The Freshman Survival Guide: 8 Essentials To Bring From Home
THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS when it comes to making your first year at college comfy, cozy and connected. My College Guide has put together a list of the basics you’ll need to feel at home. To see more lists of what not to leave behind, go to mycollegeguide.org and type in “packing list.”
- HEALTH AND BEAUTY: Along with the shampoo and conditioner, remember some of the smaller items like dental floss, razors and tweezers. Be prepared for those days when you’re feeling under the weather and keep aspirin, a thermometer and cold medicine handy —and don’t forget Band-Aids.
- CLEAN LIVING: Even though your mother won’t be there to nag, you’ll want to keep your room clean. Consider packing cleaning supplies like air fresheners, a floor duster and a small vacuum.
- DORM ROOM STUFF: Some dorm mattresses still require extra-long sheets, so check your university’s website. Don’t forget an alarm clock, wastebasket, throw rug, hangers, flashlight (and batteries), iron and towels. Bring double-sided tape for any posters or wall hangings, as most schools will charge you for any holes you put in the walls.
- APPLIANCES: Talk to your roommate in advance about who’s bringing what in terms of shared items. Freshmen dorm rooms are tiny; there won’t be room for two fridges, microwaves or TVs. Also talk about fans, lamps and extension cords.
- OUTDOOR GEAR: Every state (even Florida!) has seasons and just because you heard it never snows in Phoenix doesn’t mean it won’t get cold. Pack an umbrella, boots, a light fleece, a raincoat, winter attire and multi-versatile flip-flops.
- SPORTS GEAR: Most colleges will have a place to store your bike (even if that means in your room) but bring a great bike lock as bikes are one of the most stolen items on campus. If you’re into sports, pack your ice or inline skates, skateboard, basketball, tennis racket, golf clubs, etc.
- HUNGER ZONE: Pulling an all-nighter is tough; pulling an all-nighter on an empty stomach is almost impossible! Head over to your local surplus stores like Costco and get easy-to-heat and store items. Making these purchases before you head to school can save you time and money. It’s definitely a dorm must-have—just don’t forget the forks, spoons, plastic dishware and containers!
- PETS AND PLANTS: Although pet policies vary greatly from school to school, you’ll also need to talk to your roommate. He or she might have an unexplainable fear of goldfish or an allergy to hamsters. Most plants are safe, but be sure to consider how much sunlight your dorm room will get.