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Moving into a new place is one of the most exciting things about starting uni, but it is also quite a monumental task. Add a pandemic to the mix, and you have the perfect recipe for a stressful couple of weeks.
But worry not- here at King’s ResiLife we have compiled a comprehensive list of tips and tricks you can use to avoid any hassle and settle into your new home as quickly as possible. It is a by-product of our collective experience of living in student halls, so you know that these recommendations are worth a try!
- Door tags are a wonderful way to introduce yourself to your flatmates, and not to mention, they look extremely cute! If you are self-isolating, you can also put your social media handles on there so your flatmates can reach out to you online.
- Plants fulfil many purposes- apart from adding a pop of colour, they also keep the air in your room fresh and add a homely vibe. Cacti and succulents are extremely popular with students as they require minimal care and are also sold at low prices at local supermarkets.
- Photos of friends and family, or postcards of places you have visited are a great way to personalise the space. Websites like Snapfish will print your photos out for you and deliver them to your door. Photographs also go well with fairy lights and will look great on your notice board!
- Most rooms in residences have two main areas for storage- under your bed, and on wall-mounted shelves and cabinets. It is best to use the under-bed storage for larger items such as suitcases, and items you do not use often- for instance, you could store your winter clothes under your bed during warmer months. Shelves can be used for books and trinkets, or any other items you need often.
- Drawer dividers are an efficient way to organise underwear, socks, and other small items. They make it easy to find your things and utilize drawer space that otherwise might go wasted.
- Desk organisation units are a great way to make the most out of your workstation. Most stationery shops like Ryman and WH Smith sell file racks, bookends and pen stands in sets; consider buying these for a more cohesive look!
- A list of equipment you will need to maintain a clean bedroom:
- Multi-purpose spray
- Glass cleaner spray
- Microfiber clothes
- Dustpan and brush
- Optional: Mini vacuum
**Pro tips: Try talking to your flatmates about pitching in to buy a set of these for everyone’s use!
2. Make a cleaning timetable for yourself. Look at your university timetable and extracurricular activities and find the days which work best for you to clean do your laundry and freshen up your room. Your laundry day might be different than your cleaning day!
3. Here is the most efficient set of steps to clean your room, so that you don’t have to repeat any task:
- Dust: When dusting, make sure you work from top to bottom, left to right. This way you’re not scattering dust on surfaces you have already cleaned.
- Glass: Wipe mirrors with a microfiber cloth and some glass cleaner spray, also useful for picture frames.
- Wipe surfaces: Wipe surfaces using a j-cloth and some multi-purpose spray.
- Vacuum: After dusting / wiping, vacuum your room. Make sure you go under your desk too!
- Take out the trash!! Take the rubbish out your bin and replace the bin-liner. Make sure you take the rubbish to your buildings rubbish room and separate into recycling/rubbish.
4. Clean up spillages as soon as they happen. Take out old plates and used dishes when you are done eating- this way your room won’t smell of old food.
5. Since candles and incense sticks are not allowed in residences, you may use room spray or a reed diffuser to make your room smell nice. Reed diffusers can be bought at Sainsbury’s for £3.
We hope that these tips are helpful for you! Tag us on social media using #kingsresilife if you use these so we can see you thriving in residences!
- Flat iron
- A steak house that actually tastes alright while being economically viable, and eh, you don’t see that every day in London. Or, as they say it themselves, great steak, at affordable prices.
- A mouth-watering flat iron steak served with house salad for £10, accompanied by a choice of sides like dripping cooked chips, creamed spinach and market greens. This easily makes up for the fact that you can’t reserve a table, instead they have a nifty way that involves texting when there is a space available.
- They also offer free icecream! After your steak, you will merrily receive a Mr. Whippy-style caramel mousse in a mug, with rock salt crystals to scatter according to your whim.
- They have many restaurants within the reach of central London, located in London bridge, Covent Garden, Hackney and Spitalfields.
- The breakfast club
- This is probably London’s most popular all-day breakfast and brunch place. It’s been called many names, the ‘London must-do’, the ‘most amazing all-day breakfast’. And it’s not just the food that’s perfect. It’s also bright, colourful, saturated with cultural references and intriguing ornaments and memorabilia. If you are into the styles of the 1980s, or just wish to experience some pop culture, here would be the perfect place to walk down.
- Price range quite affordable, £12.50 for full Monty, which is one of the more expensive dishes.
- They have an all-day breakfast menu, including the classics, such as Eggs Benedict (£9.50), Berry pancakes (£9.50) and Avocado on Rye (£7.00)
- I recommend the All American (pancake stack, bacon, sausage, crispy homestyle potatoes, fried eggs and maple syrup); as well as the Full Monty, a deviation from full English (bacon, sausage, crispy homestyle potatoes, garlic mushrooms, hash brown, black pudding, beans, tomato, fried eggs and toast).
- These cafes are easy to find. They can be found all around London, Battersea, London Bridge, Soho and Spitalfields.
*This article was written prior to COVID-19 restrictions*
Are you ready for move-in day?
