What to Pack for College: 5 Things Nearly All Freshmen Forget

The month leading up to a student’s freshman year of college is a whirlwind. There are so many things to do, from finding a roommate and ordering your first set of textbooks, to packing up your entire wardrobe. It’s a lot of preparation, so the key is to stay organized. But what to pack?

Dormify.com offers a helpful packing list for your dorm room. Don’t forget to coordinate with your roommate on some of the bigger, sharable items (such as a coffee maker or mini fridge) to save money and space.

However, there are some items that even the most prepared college freshman tends to forget about. Here are the top five items you should include in your duffel this fall:

1. Interview Outfit

Business Insider Traditional Business Attire

Just because it’s freshman year doesn’t mean you won’t have opportunities to meet potential employers. It is never too early to start networking and planning for your future. Most colleges have job fairs and mock interview sessions to help make contacts and get a good understanding about how to prepare for the working world. If you bring an interview-ready outfit to school your first fall semester, you can get ahead of the pack and demonstrate your commitment and dedication as a young professional. Click the image above for more examples on levels of business attire.


2. Alarm Clock

ihome alarm clock

Between studying at crowded cafes and late nights in friends’ dorm rooms, active and social students have a knack for misplacing their phone and phone charger. (It happens to the best of us.) You could get stuck in a predicament if your phone is the only alarm clock you have in your dorm room. Prevent the problem by packing a standard alarm clock. It’s always smart to have a backup plan! Consider purchasing a three-in-one device, like the iHome above, that contains an alarm clock, music speakers, and phone charger. You’ll have less items to pack and find space for it in a cramped dorm room. Click on the image for ten docking stations with great reviews.


 3. External Hard Drive

portable external hard drive in a computer

Everyone has heard horror stories of students whose ten-page research paper was lost after an unfortunate computer crash. To avoid this situation, back up all your documents onto an external hard drive. You will always have a copy no matter what unpredictable things happen to your laptop.


 4. Medicine Kit

dorm first aid kit

Incoming college students can expect to spend days outdoors and late nights working. It’s a great idea to pack a mini medicine kit for any unpredictable ailments. Be sure to include bandages, pain killers, and any allergy medication needed. In fact, you might want to throw in a bottle of antacids or heartburn relief pills in the kit. Dining hall food can be questionable at times!


 5. Portable Phone Charger

blue portable phone charger

Of course, most freshmen will remember to bring their phone charger, but a hardworking student is always on the go. Between a full schedule of classes, study time at the library, participating in and leading clubs, and making new friends, there’s hardly any downtime. Nothing is worse than your phone dying when you need to coordinate with your econ study group or let your friend know you’ll be running a bit late. Communication is key to making it through the day. Be prepared and carry a portable phone charger so you can stay charged and accessible. These chargers come in various styles and colors and are universal for phones with USB cables, so click the image above and find the one you like best.


Even the most prepared student doesn’t anticipate everything they may need or want in the dorms their freshman year of college. Do you think there is something missing from this list? Please share your dorm essentials in the comments below.

Featured Image – Texas A&M University / CC by 2.0


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