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4 Healthy Meals from the Dining Hall

September 26, 2012

Yale University - Undergraduate Commons Dining Hall - New Haven, CT

Choosing a meal in the dining hall can be a daunting experience.  Between the tendency for crowds and lines and the fact that you’re frequently rushed at meals (from homework, to getting to class on time, to extra-curricular groups, some days it’s hard to even remember to eat) finding a meal that’s balanced and healthy amongst the abundance of pizza and chocolate chip cookies can be a chore.  The American Food and Drug Administration recommends adults take in approximately 2,000 calories per day, give or take depending on their level of physical activity and other individual aspects of their health.  Below is a meal suggestion for each meal of the day (with an approximation of the number of calories), averaging out to a day’s worth of 2,000 calories.

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5 Ways to Green Your College Life

September 18, 2012

West recycles

Whether you are a pro at living a green lifestyle or you are completely new to the concept, college is a great place to practice environmentally-friendly habits.  Below are five simple tips to help you have a green college experience.

1. Recycle Whenever Possible

Recycling is the most basic (and easiest!) way to green your college life.  Recycling is of the utmost importance, as the United States Environmental Protection Agency cites that recycling not only helps to conserve natural resources, but also decreases greenhouse gas emissions, prevents forms of pollution, and stimulates the economy.  Many college campuses make recycling very simple, providing recycling bins throughout dormitory buildings and across their campuses.  Be sure to check where your school’s recycling facilities are located.  Also consider investing in some bins for your dorm room to organize your recycling.  If you provide yourself with the opportunity to separate your recycling from your trash, you are more likely to regularly recycle items such as used paper and plastic bottles.

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5 Things to Consider When Deciding to Transfer

September 5, 2012


Deciding to transfer to a different college is a very serious decision and a sometimes confusing process.  While the process has its similarities to applying as a freshman, there are a few significant differences that in many ways make the experience more complicated than your original applications were.  While your SAT/ACT scores, high school transcript, and high school extracurricular activities are still requested by most colleges, additional factors such as college GPA and transcript and college extracurricular activities become determining factors, as well as, most importantly, the reason why you are choosing to apply as a transfer student.  In many ways, personal essays come to the forefront in the transfer application process, especially due to the limited number of spaces for transfer students at many schools.  While freshman classes are allotted a certain size, spots for transfer students are frequently affected by factors such as students changing programs within a school and taking time off or transferring out of a school, making the number of transfer students a school can accept frequently low.  Below is a list of 5 tips to help you navigate your decision to apply as a transfer student.

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Fire Safety in Dorms and Off-Campus: Facts to Keep in Mind

August 17, 2012


While locating the nearest staircase and exit may not be at the top of your agenda on move-in day, it probably should be.  According to the National Fire Protection Association, there are approximately 3,800 university housing fires each year, which factors out to a rate of about one fire per university campus in the United States.  While this figure may seem shocking, it is a reality that you should prepare for when moving into any new residence.  After moving into an off-campus apartment my sophomore year of college, I experienced two fires in the basement of my building, and while no damages were incurred either time to my unit, those living in the garden-level units did face damages.  Below is a list of ways to stay safe and help to prevent fires in your dormitory or apartment building.

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The 5 Things You Need To Do Before College Move-In

August 16, 2012

Move In 2010

So you’ve chosen what you need for your dorm, studied up on move-in procedures, and made your moving-in arrangements.  What’s left to do before you move into your dorm?  Here is a list of a few items that may have slipped your mind:

Check your student account and billing status

This is a crucial step to do before arriving at your dorm on move-in day.  Many colleges have rules stating that student accounts need to be settled prior to the student moving in.  Check your college’s policy, and then check on your tuition balance.  It is much easier to settle any disputes regarding billing and financial aid in the weeks prior to move-in than during the move-in period.

Get a checkup

Most colleges require you to provide proof of a recent physical exam and immunization history (especially if you plan on living in a dorm).  It can be easy to lose track of health forms amidst all of the other tasks you need to accomplish prior to move in, so be sure to take care of them as early as possible to ensure that your physician’s office has time to fill out the forms and that your college has time to process the information you provided them.

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Decorating Your Dorm: 5 Items to Bring

August 1, 2012



Decorating your dorm room can be one of the most fun parts of moving in.  While it can be nerve wracking and occasionally stressful if your tastes clash with your roommates, there are so many fun dorm solutions available to make your room fun, cheery, and cozy.  Below are a list of five tips to take your room from functional to fabulous.

1) A small rug

Many dorms have wall-to-wall carpeting, which is great at softening sound in buildings and warming up rooms.  Unfortunately, these carpets can sometimes be a bit scratchy on bare feet, worn looking, and unpleasant to the eye with the color combinations.  A great way to soften the floor surface is to buy a small rug to place next to your bed.  This way, if you have sensitive skin your feet will not be bothered by the harsh carpet and you can choose whichever color or pattern you desire.  Many dorms use linoleum tile instead of carpeting, which makes investing in a small rug even more necessary.  Stores catering to dorm shopping and corresponding online retailers usually carry small size, affordable rugs around back-to-school time for this purpose.

