In all the excitement of starting college, freshmen often forget they are leaving behind all the comforts of home. No parents to do laundry or bug about homework, no 24/7 kitchen stocked with snacks, no privacy in cramped quarters - plus many freshmen are unprepared for sharing thinks like bathrooms and the common room television. But with the right accessories, a dorm room can convert into a comforting retreat from the craziness of college life.
Here's our top 10 list of dorm room must-haves to help 2011's incoming freshmen turn their dorm rooms into a home-away-from-home.
Alarm Clock and iPod Dock
With no parent present to nudge you awake in time to make it to classes, a reliable alarm clock is the No. 1 college survival item -- especially one with an iPod dock that lets you wake up to your favorite tunes. We dig this little number because it's got two separate alarm settings to accommodate varying class schedules.
Seen here: Sony AM/FM dual alarm clock-radio with iPod dock(Best Buy, $75)
Cold drinks, fresh produce and frozen treats whenever you want -- a small fridge is an absolute necessity for those late night study sessions. Our pick also pulls double-duty as a dry-erase board.
Seen here: Emerson compact fridge with dry-erase door(Target, $99)
Whether tuning out dormitory noise or showing your roommate some consideration, headphones always come in handy at college. We selected these for their novelty appeal and their reasonable price - plus they deliver a killer bass.
Seen here: M&M headphones(Urban Outfitters, $10)
Closet storage solutions
It's no secret that space is limited in dorm rooms, and no place is more limited than in the cramped closets. This handy hanging storage organizer holds shoes, sweaters, accessories -- and it's cute too.
Seen here: Smart Carousel organizer(Bed Bath & Beyond, $30)
Before you fade away under the oppressive glow of fluorescent lights overhead, do yourself a favor and pick up a couple desk and floor lamps for your illumination needs. While there are endless options for your general lighting needs, we think funky party string-lights are a must-have that most won't think to get. Seen here: Paper lantern string lights(Target, $13)
Up next: More dorm room must-haves for college freshmen >>