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M&S enterprise graduate Roxy Ryan shares top tips about the best uni items and how to make the most of your first year

What should be on every student’s must-pack list?

Having at least the basic kitchen essentials will make cooking much more enjoyable, and you can never have enough glasses for when people come to yours for pre-drinks. It’s a good idea to have spares of bed linen and towels in case the washing machine is being used when you need it.

How can you make your room more homely?

I strung up photographs of friends and family from home on fairy lights. I had lots of soft blankets and throw pillows and brought a diffuser that smelt like home. It’s also a good idea to have an air bed for when friends from home visit.

What’s not obvious but worth taking to your uni dorm?

I’m the biggest over-packer and moving to university was no exception. Storage in university accommodation is normally quite tight, so any storage hacks you can use like boxes under the bed or in-wardrobe shoe hangers will help you squeeze in everything you need in an organised way.

Anything you took but didn’t use?

For some reason I thought I needed to take a coffee machine. I probably used it twice before packing it up and leaving it to gather dust under my bed. No first-year student has time to be cleaning those things between lectures and nights out.

Any advice for a first-year student?

You get out of university what you put in. So get out of your comfort zone – try new things, meet new people and say yes. It’s easy to stay in your room, but that’s not going to give you the best years of your life!

Words: Miranda Eason and Roxy Ryan


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