2) Extra Storage

Having extra storage will become necessary after a few months of living in your dorm.  Most dorm rooms provide a basic bureau and a desk with a few drawers which will fill up quickly.  Investing in some small shelves or a small set of drawers will keep your room looking neat and tidy.  Retailers such as The Container Store, Bed Bath and Beyond, and Target are good places to look for small dorm storage solutions.

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Five Perfect Plants for Dorm Rooms and Apartments

July 18, 2012


Plants are a great way to add style to a room.  Not only are they beautiful to look at, they create a relaxing atmosphere and are fun to care for.  While tending to a plant can be a daunting task at the start, there are many easy to care for plants which require little to no care at all.  Below is a list of five plants which would look fabulous in any dorm or apartment!


Bamboo is a great plant choice for both dorms and apartments due to its easy care requirements and compact size.  Bamboo is very low-maintenance, requiring only weekly waterings.  It does best in indirect sunlight, making it great for all dorm rooms and dorm surfaces (it can rest on your desk, bureau, beside your bed, etc.) Bamboo is sold at a wide range of retailers (many supermarkets even carry it) and varies largely in size depending on how many stalks you purchase.

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Dorm Shopping Guide: The 10 Things that You Need

July 9, 2012

Drexel Dorm Room, Myers

Buying things for your dorm room can sometimes be a confusing process.  Between what schools recommend you buy, what retailers tell you you need, and your own personal likes and dislikes, shopping for your dorm room can quickly escalate into an overwhelming situation.  Rather than automatically surrendering and filling in the card in the mail your school sent for a pre-made dorm kit (although these dorm kits are a great idea if you don’t feel like the hassle of shopping!) check out the shopping list below for some essential picks to make your move-in easy.

1. Twin XL Sheets and Pillows

Twin XL sheets and pillows are the most essential items on this list for a comfortable stay in your dorm room.  Most dorm beds are Twin XL size; Twin XL measures approximately five inches longer than regular Twin mattresses, and therefore regular twin sheets (especially fitted sheets!) will not fit the mattress.  Be sure to look closely at any sheet sets you’re considering to make sure that they are available in this length.  Many stores which specialize in dorm shopping, like Target and Bed Bath and Beyond, group their Twin XL sheet sets together to make browsing easy.  Online/Catalogue retailer PBTeen also has an extensive selection of Twin XL sheet sets on their website and in their catalogue under the PBDorm Section.  Most schools do not provide pillows, either, so be sure to pick up a few while you’re out!

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Preparing for a Move: What to keep in mind to save time, energy, and money

June 22, 2012

Summer is a popular season for moving to a new apartment. That being said, the popularity of moving during this season can add a lot of stress to your move. From scheduling internet installation to trying to move your futon, everything starts to feel more difficult when you are one of many trying to do the same thing simultaneously. Below are some tips to avoid feeling overwhelmed and save money during your move-out.

Getting Ready to Make a Move

  1. You can never make a phone call too far in advance!

This advice can make or break your move-in day. It is never too early to call to schedule appointments for the services you need to move out or move into your new apartment. Calling in advance for movers, cable/internet installation, etc., can save time, money, and stress. Not only are you more likely to secure your preferred time for a service, but you will also find out sooner if the company you were relying on is already booked, allowing you to schedule backup plans. Also, be sure to call ahead before the first day of your lease for any utilities you need to activate to ensure that your apartment is move-in ready when you arrive.

2. Stay Organized!

With all of the small steps required in moving, it is easy to accidentally overlook a small task. Before packing or preparing, spend a few minutes writing up a memo outline for yourself of everything you need to schedule and accomplish to be sure you address everything.

3. Start looking for deals!

Moving can be costly. Start looking for deals for every aspect of your move. One area to consider? Boxes. Boxes can be surprisingly expensive, especially if you are wrapping fragile items such as glasses and dishes which require additional packaging. Sometimes moving centers such as U-Haul sell pre-packaged box sets, including boxes, bubble wrap, tape, and other packaging accessories. These are usually a much better deal than buying everything separately. Plan ahead as to what type of packaging materials you need so that you can better look for value in the weeks before your move.

4. Don’t forget to alert everyone of your move-out!

In many ways moving out of your current apartment is more important than moving into your new home. Be sure to call and cancel any utilities that aren’t included in your rent! Also, contact your landlord or property manager regarding any building-specific instructions you need to adhere to. For example, some buildings have tarps that should be placed on floors during moves. You can also check for when to expect and how to obtain your security deposit.


Go On a Vacation This Summer!

June 8, 2012

Summer Vacation

Summer is a great time to travel! Between the flexibility of summer vacation scheduling and the (generally speaking) better weather, traveling in the summer can be a fun and fulfilling way to spend your summer vacation.  While traveling can be expensive, there are many options for students that can make travel more affordable.  From tour group companies to inexpensive student lodging, there are many options for students looking for an affordable vacation.

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