorm and Apartment Essentials

One great thing about living on campus is that you have the freedom to do pretty much whatever you want with your living space. There are no parents to tell you what you can or can’t have in your room! During my time as a student at Illinois, I’ve lived in apartments and dorms, and I have gotten a pretty good idea of what you need for a nice environment to live and work in!

Posters – fill up those walls!

For some strange reason, a lot of my past and present roommates don’t put posters up on their walls. Fill those bare walls up! It’s nice to look at and makes your room feel like a home. I find most of my posters on Redbubble or Amazon, but the Illini Union Bookstore has a great selection, too. Since I’m an Astronomy major, I’ve amassed a collection of space posters to put above my desk.

Use whiteboards!

Whiteboards are great for writing things down or for planning your week or month. Every month, I have a bunch of meetings that I need to remember to attend. It’s nice to have something I can simply glance up at on my wall instead of flipping through an online calendar.

Smart TVs!

When I first came to college, I cancelled my Netflix subscription. I wanted to focus purely on school and have zero distractions. As a result, I found myself burnt out pretty quickly – it’s important that you take time to relax!

Having a smart TV or a Amazon FireStick in your room is a great way to blow off some steam. I use mine to watch a movie after a long day of work or play music while I’m hanging out with friends in my room. Work hard, but make sure you’re not working too hard!

Instruments – if you play one!

If you play an instrument that you can fit in your room, definitely bring it to college! You’re at the University of Illinois primarily to get your degree, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have hobbies on the side. It’s great to do other things, learn new skills, or pick up things you stopped doing in the past. I quit playing the guitar in 9th grade, but I made the impulse decision to bring my old guitar to college. I’m so glad that I did!

As a college student, I love having the flexibility to customize my room. I like my room here much more than my one at home – after putting some effort in, I hope you do too!



Class of 2022
I grew up in Hong Kong, China, and I’ve come across the world to Illinois to major in Astronomy in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. I’ve always thought outer space is super cool, and I love that I’m learning everything that I can about it at Illinois.

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