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What to bring to college?
K-State orientation leaders have tips for new students

By Beth Bohn

 

Most colleges and universities provide new students with lists of items they'll find helpful to have during the school year, such as what to bring to the residence halls to supplies needed for certain classes.

Suite room 1But the "experts" -- students who already have at least one year of college under their belts -- say there are other items that may not be on the lists that can make college life a lot easier. Here are some things student orientation leaders at Kansas State University say they've found useful to have at college:

* Surge protectors for electronics.

* Extension cords.

* First-aid kit, including bandages and over-the-counter pain relievers like aspirin or ibuprofen.

* Pictures of your family.

Suite room 2* An "emergency-only" candy jar for when you need a boost in spirits or you need to boost someone else's spirits.

* Playing cards or games. They can be great icebreakers.

* A robe.

* Shower shoes.

* A desk lamp and desk supplies, such as a three-hole punch, stapler, tape, paperclips, highlighters, dividers, tacks, rubber bands and note cards.

* Twisty ties. They're great for keeping bagged items secure.

* Lots of quarters for doing laundry; laundry supplies, including detergent and dryer sheets; hangers; and a laundry basket. Tip: A collapsible basket can be a space saver if dealing with limited storage.

empty dorm room* An umbrella.

* Message board for your door.

* Cell phone or calling card. If you don't have one, you'll need the other -- or both, depending on your cell phone plan.

* A microwave -- make sure to check what wattages are allowed in your living accommodations first -- and microwave-safe bowls and plates. You also may want to eat something other than pizza, so having eating utensils is a must.

* A computer or laptop. Bringing your own computer can be a great time-saver, orientation leaders said, but they also said that if you don't have your own, check out where campus computer labs or other student-accessible computers are.

Dorm room full* A planner to help keep track of assignments, meetings and other important information.

* A campus map for new students. The orientation leaders also recommend taking some time a day or two before classes begin to find the buildings, classrooms and lecture halls where your classes will be so you won't get lost the first day.

* An open mind and a positive attitude. You'll need both to get through college, orientation leaders said.

 

Photos: (Top two) An empty suite. (Bottom two) An empty dorm room and a stocked model dorm room.

Summer 2005