Things No One Told You to Bring to College, But You Should

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As a freshman, moving into your dorm can be an exciting and nerve-wracking time. You have probably gone over lists and lists of what to bring with your parents and friends. You’ve also probably been on several Target or Bed, Bath & Beyond runs every other day.

As the first semester approaches, and you begin your new adventure, it’s best to be prepared and to know that you are covered when it comes to dorm room essentials. Below is a list of eight things no one told you to bring to college, well before now:

Bookends -- As you will soon learn, college classes require a lot of reading materials. By this I mean tons of textbooks, that definitely won't be anything short of heavy. The most common place that students put their books is on the top of their desks. While this sounds like a great idea, myself and others included have had this same setup, which then ended in disaster as the books fell and knocked everything off of the desk. Lesson learned, get something heavy enough to block your books from moving and sliding.

Extension cords and power strips-- Although most people have this on their list, you can never over pack this essential item. And I mean, you can NEVER over pack. It's amazing how many things you need plugged into your dorm room, compared to the number of outlets. In addition, your bed will be raised off the floor, so if you like to keep your phone charging beside you like I do, an extension cord comes in handy. Lesson learned, bring as many extension cords and power strips that you can, because you can never have too many.

Old costumes -- This may seem like something weird to bring to college with you, but as you will soon discover either at social events or club meetings, they really like to have themed dress up days. Whether it be a Hawaiian theme or sports related, it's never a bad idea to come prepared. Even if you think it's useless, you will at least automatically have something to wear when Halloween rolls around.
A typical image of what your vehicle will look like on move in day.

Silverware — While food is on the freshman’s mind, silverware may not be. This is one of the most important essentials I can stress. It may not seem like you need it now, but there will come a time where you need a fork, spoon, or knife. In addition to that, it would be good to bring plastic plates, as well as napkins. If you’re really into cooking, Iowa State does provide small kitchenettes in some dorm halls, and in that case a pair of oven mitts would really help you out, if you’re wanting to bake cookies or frozen pizzas.

Rain Gear-- Sadly, it does rain in college. But have no fear, with rain gear it at least won't rain on your parade. Packing rain boots and a rain jacket or umbrella will help you get to classes on time without being soaking wet. It's good to remember that although buses can save you from the rain, a lot of students are trying to ride so there will be a wait time in which you will be standing outside.

Quarters -- While most people reference quarters in college with laundry, this is not the case. At Iowa State all laundry facilities only take the swipe of your ISU id card. However, quarters are still necessary to bring if you want to park close to specific buildings campus. Most parking is around $2 for 2 hours and uses meters. There is a free commuter lot though if you want to avoid this.

Safety Pins -- These are an essential for college. Whether it be used for pinning together an outfit that you borrowed from a friend or for a school project, you never know what you'll need to pin together! It's better to be safe than sorry.

A Good Attitude -- Yes this is not actually an item, but it is the most important on this list. While packing can stress you out, when the big day comes it's important to have a good attitude. You may be sad because your family is leaving or nervous because you don't know your new roommate. Emotions will be running wild. However, there will never be a more fun and unique time in your life, so you might as well go into it with the best mood possible.

You got this. Get ready for your adventure!

Posted by: Amanda Holloway