Dorm Checklist: What to Bring to College Your First Year

Last Updated on May 26, 2023

New residents use their dorm checklist for Freshman move-in day at North Carolina A&T State University.
Photo via North Carolina A&T State University.

Attending college and planning your academic future during the freshman year is certainly exciting but it’s quite stressful too, as you have to make a lot of adjustments. Plus, the idea of packing your life and moving into the college dorm is quite daunting, especially if it’s your first time away from home. It’s often confusing for students to figure out what to bring to college when they are going to live on campus. Well, to make your life a tad less stressful and your dorm transition easier, we’ve created a dorm checklist that covers basics needed for students to survive on campus during the first year of college.

Here is Our Dorm Checklist:

Dorm Essentials

Personal items from home will aid in the transition, but you’ll need more than your teddy bear or gaming console to get through the year. Our list of essential dorm checklist will help you figuring out your requirements. But, before packing things, check with your school's website to see what’re and what aren’t allowed in the dormitory. One school might not allow microwaves while another might be strict about the size of your TV or refrigerators.

Dorm Bedding

You should know what type of bed your dorm allows before making the purchase. Is it a regular one or extra-long? Many college dorms have twin extra-long beds, requiring you to buy special sheet sets. Whatever bedding items you bring, make sure that they are durable and easy to wash, as it will reduce your hassle more than you can’t imagine!

College Toiletries

Your college dorm bathroom will not be huge, and you have to share it with your roommate(s). So, consider buying your grooming and other toiletries items in smaller size, as otherwise space will get crammed. Just, stick with the mantra, “Less is More!”

Plus, if the color of your hand towels matches with those of your roommate, mark the first letter of your name or sign on their tags with a permanent marker to keep them getting mixed up.

College School Supplies

Don’t let your excitement of your first year make you forget about the school supplies! You will need notebooks to take notes and a notepad if you prefer paper to a digital tool. Don’t forget about flash drives, calculator, highlighters, and other things that will help with your study. Last of all, buy a backpack to carry your stuff around the campus.

Our dorm checklist will help you survive through the pressure and stress of early days. To save your precious closet and room space and to eliminate overlap, coordinate with your roommate because you surely don’t want to deal with two microwaves or two ironing boards in the same room! Plus, consider buying some items after you arrive at the college as it will help you figuring out what to add to or subtract from the list and also save on packing and shipping.

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