Well, since I got my 12 gal, I had to do something with my 5.5. Ariel, my female, as been living quite happily in a 2.5 cookie tub, but doesn't get the attention I've felt she deserved.
So, Brother, also in college, took her. I brought the 5.5 and most of the plants down from the bay and set the tank at his dorm. It's still planted, but I only left java moss, java ferns and a lone anubias in there. Also added a snail to help keep the glass clean. Also I tore off the background and arranged the plants and rocks down the middle of the tank because it's at the end of his desk next to a couch. it's arranged so that it can be viewed from three sides, with the hardware on a shorter end by the wall.
He's new to fish, but Brother is very excited as he really enjoys Ariel's personality. Also I made sure to set up this tank so that it's easy on a newbie. He pretty much just has to feed her and add some water once in awhile, because she's so small that her and the snail's bio-load will be taken care of by the plants and the filter. (When she was in the cookie jar we were doing monthly water changes for the same reason)
And as for Ariel, she still can't comprehend the amount of space she has. She loves the bubbles that come out of her filter, her caves, and watching Brother. I'll miss her, but I don't have the space for a 5 and a 12, and here she'll have more interaction.