Residents

dorm room

Hello friends! I hope you all are getting excited for the holiday season and the last few weeks of the semester. As finals are approaching, I know stress levels are high and bank accounts are low. But what better way to raise spirits than to decorate your room with chic and cheap holiday cheer?

Now, know that there are some rules you have to abide by when hanging decorations (no live trees, doors must remain 70% free of decorations, etc.), but even when following restrictions, there are still great ways to spice up your space.

1. What a Merry Mantle! 

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I thought this was a super cute idea to hang on either the outside of your door or even on a spare wall inside your room. An even better idea is to use homemade stockings instead of paper ones. Put small trinkets inside for your roommate and sparkle it up; Santa will be sure not to miss this room!

2. Christmas Curtains

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Okay these ribbon-hung ornaments are super darling as curtains. Not only will all the colors surely sparkle throughout the room, but they are really easy too. Simply hang them from a curtain rod and make sure to stagger the ribbons’ colors and length. Best of all, you can get all the materials needed for this nifty idea for fewer than ten dollars!

3. Decorate your faux Christmas Tree!

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Just because you can’t have a REAL tree, doesn’t mean you can’t have a CUTE tree! There are lots of ways to recreate an evergreen in your room this year. Add a touch of Thyme Frasier Fir scent diffuser and you won’t even know the difference. Plus, no needles to clean up!

4. Pop of Holiday color

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One way to make sure your room doesn’t look like an elf’s purse exploded is to use a theme when decorating. Still go to the dollar store when buying decorations, but stick with one motif while shopping. Whether that’s a pattern like plaid, or a color like red, making sure they all coordinate is a sure way to stay chic.

5. Bling it out

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Nothing says style like silver & gold on Christmas. Grab a few cans of spray paint and you can make any cheap find a high-cost (looking) item. From desk accessories to picture frames, you can jazz it all up. The best part is you can use these items all year round! It’s festive, it’s cheap, and it’s high-fashion, baby.

Don’t let skimpy bank accounts get you down this holiday season. Let your creativity fly and decorate away!

Do you have decorations up in your dorm room? How are you decorating this year?

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We have all seen the plethora of tents spread evenly across the green in front of the Rondileau Campus Center last week, and I am at least hoping you majestic readers have heard what they were doing there.

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The BSU Social Justice League, in combination with the Community Service Center and the Student Government Association hosted their annual Tent City project to raise awareness about the issue of homelessness in the United States of America.

The Social Justice League’s webpage describe their Task Force to End Homelessness as such:

The central goal of this task force is to shed a regional spotlight on the issue of homelessness. We will use our expertise in teaching, research, and student engagement to benefit homeless people and service providers throughout southeastern Massachusetts. We will also work with local government and business leaders to develop and support policies that can end homelessness permanently. By involving our students in this most pressing and poignant issue, we will also develop a new group of scholars interested in pursuing housing and equality for all citizens.”

In my opinion, this explanation of the task force’s objectives and methods is an excellent source for those interested in getting involved with their organization, but I wanted to get a more personal touch on this very polarizing issue.

I interviewed several students sitting in the RCC, right next to the BSU Tent City project, asking about their opinions on the homeless problem in the United States. Students interviewed wished to remain anonymous.

What’s your opinion on the homelessness problem in America?

1 – “Honestly, people need to help themselves. It’s not my problem.”

2 – “It’s tragic.”

3 – “I really don’t know anything about it.”

All of these opinions tied in well with my interview with Jess, a Freshman and member of the Social Justice League.

What is Tent City? What is it to you?

“We need to bring awareness to the stereotypes set against the homeless. People think they are alcoholics or drug addicts, and not that some aren’t, but often these are just people that have fallen on hard times.

And so many people think they are just lazy, that they should ‘help themselves,’ but these are people that need help.

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We are trying to raise money for Our Neighbors of Fall River. I remember one story: there are families, entire families,  living in motels because their apartment was foreclosed upon. Their landlord was using their rent money for personal things instead of paying the building’s various debts. And so, because this man decided not to do something, now families are out on the street. It isn’t their fault, but now people are just expecting them to restart their entire life because of something that wasn’t their fault.”

What is the most difficult part of the experience?

“My parents took me camping a lot as a kid, so I’m used to sleeping outside.

The issues are the same: it’s absolutely freezing, and windy, and dark.

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But the biggest thing is the fear. You don’t know if someone’s going to come and slash your tent or take your stuff. Tent City has been happening for a few years, and we are on a safe campus, so I can only imagine the actual fears people might be facing when they’re living on the street.”

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Anything else to add?

“Forty percent of the homeless population are families. This is an incredibly important issue, and I hope the symbolic work we’ve done this week will reflect that.”

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There you have it folks. It was quite a week, so what have we learned?

At least from my perspective, a lot.

I hope you all feel the same.

What is your opinion on the issue of homelessness? Did you learn anything last week?

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Last week I wrote about preparing for being sick at school. This week I have been shuffling about sneezing and coughing on everything, super sick with a cold. For the past few days, the temperature in lovely Bridgewater has not gone above 40 degrees. Lucky me. I have been walking around looking like an arctic princess in a super long down jacket, clutching a hot tea in one fist and orange juice in the other.

Now that we all have colds, it’s time to prepare for winter. I have compiled some things about winter on campus to keep in mind:

1. Here is the perfect winter temp outfit go-to:

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1.  Long down jackets by Vero Moda and Uniqlo

2. Boots by Sorel

3. Boots by UGG Australia

4. Hat by Topshop

5. Ear Warmer by Modcloth

6. Replenishing color tinted chapstick by Burts Bees

7. Polish by Essie

8. Texting gloves by PacSun

2. Safety Escort:

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A good thing to keep in mind as a resident student on campus during the winter is our university’s safety escort! It gets dark way too early, and once the sun goes down, getting across campus is freezing and hostile. Luckily, by calling 508-531-1745 from 7pm-3am, you can get picked up safely to travel on campus. Save the number in your phone now! You’ll thank me later.

3. Places to get tea, coffee, and hot cocoa on campus:

You can find these in ECC, Tilly, Bear’s Den, the Dunkin Donuts in ECC and Bear’s, and at Starbucks in the library.

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Notice how Crimson, the only dining hall open late, is missing from this list? Who do I talk to about this, because sometimes a girl really needs a 9pm cocoa fix.

4. Check class cancellations! There is little wore than trekking through an arctic landscape to find that a class has been canceled and you just rushed through a 20-minute walk, risking slipping on ice and losing your extremities to frost bite. Nothing will make you more bitter. Luckily, our fancy new app should make checking cancellations a breeze!

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What are your suggestions for winter prep on campus? What is your favorite thing about winter at BSU?

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