• Gillian Ang

Living on Campus: A Home Away From Home



Picture this, it is week 3, you’re a freshie just newly settling into living on campus and your floormate invites you to see her room she just decorated. At first glance, everything seems perfectly normal: a collage of aesthetic pictures stolen from Pinterest on the wall, a neatly arranged bed, and an array of trinkets artistically placed on the window ledge. But wait, from the corner of your eye you notice something lurking in the upper left wall above her bed.


“What in the world is that?” you ask her, pointing at a picture of a…Tasmanian Devil?


She bursts into laughter,


“I can explain!”


“It was a gift from my friend who went on a trip to Australia,” she said, “back home I put it in the upper left corner of my room too so I just did the same here.”


Her picture of a Tasmanian Devil really reminded me of this letter board that I brought from home to my room on campus. I used to have it on my study table and I let my younger brothers write out motivational messages for me. In junior college, the message they curated for me was “hocus pocus you have now lost your focus” (yes, I know it is super motivational).


Coming to university, I did the same thing and gave them the liberty of picking a message to put on the letter board. Here is what it says now:

Great quote, right? This letter board sits directly above my study table here on campus so every time I study, I see this and think of home <3


Living on campus by yourself can be an exciting and scary experience. For many of us, this may be the first time we have lived away from our families. Personally, I am extremely close to my family so staying away from them for even one, let alone 5 days a week, took some getting used to. It was weird not having my rowdy younger brothers around all the time or hearing the nagging from my father to clean my room. And sometimes in the silence, I miss that rowdiness and nagging. To deal with the homesickness, bringing things from home, like the board, helps to remedy.


After seeing how my friend and I decorated our rooms, curiosity arouse as to how other students made their rooms feel like home. And so began my quest to interview students on what they add to their room to make it feel more like home and their thoughts on staying on campus. Disclaimer: All students reside in Cinnamon College!


Posters, Posters, Posters!

Student A: “I love posters! Some of these posters I actually brought from home while some are new editions to my poster wall. I really like this wall because even when I am in my bed, I can just turn to the left and see them. This section of my room is also where my friends will sit and hang out like a living room of sorts.


What’s your favourite part about living on campus?

I like having my own space and having control over my surroundings, I think I generally just like having this independence.



Home Food <3

disclaimer: this is not sponsored


Student B: “I always keep this cereal in my dorm room. The cereal really reminds me of breakfasts at home and the cartoon character on the box looks like my brother. This cereal is also the taste of my childhood!


What is your experience like living on campus so far?

It was a bit confusing at first like learning how to navigate the facilities and needing to keep up the daily habit of cleaning. But I like having close neighbours and the convenience of everything like if I want a snack I can just go downstairs and get one.



Jazz Up Your Room With Accessories!

Student C: “My mum came over a month back and she helped me to decorate my room. We got some plants and it feels a lot like home because at home we have a lot of plants. The bed sheets also have pictures of animals which reminds me of home because at home we have dogs. I even brought a soft toy from home too!


What is your favourite part of your room?

Definitely my bed! With the cushions, plants and fairy lights it has become a very cosy corner.



Fluffy Friends

Student D: “I have a bunch of soft toys at home so I brought some of them with me here. I also have these local snacks back from India that I brought over too.”


What do you like about living on campus?

I like how lively it is, I can go out at 11 pm and there will always be people around.



Home Simulation

Student E: “I arranged the furniture in my room on campus to simulate the layout of my room at home. I also brought things like a carpet and a chair that were originally from my room at home to my room here.


What’s your favourite part about living on campus?

I really enjoy the student life here and it reminds me very much of school where you’re always surrounded by people and there are always familiar faces whether it’s in the lift or from the same house as you.


 

It was so nice to be able to hear the different stories of the students I interviewed and learn about how their room reflects their home! I hope that reading this article has also given you some ideas on what it’s like to live on campus and some ways to feel less homesick.


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