11 Vital Things You Didn't Know You Needed For College

11 Vital Things You Didn't Know You Needed For College

We all over-prepare in some ways, and under-prepare in all other ways.

There are so many articles out there that list things you'll need for college that you don't think of. Most of them have things like irons or a mirror, but I'm going to get even more specific than that. Here are things you need for college that you wouldn't think of until you don't have them.

1. Something that Boils Water

Whether it be a Keurig, a hot pot, or something else, you WILL want this. You're not gonna want to spend all of your money at your school's coffee shop (well, you might, but it's expensive), so it's recommended that you get something to boil water. This is also great for rice and Ramen Noodles, both college staples. Seriously great for late night cravings that you don't want to leave your room to satisfy.

2. A Backrest Pillow

So this probably seems a little frivolous, since you can rest up against your pillows. However, your pillows are definitely gonna slide down and won't provide enough support, leaving for a very sore neck and back. These are more firm, providing support and comfort. It's also great for sitting on your bed and doing homework! Preferably get one that's soft/fluffy; you won't regret it.

3. A Mattress Pad

For my first two years of college, I did not have this. It didn't bother me too much, but once I did get a mattress pad, there was no way I was going back. It's like sleeping with a cloud between you and the bulky fire-guard mattresses provided by the school.

4. String Lights

So this one may seem super cliche, but there's actually a good reason that these are a trend among college students. 90% of college dorm rooms are lit by fluorescent lighting, which can quickly getting annoying and irritating to your eyes. It doesn't feel like natural lighting. In our modern age, we have LED and Tungsten lights (though LED is recommended, so as to avoid any sparks when the lights go out). These make for MUCH more natural lighting, which also makes it easier to see things as they are, and not with an odd hue of yellow-white from the light. A small lamp is also encouraged.

5. A Shelf/Nightstand

Sometimes you can place your dresser next to your bed, but sometimes there just isn't enough room. A nightstand is great to put your phone on while charging, a water bottle, glasses, etc. A shelf is great to put those typical college snacks and small items, like Ramen, popcorn, chips, etc. Many times, you can buy a small shelf that will fit next to your bed, if you measure it out, and use the top of it as a nightstand. More storage, and a place to put your phone where you can hear the alarm in the morning!

6. Everything from the "Command" Brand that Exists

This may be something you have already thought of, but you'll need more than you think. Unfortunately, it can be kind of expensive, but it is so worth it. Duct tape leaves marks on the wall, scotch tape doesn't want to get off of the wall, and any nails or screws that are found are considered "damage". Command really does come off as clean as the commercials show, and they can hold up almost anything (the packaging will tell you which ones can hold up to what weight).

7. Your own Printer and Stapler

Many school's libraries and academic buildings have printers staplers that you can use. When you're writing a paper at 11:00pm though, you're probably not going to want to walk over to one of the above buildings to print and staple your paper. Having a printer and stapler on hand with you is so much easier than going somewhere else to use those things. Plus, it saves you walking time when you're up for a late night and just want to get to bed as soon as possible.

8. Packing Tape

You will be sending packages home, sending rental books back to their respective companies, and using the mail system for so much more. Packing tape is a must, as masking tape, and sometimes even duct tape, are not gonna cut it with your local post office most of the time. Packing tape is also much sturdier, keeping you from risking any damage fines when returning books.

9. Curtains

The blinds that a dorm room comes with are not very great. They do the job, but they're also not very flattering to your nicely decorated room, and they're usually a pain to work with. Black out curtains are great if there's a street lamp outside of your window, or if you just like things to be very dark at night like I do. If you have a sink in your dorm room, they're great for putting in front of that, as a messy sink can also be an eyesore. You probably won't want everyone seeing all of your personal belongings anyways.

10. A Sports Water Bottle

This one may sound weird, but they truly are easier. They have a straw on them for easy and quiet sipping in class. You can use them when working out, or you can put them in your backpack's side pocket without it spilling. They're easy to fill and typically are very nice water bottles. Along with all of this, you can avoid embarrassing spills all over the front of yourself. You will want to stay hydrated in college, especially with all of the walking to and fro.

11. Your Dog/Pet

You will seriously miss them more than you can ever imagine at college. Creds to my dog for taking this bomb ass pic.

Cover Image Credit: Celebrity Daschund

Popular Right Now

To The Boy Who Will Love Me Next

If you can't understand these few things, leave before things get too involved

To the boy that will love me next, I need you to know and understand things about me and my past. The things I have been though not only have shaped the person I’ve become, but also sometimes controls my life. In the past I’ve been used, abused, and taken for granted, and I want something real this time. The guys before you were just boys; they didn’t know how to treat me until it was too late. They didn’t understand how to love me, until I broke my own heart. Before you truly decide to love me I want you to understand these things.

When I tell you something, please listen.

I’m my own person, I want to be loved a certain way. If I ask you to come over and watch movies with me please do it, if I ask for you to leave me alone for a few hours because it’s a girl’s night please do it. I don’t just say things to hear my own voice, I say things to you because it’s important to my life and the way I want to be loved. I’m not a needy person when it comes to being loved and cared for, but I do ask for you to do the small things that I am say.

Forgive my past.

My past is not a pretty brick road, it is a highway that has a bunch of potholes and cracks in it. I have a lot of baggage, and most of it you won’t understand. But don’t let my past decided whether you want to love me or not. My past has helped form who I am today, but it does not define who I am. My past experiences might try and make an appearance every once in a while, but I will not go back to that person I once was, I will not return to all that hurt I once went though. When I say those things, I’m telling the complete and honest truth. I relive my past every day, somethings haunt me and somethings are good reminds. But for you to love me, I need you to accept my past, present and future.

I’m just another bro to the other guys.

