Top 14 Must-Have Dorm Essentials for Rowan University First-Year Students: A Parent’s Guide to Starting Strong

As the last beach breezes begin to blow, college move-in creeps up closer and closer. Many students are returning to their own stomping grounds here at Rowan University. However, much of the student body comprises first-year students heading into the unknown as they begin their higher education careers. Outside of books and other stationery, there […]

First Year Voices: Radio/Television/Film Major Sincere Silvera

Sincere poses on the stairs in the back of Bunce Hall.

Today we talk to first-year student and on-campus resident Sincere Silvera. Sincere is a Radio/Television/Film (RTF) major from East Orange, NJ (Essex County). Sincere is a first-generation and EOF student. 

Sincere poses in front of Robinson Hall.

What do you like about living on campus?

Well, I live in a single room. It’s pretty good, you know, I can just do whatever I want in my room. I don’t have to ask permission for nothing, nothing like that. I don’t have to ask somebody, “Can I have a person over?” I can have somebody over whenever I want.

How are you enjoying your classes so far? Are you taking RTF classes or just general education classes?

I am [taking RTF classes]. One is Foundations and Media and that one you explore the technological side of it, like this is what a camera angle is, this is what a shot is, this is what a frame is, this is the science behind audio waves and you know, frequencies and stuff. And then I have [Applied Media Aesthetics: Sight, Sound And Story] and you know, all that good jazz. So it’s like, how do these things create emotion? How does this camera angle make you feel and things of that nature? So I’m loving that and then all the rest of the classes, they cute, you know, I’m just trying to get through. 

Sincere poses in front of Wilson Hall.

What about what expectations did you have for Rowan before you got here?

Well, that’s a good question. I expected it to be a social environment where I could meet new people and have lots of different conversations, conversations I probably never would have thought I would ever have. I expected to make connections and learn some things as it relates to what I want to do moving forward with my life.

Have you been able to be social and meet new people? 

I definitely have. There are many opportunities, especially on ProfLink, where you find out the different events going on like karaoke — so you know Imma show up to the karaoke, I’m gonna show out. Cooking classes, movie nights, different little interesting things. 

Sincere poses on the Prof statue.

What was your favorite event that you’ve been to so far?

I’m gonna say karaoke [Prof’s Spotlight] because I really enjoyed myself. I had a really good time at karaoke. I could express myself on a stage and show my little performance side a little bit. That was good. I’m not just in the audience. I’m gonna be on the stage with a microphone over my mouth going off. I last did Nicki Minaj’s “The Night is Still Young.” It was an amazing experience. 

Was there an experience or a moment at Rowan that made you feel like this is home?

I actually want to say no, but in a good way. Because at home … there’s not as many fun things and events or opportunities to do things like that. And here there is. So I’d like to say that this is very different from home, and I’m having a lot more fun here.

Sincere poses in front of some leafy green plants.

Were you nervous to start at Rowan?

Yes. I could say there were nerves in certain areas. I wasn’t nervous, like, in the sense of, “Oh, I’m like, so scared to like, you know, go out there. I’m not going to do nothing.” That wasn’t me. I was like, “Ok, I’m excited.” I turned any nerves into excitement if there were any nerves. So I was more excited than anything else. But if I was nervous about anything, I probably was a little nervous about whether I chose the right major for what I want to do with my future, because that’s like, what’s most important to me?

Final thoughts?

Even though I feel like it might be easy as a freshman, or a first-generation student or whatever, just going into college and experiencing that whole like situation with so many people, the events, the organizations, the clubs and everything might throw a person off. I think that at the end of the day, even though you do want to experience and you do want to have fun, and I’m all about it, at the same time, I think it’s important to manage that. Yes, I can be a very social person. I can have friends and things of that nature. But I cannot let that take over my life. I cannot be thinking about that 24/7. I have to also keep in mind my passion, what I want to do, the type of education that I want, as an individual. So sometimes, you know, not everybody’s gonna like you so you don’t want to think about, “Oh, what friends am I gonna make? How am I gonna make them?” every day. Sometimes it’s like, “ok, maybe I don’t need any friends.” Maybe I’m gonna just go to this event and sit down because I want to be there, or maybe I’m going to get up on the stage not because I want to impress people, but because I want to get on stage and express myself and have a good time. I feel like that if there’s anything that I want to say about being a first-year student, it’d be that.

