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Dorm Room Life – What You Should Leave At Home

Last year I had the opportunity to help move in over 600 incoming students to my alma mater (Wittenberg University). As I was carrying a variety of items up and down stairs, through door ways and hallways, and ultimately to their final destination — the dorm room –,  I was in awe at how much “stuff” a college student brings to campus these days. I really didn’t think it was possible to cram all the luxuries of home into a 12 foot by 12 foot residence hall room but I was proven wrong.

Here are some of the more “stand out” items that I carried through the halls:

  • Condo-Sized Refrigerator (totally serious on this one – you could put enough food in this thing to last the whole semester and still have room for a keg. wait… what? hmmm…)
  • 50 Inch Flat Screen TV (I don’t even have a tv that big in my own house)
  • Brick Collection (I think it was an art student…)
  • Berber Carpet (lots and lots of rolls of this stuff last year)

The unfortunate reality of move-in day is that I see a number of parents heading home at the end of the day with all the stuff that the students were unable to successfully shove into their rooms. This excess stuff is usually a result of the new roomies not coordinating about who is bringing what. However, I really think the cause is just having too much stuff to begin with and not being able to prioritize about what should come and what should probably stay at home.

In an effort to help you discern what may or may not be appropriate to bring with you to college, the following lists should serve as a guide for you as you begin your trek off to campus.

ELECTRICAL ITEMS THAT MOST COLLEGES ARE “OK” WITH

portable electric hair dryers
hot combs
electric razors
electric rollers
electric toothbrush/water picks
sewing machines
lighted makeup mirrors
electric blankets
heating pads
microfridges
electric coffee pots
closed-coil hot pot
closed-coil popcorn poppers
computers
irons
lamps (no halogen)
television sets

ELECTRICAL ITEMS THAT COLLEGES WOULD PREFER YOU LEAVE AT HOME

crock pots
electric skillets
lava lamps
sun lamps
hot plates
air conditioners
broiler/toaster ovens
toasters
wireless routers
electrical fryers/frying pans
electric sauce pans
microwave ovens
gas/any type of grill
any type of blender
high wattage spot/flood light
convection ovens
power tools
potpourri burners
electric heaters
halogen lamps
rice cookers

HERE ARE SOME MISC. ITEMS THAT COLLEGES ENCOURAGE YOU TO BRING

alarm clock
area rug/carpet
bed linens/pillows
clothes hangers
first aid kit/thermometer
laundry supplies
wastebasket
personal hygiene items
plants
power strip w/surge protector
school supplies
sewing kit
stationary and stamps
towels
umbrella
small vacuum cleaner

HERE ARE SOME MISC. ITEMS THAT COLLEGES PREFER YOU TO LEAVE AT HOME

candles
weapons
fireworks
pets (except for fish)
and of course anything else that would be deemed as illegal

Hope you found this information helpful. If you know of anyone else that has a college bound student and they are looking at renting a large U-Haul to move everything, please forward this list onto them in hopes that it helps them to weed out some of the items that may be better off left at home.

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