Freshman year, my parents flew with me over to Amherst. They rented a car and helped me move in and buy the necessities. As soon as they saw my room, the look of my mom’s face said it all; I was going to live in a matchbox. The room wasn’t only oddly L-shaped, it was small and didn’t have much room…for anything! She actually took that chance to smugly ask me in Cantonese, “Wanted to leave home,  did you?”  She cackled on her way out.

Yes, freshman rooms can be annoying. They can be small, stuffy, have extremely thin walls….or even resemble a large metal crate. (Cough, Waldorf dorm.) HOWEVER, living in the dorms definitely allowed me to make lasting friends. Freshman year is sometimes a hit-or-miss, because colleges usually randomize who they put together in a room. Thankfully, I got along great with my roommate. She was from NY, and through her, I met her friends that also went to our school. The best parts of living with new friends are the hilarious memories you’ll make together. I vaguely remember sprinting across the quad because my friends were playing Humans vs. Zombies. I believe it was because they started groaning, “Fresh meaaaat…!” Needless to say, I was outta there.

Living together allows easy meal times and outing organizations. In my sophomore and junior year, we would occasionally gather food and cook dinner together. Junior year, we lived in a suite and made Sunday brunch together every other week. Even this year, I’m situated near my close friends, so we head to the dining hall together. It’s fun; we hang out in each other’s rooms, borrow dish soap from one another, and occasionally chase each other down the halls.

And don’t worry too much about homesickness. It happens, but the friends you’ll meet will help you with that. After all, most of them miss home, too. So, before you pack every little thing…or all your game systems, you want to check the floor plan of your room. How big is it? Are you sharing space? Although I would have loved to bring my PS3 for my downtime, I have no way of getting a television, annnnd it would just clutter up my room. Be practical. Ask yourself: will I need it? Can I live without it? Ask yourself that before you decide to bring your gigantic teddy bear that takes up half your bed. I don’t know about you, but I am NOT sharing my twin size bed with ANYBODY. Even Mr. Snuggles.