Monday, July 18, 2011

Bringing Stuff and What to Bring

As the school year gets closer, many of you are probably thinking about what you need to bring. The task of moving your entire life from one place may be daunting, but hopefully this post will be a helpful guide in moving all of your effects from point A to point B!

Don't bring your chicken. They aren't allowed in the res halls, unfortunately :(

Moving from California was a challenge for me. The space I had to move my life was limited to a suitcase, duffel bag and backpack. I also ended up having to stuff a few dresses in my guitar case for padding, but that actually worked out well, because it protected the instrument. If you're coming from out-of-state (or country), I would suggest bringing only the bare essentials (the kind of stuff you would pack for a vacation at a hotel, primarily clothes). Then when you arrive you can simply purchase all the things for your dorm room at Walmart, Kohl's, or one of the other many stores at the North End. The other advantage to buying things once you're already here i that you know how much you can fit into your space.

You will need a lot of stuff, sometimes more than you might realize. The little things that you need around the house won't be available in your room. Things like duct tape, pliers, can openers, paper plates, tissues, staplers, chopsticks, dish soap, sponges, and cleaners won't just be lying around for you to access, like they are at home. It's these little things that you can get as the need arises, but here are a few things I would recommend having around, just in case:
-tool kit, just a basic one will do. You never know when you're going to need a screw driver to unstick a glow star from the ceiling.
-all purpose cleaner
-dish soap
-paper towels (you can also just take these from the bathroom if need be)
-cloth towels of all sizes
-extra toiletries
-storage things! One or two totes will work well to store things you don't use often, and are a lot more durable than boxes. These can be purchased at the Everything Rubbermaid store downtown. Seriously four floors of Rubbermaid. It. Is. Awesome.
-anything for your hobbies (knitting, playing music, throwing a Frisbee around)
-DUCT TAPE, trust me on this one.
-Command strips and hooks to hang sweatshirts, towels, posters, and just about anything else you can think of*.

These are all things you may want to purchase once you arrive, because they're hard to pack or take on a plane. Be sure to check back on the comment section because I'm sure there are things that other people will add.

You will need different clothing for different parts of the year, since the weather changes here. A good idea is to only bring season-appropriate clothing with you to school, and if you end up going home for breaks, you can switch out the clothes you need as the year progresses. Since I only go home for winter break, I have a "winter box" of clothes that I break out once it starts snowing and put away my summer clothes until spring comes again.

You'll probably need one good winter coat that you can wear in below-freezing temperatures, as well as a scarf and some gloves.

Detailed Visual Aid

Clothing is definitely the one thing you should bring from home and not plan on buying here, unless you can't buy heavy coats where you live. For example, clothes are made much thicker here in Ohio than they are in California. Therefore, I waited to buy winter clothing until I arrived in Wooster and could buy something more substantial than a hoodie. You can also hit up Goodwill if you don't feel like spending a ton of money on a winter coat, as they sometimes have very good ones for cheap.

You can't bring a toaster, so don't try. You'll just end up getting it taken away and that won't be any fun.
No toasters allowed, no matter how little and/or brave they are.

You can and should, however have a microwave and fridge. You can definitely live without one, since there's usually one available in your dorm. However in the past I've found it is more convenient to simply have these things in the room so I don't have to wait on someone else to finish before preparing my Easy Mac. Hot pots are great for making things like oatmeal and hot tea, cocoa, or instant coffee as well. BE SURE TO COORDINATE WITH YOUR ROOMMATE to figure out who's bringing what. Because seriously, you don't need two refrigerators.

That about covers it for now. If I think of anything else I'll edit the post as I see fit :)

*A word about Command Strips: Follow the directions carefully!!! If you don't pull STRAIGHT down, it will end poorly for both your hand and the paint on the wall.


  1. Nice post. As an international student I would like to reiterate that if you come from far away, you should only bring the very basics. As for beddings, it's all pretty cheap at Kohl's and walmart too so dont waste your luggage space on it. All I brought myself was clothes, books and some souvenirs.

  2. Thanks for that :) Also, I forgot to put a first-aid kit. Not essential, since you can get that stuff at the wellness center (or use tissues and tape), but handy to have around

  3. Can you bring things like a blender or coffee maker?