How to make a college room feel like home

by Kelly Kerrigan, Staff Writer

Living in the College Area is far from luxurious, usually very loud and not always as clean and cozy as the home you grew up in. No matter where in the world you’re traveling from to attend San Diego State, there will be times in college that you feel a little homesick.

It is easy to miss the comfort of your own bed, your parents cooking and the amenities of air conditioning, private washers and dryers and clean kitchens.

Living on your own in college is the first step into adulthood and whatever your future has in store, and finding a sense of home within your on-campus living can help you get through those days where there is no place you’d rather be than home.

When I moved to San Diego from Chicago, life became lonely at times, but with the help of pictures from home, vinyls on the wall and my childhood stuffed animal, I turned my tiny dorm room into my own little home.

The first step to finding comfort in your college living space is catering to your senses. One way to immediately remind yourself of your hometown is through touch, smell, taste, sounds and sight. 

Find a comforter or a pillow that reminds you of the bed you slept in at home, buy a candle off Amazon that smells like the one your mom uses, cook the food that’s notorious where you are from, listen to the music that reminds you of hometown memories, fill your room with photos of your city. You’ll subconsciously feel miles closer to home through these tiny daily reminders.

In a small dorm room, bare walls can feel unwelcoming and claustrophobic.

Another way to make any living space warmer, whether it’s a dorm or a house, is to fill your walls with artwork, posters, decorative lights or whatever it is that fits you and your roommates. Open walls can leave you feeling unwelcome in your own space, but wall art can change the environment of any room.

The next most important aspect is catering to the little things that act as self care. Buy a coffee mug that makes you smile every morning when you start your day. Pick up a succulent or plants from Trader Joe’s that give your room a fresh feel. If the fluorescent lighting installed in your room feels harsh, order colorful christmas lights or dim lighting that gives your room a cozy feel.

Keep your room tidy to keep track of all your belongings so you can always appreciate all of these little things.

College can be difficult — school gets hard, balancing a social life, work and studying can be overwhelming at times, but coming back to a room that feels like your own special place can make even the toughest days better.

Allowing yourself to feel comfortable while away at school will help you get through anything and doing just a few little things will make all the difference.