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Determining What to Bring For College

May 11th, 2010

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It's moving day and you have a limited amount of space in mom's SUV. You know your dorm room is small and you can't bring everything from home, so now you have to determine which items you need the most. It's important that you consider what will enable you to live comfortably, and what you can afford to live without so that you won't suffer from clutter issues.

The one item that you absolutely cannot leave home without is your computer – whether it's a laptop or desktop. Your computer will not only enable you to complete your class work, but it will enable you to remain connected to home by using e-mail, Facebook or Skype. The best way to overcome those initial feelings of homesickness is to communicate consistently with your friends and family. Your computer will also allow you to entertain yourself when you're not partying or studying. Additional dorm room materials you'll need are sheets, toiletries, shower shoes for the community shower and clothes hangers. Of course, having sufficient clothing is essential, but first consider where you're moving. If your college is far away from home in a different climate, choose your wardrobe accordingly. For example, a student moving from Buffalo, New York to attend the University of Miami probably shouldn't load up on winter coats and accessories. Be sure to bring enough clothing to last through a semester. It wouldn't hurt to bring laundry detergent – you don't want to acquire any new nicknames from your roommates and friends. But if you do happen to forget an important item like detergent, you'll need to have the money to compensate. Before leaving, have all of your financial ducks in a row. Have money in your bank account and a debit card on hand. Make sure it's accompanied in your wallet by your driver's license (or ID) and social security card.

By now the SUV is probably filled to capacity, which makes the process of elimination easier. Don't feel bad about bringing tons of things like clothes and towels and leaving behind your TV and video game consol. It's college – you'll be spending your free time exploring campus bars, frequenting parties and striking out with opposite sex. Anything that comes on TV these days can be viewed on your computer, and most dormitories have lounges with at least one TV. Also, you won't have to bring furniture of any kind; dorms typically provide a bed, desk and dresser at the very least. The absence of these items will make moving easier. The quicker you're situated, the quicker you can assimilate into campus life and start enjoying your college experience.

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