Leaving for college is, without a doubt, one of the most exciting moments of your life. You’re embarking on a brand new journey that will impact your future. Before you load up those boxes and head for campus, make sure you’re prepared.

How Do I Start Planning for College?

One of the biggest parts of moving to college is … well, moving! Many students have never lived away from home before heading to their university, so it can be a big adjustment. It’s important not to forget the right supplies and accessories if you want to be comfortable and successful.

While every dorm is different, this is a general list of things you’ll need to pack before setting out for college:

  • This should include a mattress cover that protects from bedbugs, a comforter set, mattress pad, pillows, pillowcases, sheet set, and throw pillows/blankets.
  • Additional seating, but nothing too bulky. A beanbag chair is a great choice.
  • Alarm clock (good backup if you’re prone to snoozing your phone’s alarm).
  • Appliances, such a coffee makers, toaster, microwave, mini-fridge (check your college’s rules first!). You may want to consider a fan for summers and a heater for winters depending on how cold and hot you get.
  • Bulletin or dry-erase board
  • Calendar
  • Cleaning supplies. Bring disinfecting wipes, dish detergent, sponges, a broom/stick vacuum, dustpan, mop, duster, paper towels, etc.
  • Closet organizer
  • Non-permanent hooks and adhesive strips
  • Clothes hangers and a shoe rack
  • Curtain rods and curtains
  • Full-length mirror
  • Gaming consoles
  • Nightstand
  • Television
  • Trash cans
  • Under-bed storage containers
  • Laundry supplies, including hamper, detergent, bleach, softener, etc.
  • Bath supplies, including shampoo, body wash, towels, shower shoes, caddy, razor, etc.
  • Hygiene supplies, such as toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant, perfume/cologne.
  • Medications, including prescriptions and other over-the-counter items.
  • Printer and ink
  • Snacks and drinks
  • Reusable food containers
  • Eating utensils
  • Laptop/tablet/phone and chargers or accessories
  • Decorative items, such as like area rugs, posters, family photos, etc.
  • Don’t forget to plan for all sorts of occasions – bring everything from swimming clothes to formal wear.
  • Supplies for classes, such as pencils, binders, loose-leaf paper, printer paper, and USB drives.

Other Preparations

Once you’re all packed, make sure you take care of any other preparations before you leave. Double-check any scholarship or grant information. Memorize a map of campus – especially if you need to check in at the registrar or housing office. Buy your textbooks as early as possible so you can avoid long lines and get a jumpstart on the important material.

Most important, be ready to study hard, have fun, and make memories of a lifetime. College is a great step toward your future, but it’s also a time to relish and grow.

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