Dorm Room and Bedroom Culture
It is common for new students to share a room with other university students. The number of roommates will depend upon the university, but will range anywhere from one to three. The most common setting is for two students to share one room. The room will have beds, desks, closets and storage compartments (drawers) for personal items. The furnishings will be plain but adequate.
A key to success in your studies is a good understanding and a positive relationship with your roommate. You will need to learn your roommate's schedule and activities in order to have a positive experience from the beginning. Your roommate may become your close friend or you may not spend much time together. It all depends on you and your roommate. Respect your roommate's possessions and privacy and ask your roommate to do the same for you. Some roommates are very trustworthy and some are not. A good rule to go by is "If you value something, keep it out of sight and under lock and key." This will keep your roommate from being tempted to take something that belongs to you.
If you discover that your schedule and your roommate's schedule conflict and you have little time to study, you will find the library a nice quiet place to get away and study. Some dormitories are not very quiet and if you need a quiet place to study, you may need to go to the library.
On the whole American females are more modest than American males. Males may wear little clothing while in their rooms. You will need to prepare yourselves because some will be more open than others. Feel free to continue to wear clothing as you are accustomed to wearing in your house or room.
Sleeping in American beds may be a new experience for some of you. American mattresses are usually much softer than international students are used to. Americans sleep between two cotton sheets. In the cooler months a blanket can be added for warmth. Bedding and electric blankets can be purchased inexpensively.
You may have the option of having a telephone in your room. You are responsible for the payment of the bill. If you decide you need a phone make certain that you and your roommate have an understanding of how the phone will be handled. Public phones are available and can be an option. Most dorm rooms automatically have a phone in them.
American males (and sometimes females) talk freely (and sometimes tend to exaggerate) about their sexuality. You will probably hear some graphic details of "last Friday night's experience." Sexuality in America is not like you have seen in the movies.
In most dorm rooms smoking is not allowed. Be sure and check the policy.
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