Most high school seniors are now graduates. Congratulations! Before you run out and spend all your graduation money and summer income on necessities for your new college live, resist the urge!
You will want to pack the basics for your new dorm room, but you may want to wait until you settle into your new environment before you complete your shopping. Start by making a list of necessities; my list would start with my iPhone, computer, and big fuzzy blanket. Start listing your must have items. Don’t forget items you might take for granted at home.
- Personal electronics (phone, computer, alarm clock, etc.)
- Bedding (sheets, mattress cover, blankets)
- Bath Items (towels, toiletries, hair dryer, etc.)
Next you will wan to consider comfort. It doesn’t take too much to personalize a dorm room and make it more inviting and livable. Choose a few accessories – like posters, pillows, and lamps – to make your surroundings more welcoming. Before you purchase any big items, you will want to coordinate with your new roommates and check with the policies at your university. Some campuses don’t allow students to have refrigerators, microwaves, or certain small appliances. Even if you can bring these items, you may not want, or have space for, two or three of everything. Bring the basics. After a few weeks in your new place, you may want to go shopping. By packing only necessities, you will avoid clutter and save money.
Clothing is one area in which too many students do all their shopping before they arrive on campus and regret that decision. Yes, you will need clothes, but you may want to bring the basics to campus and go shopping later. Hopefully you got a chance to visit your new campus when school was in session last year, so you have some idea about campus fashion. Some schools are jeans and t-shirt places while others are more dressy. Keep in mind that mom or dad can always ship a box of clothes from home if you find you need additional coats, formals, or suits than you initially packed. If you start the year with a basic wardrobe you can plan to shop after a few weeks on campus.
Starting the school year off with your essentials and planning to supplement as you go will reduce dorm room clutter, save you money, and give you the opportunity to transition from high school to college life.