Skip to content

A Semester in Door Tags

As the semester ends, I look back to all the wonderful times and memories I have experienced as a first semester freshman at Rochester. Starting from the very beginning—coming to Rochester, meeting my roommate and all our friends, getting to know my way around classes and college life, in general—it has been an amazing ride!

And to share with you (in the most original and cutest way possible) what the past four months have been like, for me personally, is through DOOR TAGS!

Orientation and welcome to the University of Rochester

Door tags on dorm door
The initial stage of the door tag story


All the Resident Advisors (RAs) on my floor made these creative door tags for all their residents, in accordance with our theme for Orientation, the Olympic Games (or the Orientation Games, because Rochester loves puns). They even added “Welcome to U of R” notes to each door, which I found extremely warm and welcoming!

Overall, my first month at the University was a blur—I didn’t even realize how quickly I adjusted to the college atmosphere, slowly finding my way into a close group of friends, and getting a feel of what classes were like. While I did feel out of place during the first week or so, in the end, everything fell into place, and I couldn’t have been happier about that. If you’re worried about making friends or not adjusting well, know this: The University has an extremely inclusive and diverse student body. You’re bound to find your squad (just like I did) and they’ll make you feel welcome if you do the same!

Our RA loves us!

Door tag with Minion drawing


After a month of getting to know all her residents, my RA, Annie (who’s awesome) made these special, individualized door tags for us, with a drawing of something that we love dearly. For my roommate, Liz, she drew a musical note because she loves music and everything about it. For me, she made a Minion, because I am obsessed with how cute they are (If you have read any of my other posts, you know how true this is.).

Ultimately, these door tags were great because they helped us get to know who our hall mates were and what they liked the most. This led to many impromptu conversations about Panic! At The Disco and the cuteness that are Minions.

Spread eco-friendliness

Halloween door tags
Halloween (featuring dancing skeletons)


These are the door tags (the ghost and the pumpkin) that I made for the people who are under my EcoRep-ship. An EcoRep is someone who is a part of Residential Life and works to promote a sustainable lifestyle in the halls. As the designated EcoRep for half of my floor, I made these door tags out of already-used paper, both to increase awareness about saving paper and to spread the Halloween spirit.

Starbucks baristas have a great sense of humor (and so do Liz and I)

Starbucks door tags


As we have previously established, I survive on caramel frappuccino, and my roommate on vanilla iced coffee. Thus, we end up spending a lot of our time chilling at Starbucks or doing homework outside. In accordance with tradition, most times I order something, the baristas at Starbucks put down the wrong name for my order (I’m guessing for comedic relief). It serves as a constant source of amusement for both Liz and I, which is why we decided to get two coffee sleeves from Starbucks and wrote down the worst possible misspellings of our name—Lyn for Liz, and Jay for me (Funnily enough, I don’t have a J in my entire name.).

Liz is extremely creative

Paper snowflake on dorm door
Our door, presently.


So when we came back after Thanksgiving break, everyone was extremely excited about winter and Christmas—you could see it all around campus. Liz, on a particularly normal day, decided to make a door decoration for our door: a white snowflake. As more people joined us in the lounge, the snowflake-making became an actual thing. A week later, the whole lounge was covered in paper snowflakes and streamers, and eventually, a Christmas tree.


Overall, I feel like the whole community at the University of Rochester has been such a positive part of my college experience. From the RAs to my hall mates and my “squad” of friends (especially  my roommate, Liz)—everyone is really accepting and open, which is something I find really valuable and amazing. So if you’re thinking about applying here, let me just say, you’ll love it, no matter what!

Also, if you want to know more about my experiences next semester, hang in there! Part 2 is on its way…

Return to the top of the page