21 Must-Haves You Must Have For Freshman Year At Virginia Tech

21 Must-Haves You Must Have For Freshman Year At Virginia Tech

The packing list for freshman year seems never ending but make sure you have these 21 things before your parents leave you in your new home!

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When I moved into my dorm for my first year at Tech, I thought I had everything but by the end of the first week, I realized that I was far from right. Thinking back to that first month, I wished that I had these 21 things so my life would have been a whole lot easier.

Tide Stick

It's going to be your best friend because you won't have the time (or energy) to wash clothes all the time, especially when it's just your fav shirt that has the stain on it and it costs $3 per load.

Sneakers

Being comfortable is going to win over fashion one day and you'll thank me when you can pull out those cute yet comfy Nike's that are in the closet. Plus, if you go to a big school like I do, you're going to be walking A LOT so your feet will thank you.

A Vacuum

Girls! We all shed like crazy & there is nothing worse than walking across your brand new rug and getting a ball full of hair caught in between your toes. Needless to say, it's just gross. So, quick and easy way to fix that is to run a good and strong vacuum over your carpet every week.

Shower Shoes

I cannot stress this enough. I know you might think that all the girls are like you and they're clean and neat but plot twist - THEY ARE NOT. Girls are disgusting and community showers are your worst nightmare so wear the shower shoes. They can help you from slipping in the shower & you won't have to step on the nasty hair rat that's in the shower drain that the girl before you forgot to clean out.

Step Stool

I didn't have this issue because I'm blessed with being six feet tall but my poor roommate had the hardest time. Some dorms have cubby holes above the built-in closets and it's a great idea, however, they are nearly impossible to get into if you are less than six feet. So save yourself some stress & pick yourself up one of those collapsable stools that can easily slide under your bed.

Extra LONG chargers

These will be your best friends because some dorms don't have outlets conveniently beside your bed so you have to plug everything half-way across the room. Even if that's not the case, it's always nice to have a charger that you can turn over with in bed and NOT having your phone come unplugged.

Lap Desks

You see them in the store and think, "Oh, I'm never going to use that." Ha. Ha. Ha. Buy one. Even if you don't do your homework in your bed, you'll want to watch Netflix and it helps to have the lap desk so your stomach doesn't become molted lava after five episodes from the heat off of your laptop.

Side note for the ladies (and guys): it's scientifically proven that the heat from laptops will decrease egg & sperm count. I know we aren't worrying about that now since we're in college but you know, one day, your parents are going to want some grandkids.

White Out

You're going to make so many mistakes, it's almost funny. There will come a time (finals week) that you aren't even sure if you spelled your name right so buy some white out just in case you have some misspellings or write the right answer in the wrong blank. Because professors hate nothing more than sloppy papers and homework assignments.

Extra Pair of Shower Shoes

There comes a time (second semester) when you go back to college from Christmas break and you realize how disgusting your old shower shoes are and how much grime and dirt they have been through. Save yourself some stress and a mental breakdown by having a back-up pair so you can throw those old, disgusting ones away.

Ear Plugs

They might be uncomfortable but when you're sleep deprived from your lovely hall mates bringing every tom, dick, and harry into their room and doing God knows what, you'll thank me because nothing is worse than being woken up by beds hitting the wall.

Yummy Snacks

Yes, the dinning hall has food. But what are you going to do when you have a craving for Pop-Tarts or cookies at 1 a.m.? Cry. That's what you are going to do unless you take my advice & make a list of all the yummy snacks your mom has bought for you in your life and go shopping after you have moved in.

Extra Headphones

At least two pairs of headphones. Why? Because one pair is going to break or you're going to lose a pair or leave a pair in the lecture hall. Just be safe rather than sorry because there is nothing worse than having to listen to loud classmates when you're hungover, I mean, tired.

Pictures from Home

You might think that you're ready to leave your parents and hometown and you might be right. But when the weather starts to get cold and Christmas is slowly approaching, you'll start being homesick. So, even if you don't have pictures on the wall, keep them somewhere to remind you where you came from and that you have a support system.

Fans!

