By Carlee Berkenkemper
Elm Staff Writer
One of my personal favorite aspects of a new academic year is an opportunity to freshen up my living space with new or newly arranged décor. From freshmen collaborating with roommates to create a cozy home for year one to returning students showing off their favorite decorations, here is a look at how students are styling their dorms across campus.
Sydney Christian and Jillian Brejnik are freshmen roommates in Minta Martin. “We met through the Facebook page and started snapchatting each other,” said Christian.
The two girls are living in a room intended as a triple that was converted to a double. The sloping ceilings and window nooks lined with potted succulents create an inviting setting.
“I’ve hung out with friends in here a lot, and I plan to do yoga since there’s so much room,” Brejnik said.
From bright accents to muted colors, the room is a a combination of their respective styles where they can both relax. The spacious dorm is brought to life with various potted plants and the addition of their third roommate, Theodore a betta fish.
While Christian and Brejnik have more space than the typical freshman housing options, sophomores Lanning Tyrrel and William Sears are truly capitalizing on space. The pair live with two other students in a Kent Crossing apartment the school leases to students. They have their own full-size kitchen, a washer and dryer, and two bedrooms and bathrooms.
Tyrrel said, “It’s quiet, so it feels like we are off campus, but we’re still close enough that we can easily walk to classes or see friends in the residence halls. We also have a balcony, which is nice to sit on in the mornings. Since it is an apartment, there’s this feeling of being grown up, and it’s nice to feel like I’m really taking care of myself.”
No matter how big or small your living space is, it is easy to make it truly feel like home by decorating with meaningful items.
Jainiel Johnson is a sophomore, resident of the newly co-ed Cecil house and the proud owner of perhaps one of the most unconventional dorm room accessories—a model of human teeth.
“This is a set of teeth I got from my dentist when I was 11 years old. I was in for a routine cleaning and saw this horrible pair of teeth and was like, ‘Wow, I want to keep this,’” Johnson said.
Despite having no personal interest in dentistry, Johnson, a political science and sociology major, remains fond of the mold, complete with its cavities and missing teeth. Most interesting, this is not the model’s first time within a college setting.
“I asked my dentist why she had them, and she said they were her first set of teeth she ever bought for college, and she gave them to me,” Johnson said.
For upperclassmen, they have several opportunities to curate a space that suits their desires. Savannah Masterson, senior, lives in Allegany and loves the additional storage space.
“I have lots of tea cups and used to keep them in a crate, so having the cabinet space is a big plus,” she said.
Western Shore suites are made up of four singles, two bathrooms with two closets in the common room and a kitchenette.
To make her room feel more personal, Masterson also decorated with photos.
” My room is full of photographs from my childhood, places I’ve visited as well as with friends and family. I also love lots of light in my room, so I have a string of lights that line two of the walls next to the window and have plants on my window ledge,” she said.
Whether it is with meaningful tokens, potted plants, choosing to live with close friends, or the addition of a small pet fish, there are endless possibilities to making your space on campus feel like home.