I have always hung out with boys, I don’t fit in with the girl groups. I have 10 close girlfriends, but the majority of my friends are guy, but don’t let this scare you. If I wanted to be with one of my guy friends I would already be with him, and if you haven’t noticed I don’t want them because I’m with you. I will not lose my friendships with all my guy friends to be able to stay with you. I will not cut off ties because you don’t like my guy friends. I have lost too many buddies because of my ex-boyfriends and I promised myself I wouldn’t do that again. If you don’t like how many guy friends I have you can leave now. Don’t bother trying to date me if you can accept the fact I’m just another bro.

I might be a badass, but I actually have a big heart.

To a lot of people I come off to be a very crazy and wild girl. I will agree I can be crazy and wild, but I’m more than that. I’m independent, caring, responsible, understanding, forgiving, and so such more type of woman. Many people think that I’m a badass because I don’t take any negatively from anyone. Just like we learned when we were younger, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all.” Most people can’t do that in today’s world, so I stick up for myself and my friends. I don’t care what anyone thinks about me, or their option on how I live my life. The only thing I care about is being able to make myself happy. Even though I’m an independent woman, understand that I do have a big heart. Honesty when I truly care for someone I will do just about anything they ask, but don’t take advantage of this. Once you take advantage of this part of me, all respect will be lost for you.

I’m hard to love.

Sometimes I want to be cuddle and get attention, and sometimes I don’t want you to talk to me for a couple hours. Sometimes I want you to take me out for a nice meal, but sometimes I want a home cooked meal. Every day is different for me, sometimes I change my mind every hour. My mood swings are terrible on certain days, and on those days you should probably just ignore me. I’m not easy to love, so you’ll either be willing to find a way to love me, or you’ll walk out like so many others have.

I’m scared.

I’m scared to love someone again. I’ve been hurt, heartbroken, and beat to the ground in my past relationships. I want to believe you are different, I want to hope things will truly work out, but every relationship has always ended up the same way. I’m scared to trust someone, put my whole heart into them, just to be left and heartbroken again. I sick and tired of putting my whole body and soul into someone for them to just leave when it is convenient for them. If you want to love me, understand it won’t be easy for me to love you back.

When “I’m done.”

When I say “I’m done” I honestly don’t mean that I’m done. When I say that it means I need and want you to fight for me, show me why you want to be with me. I need you to prove that I’m worth it and there’s no one else but me. If I was truly done, I would just walk away, and not come back. So if I ever tell you, “I’m done,” tell me all the reasons why I’m truly not done.

For the boy who will love me next, the work is cut out for you, you just have to be willing to do it. I’m not like other girls, I am my own person, and I will need to be treated as such. For the boy that will love me next, don’t bother with me unless you really want to be with me. I don’t have time to waste on you if you aren’t going to try and make something out of us. To the boy who will love me next, the last thing I would like to say is good luck, I have faith in you.

Cover Image Credit: Danielle Balint

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

The One Thing Everyone Should Do Before They Graduate

Why I wish everyone could have shared in my end of school adventure.


The end of freshman year was filled with the abundant stress of final exams, teary-eyed goodbyes, and last looks at my dorm room on South Campus. The academic year was overwhelmingly busy, and I tried my best to soak in every single moment as a first-year college student. But as I'm sure many of you can understand, it's not always possible to make time for the adventures we so desperately desire. I found myself saying "I want to do that!" all year long, and here it was the last week of the year and my bucket list had barely been touched. All those Philadelphia excursions, dreamy coffee shop dates, and campus explorations that I looked forward to never ended up panning out…

… until last Thursday night.

With about half the freshman class moved out of South Campus, everything felt a little strange. There was barely a dinner rush at all in Donahue Dining Hall, and my room looked so empty it almost made me sad. Naturally, I called up a couple of friends. Within minutes, we met in the lounge, and we were off for our adventure.

Every single day on the way to labs in Mendel Hall, I walked past the beloved Falvey Fountain. It had become such a consistent part of my routine that walking past it felt like it was a necessary daily occurrence. But this time, we didn't walk past. In fact, we stopped dead in our tracks and admired its color changing beauty for a brief moment.

And then we dove in!

Yes, we jumped right into the fountain. First the daring adventurer of the group, then his sidekick, then the skeptic, and finally myself. This was definitely not allowed, but no one was around, and more importantly, no one cared. Being knee deep was freezing, but the adrenaline rush was too much to suppress. So we submerged further, dunking each other and splashing the icy water literally everywhere. My wet hair made way for the most epic hair flip of all time, and we all laughed joyously.

All the stress of looming final grades and the completion of projects, the bittersweet goodbyes to our newfound families, and the hassles of packing up for the year were washed away in that fountain, drowned in the euphoria of the moment. We were officially baptized in summer as it dubbed us the kings and queens of adventure.

Afterward, we wrung out our soaking clothes and snapped a quick pic of our drenched selves. Trying to escape the scene hastily, I dropped my bag of M&M;'s. They spilled everywhere, leaving streams of melty chocolate and food coloring running through the aftermath of our fountain dive. The scene looked like a bit of Willy Wonka's chocolate factory had exploded from the fountain and into the night.

I am far from kidding when I say that adventure is a must for everyone, at any stage of life. Whether it's fountain diving at Nova, or sky diving in New Mexico, something about us as human beings needs the unusual, exciting, and even hazardous experiences. This one was particularly cleansing and absolutely unforgettable.

So I implore you: go forth this summer and be adventurous! Explore hidden places, try new eats, shuffle a stranger's playlist, introduce yourself to someone on a whim, or just get in the car and drive with no destination in mind. This summer is for the bold; this summer's for you.

Happy adventuring!


Related Content

Facebook Comments