It’s so close now, you can almost smell it!
I’m Lukas, a second year Business student at King’s. Last year, I moved into King’s Residences, which meant moving away from home for the first time, so trust me, I know exactly how excited, nervous and maybe even a little bit apprehensive you’re feeling right now. Continue reading
Contributed by Maddie Jammeh, Residence Manager at Great Dover Street Apartments
The prestigious CUBO RA Awards is open to all Universities in the UK and Ireland. The award seeks to recognise the important contribution the Community Facilitators or Residence Assistants make to students’ wellbeing, and this year our very own Jessica O’Logbon is a winner!
Jessica is a medical student studying at King’s. Last year she was amongst some students from King’s who visited No.10 Downing Street and Parliament to help promote how BAME students can apply for medicine and diversify the profession.
I nominated Jessica for this award because I was able to observe her over the past two years working with new teams who had no knowledge or little experience in the Community Facilitator role. She is very passionate in her work and worked very effectively with the ResiLife team to support students at Great Dover Street Apartments and other societies she pioneers within King’s.
Jessica is dedicated to student experience and enjoys her role as a Community Facilitator. She has demonstrated this through her continuous engagement and commitment with the residents and others.
Thank you, and well done!
*This article was written prior to COVID-19 restrictions*
Post contributed by Julie, War Studies
Hi, my name is Julie from France. I am 18 years old, and I just finished my first year at King’s. I am studying War Studies, and all of my classes are at Strand campus.
When I arrived in London, I was still 17 years old. It was impressive to be in a huge international city, mainly because I come from a town in the South of France, which is not that big. I remember, it was like a dream, to be by myself not knowing anyone and having to get used to this new chapter of my life. This dream was real, and before I even realised, my life changed completely for the best. This first year was a fantastic year that I will never forget.
I stayed at one of the King’s residences taking care of under-18s. I was placed in an en suite, sharing the kitchen and the ‘living room’ with ten other under-18 students. In my opinion, the fact that everybody was around the same age made it easier to be well included and safe as minors. We all turned 18 at some point, but it did not change anything.
In that kitchen I met some amazing people who are now friends that I love a lot. Living with people is something unique, which creates links that will stay for a very long time. Since the beginning, we shared a lot of things, while respecting each other and our belongings. I think it is crucial to talk to your flatmates and establish some friendly rules to follow. Even if everyone gets along, it avoids potential conflicts. It allows everyone to live in a friendly environment, and that is why I have amazing memories in that kitchen. Every time one of us was celebrating his/her 18th birthday, we bought a cake and eating it all together. We were also organising movie nights or just little friendly parties.
If you just arrived, King’s activities, especially at the beginning of the year, are a fantastic way to meet a lot of friendly and kind people who can become your friends. Even after, throughout the year, in each residence, there are themed nights and activities to do. It is an excellent way to meet new people and free your mind from stress and anxiety.
Another thing that I appreciate being in one of King’s residences is having access to the BeActive program, which is free for students living in King’s accommodation. It is a friendly social part of King’s Sport organising events classes such as basketball, football, yoga, dance, pilates. The aim is really to enjoy and meet new friends there, no skills are required for anything. I even had the chance to be an Activator supervising the activities, and it was useful. I learned a lot of new skills and values!
If I had to tell you something before starting your first year it would be that: you don’t have to worry or stress about anything. This year was the best year of my life, being able to study what I like while living with amazing people. With some organisation, even if you have to study a lot, you can do so many things. You can be part of one of King’s societies, do exercise, do activities with other student and visit London, which is a fantastic city, especially in winter or at night it is magical!
I hope you will enjoy your experience at King’s.
Contributed by Konstantinos, 3rd year medical student
My name is Kostas, I am a medical student at King’s. 2018 was the year I started my own business called Student Essentials.
Don’t get too excited it doesn’t involve machine learning or artificial intelligence. It is a super simple business, yet it offers great convenience to our customers. We deliver all the essentials (like duvets, pillows, towels, kitchen items) to students when they arrive at their accommodation. It saves them time and money.
Looking back 2 years ago, I started from just having this idea and now my business is a recommended supplier of Bedroom and Kitchen Packs for King’s College London. I vaguely remember the period when I had just a couple of orders to having hundreds of orders going through our website. The reason for this is because it went by really fast, just a matter of a few days/weeks. I was the happiest person in the world when I received the first batch of samples from my suppliers. I had all different types of pillowcases, colours, pillow fillings etc on my hands to choose from. The only downside was my storage capacity, as I lived in en-suite single bedroom at great dover street apartments so all my friends started questioning how I was going to do this.
But that didn’t stop me from pursuing my goals. I knew this business had great potential and that students would benefit from this service. A few weeks later when I started getting hundreds of orders, it became apparent my bedroom could no longer be the place I store the orders. So I ended up renting a room at a big storage company and that changed everything. Things became much easier to handle now I had all the space I needed! Getting all this stock out in time for the student arrival was one of the biggest challenges. Luckily, I had the support from my two best friends that helped in delivering hundreds of bedroom packs to the students!
