Invest time into knowing the temperatures all year round at your school. Pack for warm and cold weather, especially if you aren’t going to be going home frequently.
You dorm is you new temporary home so make sure you have everything you could possibly need. When you arrive, if you realize something doesn’t have utility or there isn’t room for it then you can always send it back home.
One thing to keep in mind is not to over pack, if there are things you usually don’t wear at home, you probably wont wear them at school. There are many things that I have brought and just create clutter.
Standard dorm rooms are usually not big, so minimize the space you take up.
Forgetting things at home can be a hassle to retrieve the further from home you are. So make sure you have everything you NEED before you leave.
Electronics: Here are some of the electronics I have found important or useful at school.
Fan/Heater: If your dorm doesn’t have central air or heat you should be equipped to keep your room cool in the warm weather and warm in the cold weather.
TV/Video Games: This isn’t necessary but there is plenty of down to at school. And it is always nice to take a break and play some games or watch TV.
Fridge: This is very important if you want to keep food or drinks in your dorm.
Microwave: Although you may have a meal plan you probably wont want to eat in the cafeteria all the time. Microwavable meals and snacks are great to keep around when you are in a time crunch.
Computer: I recommend a laptop over a desktop. It is more convenient and you may need to bring it to some classes. Make sure you also have all applications such as Microsoft installed before classes start. Most classes will require these products.
Chargers: Don’t forget any chargers at home! You don’t want to drive hours out to school and find out you cant charge your phone until you buy a new charger.
We have all heard of the “freshman fifteen”. But if you eat well and stay out of the cafeteria as much as possible, and eat in your room, you wont have much to worry about. I recommend keeping a lot of non-perishable foods in your room for easy access. Unless you are an early sleeper, there typically isn’t a lot of time to grab breakfast before class so keep anything you can munch on before class. Microwavable meals are always helpful to have if you are caught with ten minutes to eat lunch or dinner. And ALWAYS keep cases of water in your room. I have heard people keeping refillable water bottles as well, which may be more of a hassle to maintain but are definitely helpful to have in class.
All dorms come with school furniture. There is typically a desk, dresser, and bed. Bringing storage containers helps keeps things organized and more accessible. This will limit the clutter and leave you with more space. For instance, I have four stackable, pull out draw containers that fit under my bed, on top of furniture, in my closet, or stacked anywhere (see pictures below). I keep things from books, shoes, food and clothes in them to since there isn’t enough room in the dresser and desk drawers. I highly recommend these stackable storage containers but there are many options for storage. There are also other methods of storing. There are storage bags that fit under your bed, and storage bins as well.
First of all, if you don’t know how to do your laundry yet, its time to learn. It is very simple and easy to pick up. Keep plenty of detergent, dryer sheets, bleach, and any other laundry products you will need. There are different types of detergents that you should look into. There is standard liquid detergent and small pods, or small individual load packets of soap. Pods are less messy and more convenient.
I highly recommend buying a tide to go stick. Tide to go stick is a convenient stain remover that you can take anywhere.
Second, make sure you have to right laundry basket or bag. I have had more success with the pop up basket (pictured below) , for the bag I previously owned had ripped. Most students wash their clothes about once every week or two, depending on their time availability and amount of clothing.
Load up on cough drops, tissues, Advil or Tylenol, vitamins, and medication to keep you healthy year round. Getting sick at school may prevent you from attending class, and missing class can be highly detrimental toward your grades. Make sure you check in with the school’s medical center too. There is paper work to submit especially if you have any health issues.