Lizzie Conklin

You’re settling in with your suite — whether self-selected or randomly assigned, you might be feeling some awkwardness as you get used to living with your suitemates. Perhaps your towel fell down on your first trip to the shower or maybe everything has gone off without a hitch. Either way, it’s never a bad idea to dedicate some time to suite bonding. The WKND has been there, done it all and is here to offer insight into the best ways to get to know your new best friends!

1. Movie nights

A night in the common room crowded on the couch with eyes glued to a 12-inch computer screen is perfect for suite bonding. It’s a foolproof way to learn some important details about your suitemates. Do they talk during movies? What’s their favorite movie genre? Don’t forget to buy some snacks but not before chatting with your suitemates about what to get! If everyone can come to an agreement about what movie to watch, it’s sure to be a great night.

2. Debriefs

Chances are you and your suitemates don’t spend every waking minute together. A lot can happen in the time everyone is apart, so debriefs are necessary. After a long day (or night), reconvene in the common room to catch up. This can be a great way to stay up to date on your lives — social, academic and romantic. 

3. Game nights

“Catan,” “Codenames,” “Uno” and so much more from Mattel™. With any luck, the games won’t get too personal and everyone will have an excellent time. Bring out your suitemates’ competitive sides with a game like “Scattergories” or work together to save the world in an exhilarating game of “Pandemic,” with a side of “It’s Not That Deep.” Throw in some games like “Never Have I Ever,” “Truth or Dare” or “Cards Against Humanity” to relive the middle-school sleepovers you secretly miss but that feel oddly similar to college life. 

4. Interior decorating

*Read in a posh British accent.* Getting decorations for the common room or bedroom is at the top of many students’ to-do lists at the beginning of the year. Expedite the process and board an Uber or shuttle to visit Target, Ikea or another furniture acquisition destination. Brainstorm your vision en route, then pick out decor and practical trinkets to make your common room really feel like a curated home. This outing serves two purposes: bonding and aesthetic satisfaction. We cannot imagine a more splendid option.

5. Suite Spotify playlist

*Skip back across the pond.* Hopefully, your suite lives in harmony and everyone uses Spotify. If this is not the case, contact your dean ASAP. Otherwise, get your suitemates together. Compare music tastes, debate your favorite Taylor Swift era and create a group playlist! Throw in some wild card songs, personal and group favorites, classics and anything else you come up with. Now, you have a perfect playlist that you only like one-sixth of. Also, what 18-year-old listens to Steely Dan?

6. Suitemate trivia night

Pick a night, but not a Tuesday. Trivia Tuesday is overdone. So last Tuesday. The WKND has moved on, and so should you. Have each suitemate prepare a few questions of varying specificity about themselves then set up a Kahoot! or a Jeopardy-style trivia game to test each others’ knowledge. You’ll get to learn how little you know about each other! To increase the stakes, choose a prize for the winner. This could be dibs on a chore-free week. Or, punish the loser. Register the loser for Coursera’s CS50 class. The emails will never stop.

7. Suite deep clean

If you and your suitemates have a tendency to put off cleaning, a suite cleaning session might be for you. Blast your new playlist, roll your eyes and get scrubbing. Organize your own rooms, then work together on the common room. You’ll come out of the experience with a much cleaner suite, a sense of accomplishment and tighter bonds. And be confused as to how anyone ever made it to college with these Swiffer habits. 

There are plenty of other ways to get to know your suitemates. Whatever you choose, enjoy it and embrace any and all awkwardness! If you do in some terrible universe drop your towel, be grateful you cleaned the floors.