Although it is just me behind the business, I wouldn’t have been able to be where I am now without the incredible support from my family, friends and King’s College London. Kings’ strategic vision for 2029 is to foster the entrepreneurial spirit and that means I am (and even you if you want to become an entrepreneur) in the right place at the right time. Something that stood out to me, which you do not see often, is how willing the staff at King’s College London are to foster entrepreneurial ideas. I have had managers from residences spend hours with me discussing how best to launch my business, which is invaluable.
King’s Residences is a great place to start your entrepreneurial journey and I am thankful of the support King’s College London provided me with.
Apps to pass the time
Being stuck indoors doesn’t have to be all bad. The power of technology means there are millions of apps available to keep you occupied.
Whether it’s for mindless games or to train your brain to be more powerful, they’re ideal for times just like this. Below we’ve collated some apps to try out for various moods…
Houseparty | IOS/Android: Combining video chat and quizzes, this is perfect for big groups
Monopoly | IOS/Android: The age-old classic has gone digital (less opportunity for cheating mind you)
8 Ball Pool | IOS/Android: Well, we can’t go to the pub for a quick game, so compete from your room instead
Luminosity | IOS/Android: Challenge and improve your mind with a range of exercises and quizzes
Mini Metro | IOS/Android: A strategy simulation game about designing a subway map for a growing city!
The House of Da Vinci | IOS/Android: A bit different than the usual brain training games but with puzzles and mysteries to solve, it gets you thinking
Duolingo | IOS/Android: Brush up on your languages ready for when we’re free to fly again!
Ted | IOS/Android: Inspiring TED talks covering a host of topics, there’s no doubt you will learn something new
Khan Academy | IOS/Android: So many skills to learn and thousands of interactive exercises, videos, and articles at your fingertips
Glo | IOS/Android: Yoga, Pilates or Meditation, whichever you prefer this has unlimited classes to choose from
Overdrive | IOS/Android: Not got a kindle? Not to worry, Overdrive is stacked full of e-books
Colorfy | IOS/Android: Zone out and relax with some good, old fashioned colouring in
*This article was written prior to COVID-19 restrictions*
Post contributed by Lidia P. She is a 2nd Year Global Health & Social Medicine Student.
Life @ GDSA
GDSA is one of the best residences to live in if your main campuses are Guy’s and Waterloo. Isn’t it a dream to wake up 20 minutes before the lecture and make it to class on time with no rush? Not many university residences can be this proud of their location. Despite the large number of students residing at Great Dover Street, the atmosphere of the hall is always very peaceful. Wait until you see the view you can get out of your own window! Imagine waking up to the view of the Shard in the soft rays of the rising sun and watching the city light up slowly with dawn. This includes a free viewing of all the Shard light shows by the way! Or are you more of a sunset person? There are rooms, which offer that as well as a sneak peak of the London Eye. Continue reading
*This article was written prior to COVID-19 restrictions*
Post contributed by Adriana T. She is an undergraduate student at King’s, studying German.
Life in Moonraker Point
SE1 0FN – Your new postcode. By the time you are reading this, these six digits will not mean much to you but in a few weeks, you will know them by heart and they will be your new home. Moonraker Point is a hugely popular residence, not only due to its proximity to Guy’s Campus (Medicine) and Strand Campus (Arts and Humanities) but also thanks to the outstanding facilities, the views and the communal atmosphere. The greatest asset of the Student life at Moonraker Point is the big common room, including a pool table, ping pong and a big TV (and yes, there is Netflix). What I personally like most about the space is its diversity. Walk in at any time of day or night and you can find students studying, eating, watching TV, playing pool and even doing pre-drinks and parties on the Weekend. Twice a week, the common room is used for our very own #resilife events.
Tuesdays and Thursdays, you will find your CFs and RAs amongst the other students. Tuesday is always the time for tea and biscuits, where the atmosphere will be quite relaxed and everyone is unwinding over a cuppa. Thursdays, on the other hand, the common room might get messy as we get artsy and creative. What started out as ‘Art night’ has evolved into a creative hub with activities ranging from crafting, painting to designing mugs and T-shirts. Immerse yourself in the atmosphere while being inspired by your new life in London, your university and maybe even your new home. Hint: your artwork makes amazing and cheap decorations for your flat!
Living with other like-minded young adults might sound like a dream to some but it can also be a bit of a daunting prospect and I felt no different when I first arrived at Moonraker. But let me assure you that Moonraker offers one of the friendliest and most inclusive communities you will find. There is a sufficient support network in place to ensure that you will have a good time during your stay. A 24-hour reception is there for any urgent or non-urgent matters and queries and they are always happy to chat to you about anything. Why not pop down for a chat once you settled in? They love to get to know their residents better. Moonraker also offers a team of fully-trained RAs and CFs who will introduce you to your new residence, your neighborhood and will always have an open ear. Keep an eye out for their red jumpers and do not hesitate to ask them for advice or what’s on at the next art night!