I was blessed but also cursed to live in one of the best dorms at VT, Pritch. But Pritch has no AC so when you are living without AC in the middle of August, you might get Hades and your dorm confused. Quick and Easy way to fix that is to bring, at least, two fans. If you and your roommate each bring two fans, you will be as cool as can be.

Keurig

The great thing about a Keurig is that if can work for either coffee or tea. And if you get the small, one cup at a time, Keurig, it easily fits in a dorm. Just make sure to clean it out every once in a while because it can get moldy and yeah, just clean it.

A bucket

Random, right? Well, when you can get written up by your RA for puking in your community bathroom for alcohol poisoning, a bucket can come in handy. Also, if you're just sick in general because you caught the Hokie Plague, it's good to have a bucket by your bed.

Actual Utensils

It sounds silly but get real utensils. Don't use plastic all of the time because it's horrible for the environment and let's face it, we are the future and we need to take care of the Earth. Besides, it's a money saver when you can just wash the fork and not have to go to Walmart to buy them every month.

Clorox Wipes

They are your friends! There are so many germs when you live in a community like a dorm. From door knobs to sinks so just wipe everything down once a week so you don't get sick because I spent my freshman year sick and it was miserable.

First Aid Kit

There is no mom to fix your blister or cut on the back of your leg. There is also no nurse for you to run to when you have a headache in the middle of class — you have to be a mom & a nurse all in one. So, Target sells these really cute first aid kits that you can fill up with bandages and medicines.

Sewing Kit

A button is going to fall off of your fav sweater or you're going to tear your fav shirt because you were in a rush. So, even if you don't know how to sew, they created YouTube for a reason. Look it up and fix it.

Side note: Don't forget decent scissors

Command Strips

These are a God sent because they stick to almost anything - sometimes they even stick to things that tape does not. I used them to hang up my lights, tapestry and pictures throughout my dorm freshman year and nothing fell down. (except that one time that I accidentally pulled down my tapestry in my sleep lol) But seriously, command strips will save a lot of time and money in the long run.

Cover Image Credit:

Hannah King

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5 Things I Learned While Being A CNA

It's more than just $10 an hour. It is priceless.
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If I asked you to wipe someone's butt for $10 would you do it? If I asked you to give a shower to a blind, mentally confused person for $10 would you do it? If I asked you to simply wear a shirt stained with feces that was not your own for 12+ hours for $10 would you do it?

You probably wouldn't do it. I do it every day. During the course of one hour I change diapers, give showers to those who can no longer bathe themselves, feed mouths that sometimes can no longer speak and show love to some that do not even know I am there all for ten dollars.

I am a certified nursing assistant.

My experiences while working as a CNA have made me realize a few things that I believe every person should consider, especially those that are in the medical field.

1. The World Needs More People To Care

Working as a nursing assistant is not my only source of income. For the past year I have also worked as a waitress. There are nights that I make triple the amount while working as a waitress for 6 hours than I make while taking care of several lives during a 12 hour shift. Don't get me wrong, being a waitress is not a piece of cake. I do, however, find it upsetting that people care more about the quality of their food than the quality of care that human beings are receiving. I think the problem with the world is that we need to care more or more people need to start caring.

2. I Would Do This Job For Free

One of my teachers in high school said "I love my job so much, if I didn't have to pay bills, I would do it for free." I had no clue what this guy was talking about. He would work for free? He would teach drama filled, immature high school students for free? He's crazy.

I thought he was crazy until I became a CNA. Now I can honestly say that this is a job I would do for free. I would do it for free? I'd wipe butts for free? I must be crazy.

There is a very common misconception that I am just a butt-wiper, but I am more than that. I save lives!

Every night I walk into work with a smile on my face at 5:00 PM, and I leave with a grin plastered on my face from ear to ear every morning at 5:30 AM. These people are not just patients, they are my family. I am the last face they see at night and the first one they talk to in the morning.

3. Eat Dessert First

Eat your dessert first. My biggest pet peeve is when I hear another CNA yell at another human being as if they are being scolded. One day I witnessed a co-worker take away a resident's ice cream, because they insisted the resident needed to "get their protein."