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Edited by:
Rachel Rumsby, junior communication studies and public relations double major

Interview and photos by:
Stephanie Batista, junior music industry major 

First Year Dorm Survival Kit

Exterior shot of Holly Pointe Commons.

Don’t know what to pack for your dorm? We’ve got you covered. Take a look at this list we’ve compiled to help you prepare for your first year. 

Interior shot of a Holly Pointe Commons dorm room.
  1. Storage. Whether it’s bins or under-the-bed trays, it’s always a good idea to make sure everything has its own place. Storage containers will also help to keep your dorm clean and leave more room for yourself. 

  2. Desk Lamp. Keep your workspace bright for maximum productivity. 

  3. Power Strips. Since Rowan’s dorms don’t allow extension cords, it’s important to pack power strips so you’ll never run out of outlets and can keep all your electronics charged. 

  4. Aspirin or other pain relievers. It’s always good to be prepared, you never know when a headache could occur.

  5. Posters/Art. Keep your dorm totally you. Express yourself!

  6. Fan. Remember to stay cool. Research shows a cool room helps you maintain sleep throughout the night. 

  7. Laundry Basket. It keeps your clothes off the floor and it’s easy to carry your laundry. 

  8. All-purpose Cleaner and Paper Towels. Don’t let dust collect, a clean space is a comfortable space. 

  9. Umbrella. Don’t get stuck walking to class wet in the rain. 

  10. Calendar/Planner. Stay up to date with your assignments and schedule. With all this new freedom, it’s easy to fall behind. 

Start your Rowan career off on the right foot. If you still don’t feel prepared, there are plenty of great resources online (like this post) to help you out. See you soon, Profs!

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Story by:
Caitlyn Dickinson, senior public relations major

Related posts:

Freshmen, Don’t Freak! It’s Easy to Eat

Inside Look: Holly Pointe Commons

Advice for Incoming Freshmen from Upperclassmen

6 Tips To Live More Sustainably in College

Want to do your part in helping the environment? Here are some things that can help you be a more sustainable college resident!

  1. Recycle

    This is the most obvious and easiest way to do your part in helping the environment! Make sure to separate (and clean) your recyclables from your usual trash waste.

  2. Try Meatless Mondays (or any day!)

    By not eating any meat or meat by product once a week, “The U.S would save 100 billion gallons of water, and we would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 1.2 million tons of carbon dioxide” (Huffington Post). Going meatless every Monday is a quick and easy way to make a big difference.

  3. Swap Disposable with Reusable Coffee Cups 

    As college students, we love our coffee. That being said, invest in a reusable coffee cup (and straw)! It helps save the planet and saves you some cash as many coffee places will offer you a discount for bringing in your own cup.

    A Rowan student sips coffee at a local coffee shop.

  4. Turn Off and Unplug 

    Make sure to unplug any appliances you’re not using and remember to turn off your lights when you leave the room! One of the leading factors of climate change is carbon emissions caused by electrical production. By turning off your light, you’ll be helping to do your part.

  5. Reduce Paper Waste 

    Instead of using paper towels to clean with, try switching to biodegradable and reusable wash cloths or kitchen towels! Try reading your textbooks as e-books instead of paperback. You’ll save money and the planet at the same time!

  6. Get Involved

    There are many ways to get involved just by yourself, outside organizations or even in a club on campus such as the Rowan Environmental Action League

There are plenty of small ways to make a big difference when living in college. Try some of these out and recommend them to a friend or roommate in order to live a more sustainable college lifestyle!

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Story by:
Bianca Torres, senior, music industry major