Although that may be true, we are here to take care of the patients because they can't do it themselves. Residents do not pay thousands of dollars each month to be treated as if they are pests. Our ninety-year-old patients do not need to be treated as children. Our job is not to boss our patients around.

This might be their last damn meal and you stole their ice cream and forced them to eat a tasteless cafeteria puree.

Since that day I have chosen to eat desserts first when I go out to eat. The next second of my life is not promised. Yes, I would rather consume an entire dessert by myself and be too full to finish my main course, than to eat my pasta and say something along the lines of "No, I'll pass on cheesecake. I'll take the check."

A bowl of ice cream is not going to decrease the length of anyone's life any more than a ham sandwich is going to increase the length of anyone's life. Therefore, I give my patients their dessert first.

4. Life Goes On

This phrase is simply a phrase until life experience gives it a real meaning. If you and your boyfriend break up or you get a bad grade on a test life will still continue. Life goes on.

As a health care professional you make memories and bonds with patients and residents. This summer a resident that I was close to was slowly slipping away. I knew, the nurses knew and the family knew. Just because you know doesn't mean that you're ready. I tried my best to fit in a quick lunch break and even though I rushed to get back, I was too late. The nurse asked me to fulfill my duty to carry on with post-mortem care. My eyes were filled with tears as I gathered my supplies to perform the routine bed bath. I brushed their hair one last time, closed their eye lids and talked to them while cleansing their still lifeless body. Through the entire process I talked and explained what I was doing as I would if my patient were still living.

That night changed my life.

How could they be gone just like that? I tried to collect my thoughts for a moment. I broke down for a second before *ding* my next call. I didn't have a moment to break down, because life goes on.

So, I walked into my next residents room and laughed and joked with them as I normally would. I put on a smile and I probably gave more hugs that night than I normally do.

That night I learned something. Life goes on, no matter how bad you want it to just slow down. Never take anything for granted.

5. My Patients Give My Life Meaning

My residents gave my life a new meaning. I will never forget the day I worked twelve hours and the person that was supposed to come in for me never showed up. I needed coffee, rest, breakfast or preferably all of the above. I recall feeling exasperated and now I regret slightly pondering to myself "Should I really be spending my summer like this?" Something happened that changed my view on life completely. I walked into a resident's room and said "Don't worry it's not Thursday yet", since I had told her on that Tuesday morning that she wouldn't see me until I worked again on Thursday. She laughed and exclaimed "I didn't think so, but I didn't want to say anything," she chuckled and then she smiled at me again before she said, "Well... I am glad you're still here." The look on her face did nothing less than prove her words to be true. That's when I realized that I was right where I needed to be.

Yes, I was exhausted. Yes, I needed caffeine or a sufficient amount of sleep. My job is not just a job. My work is not for a paycheck. My residents mean more to me than any amount of money.

I don't mind doing what I do for $10; because you can't put a price on love. The memories that I have with my patients are priceless.


Cover Image Credit: Mackenzie Rogers

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Midterms As Told By The Disney Princesses

"Sometimes the right path, is not the easiest one." - Pocahontas

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We have finally reached the point in the semester where all of our motivation has run out. We have officially started skipping class on the reg, and started wearing sweats every single day. Yes, I'm talking about mid semester, and with mid semester that means midterms are here. Let me walk you guys through what midterms are like, with a little help from the Disney princesses, because let's face it we all wish we were a princess right now.

1. The first time your professor mentions the midterm exam, since syllabus day.

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Huh, I'm sorry but did you say exam?

2. When your professor hands you the study guide, (if you get one).

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3. Looking through the study guide and realizing how much you actually have to know.

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4. Attempt #1 of many to study.

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aka a huge fail

5. Actually studying.

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aka a cram session the night before

6. When you start to lose all focus.

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7. Snack break.

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8. When you start doing random things.

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9. Trying to get your focus back to studying.

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10. Actually studying part 2.

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11. The point in studying when you just can't anymore.

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12. Breaking down because you realize you know nothing and that you're going to fail.

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13. Deciding to just to go bed because you're over it.

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14. Waking up hating life the next morning.

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15. Taking and completely bs-ing your entire exam.

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16. Walking out of your exam.

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