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By Ebisa (7/18/2016)


It’s getting close to that time of year again. You’re start to see those back-to-school commercials on TV and every store seems to have sales on top of sales on different school-related items. However, this year is a bit different for you because this year you are going to move out of your home and start a brand new chapter of your life away at college.

This time of year is simultaneously exciting and nerve-wracking— so to take of some of the pressure of packing for your first year away, I made an awesome list of some things that you will want pack, along with some packing hacks and tips from current students on moving into your new home at college!

I even split the list up into different categories so that it’s easier to go back and find what you’re looking for! Getting organized right off the bat.

PS: If you are questioning ANYTHING, please, please contact the experts over at Residence Life! They know everything and will have you covered.

School Supplies

  • Backpack (with lots of space, you’re going to take it everywhere)
  • Binders (to organize any papers you get in your classes)
  • Folders and Notebooks
  • Pens/Pencils/Highlighters (you will be writing and highlighting a lot)
  • Post-It Notes/Index Cards (for reminders/flash cards)
  • Whiteout (we all make mistakes)
  • Scissors (don’t run with them)
  • Planner (being organized is BIG)
  • Laptop (there are computer labs, but if you can make it work, it is nice to have)
  • Headphones (for when you want to get “in the zone”)
  • Flash Drive (it’s always nice to have extra space to save your work)
  • Ethernet Cable (faster Internet for Netfl…doing homework)


  • Mattress pad (so it can feel like you’re sleeping on a cloud)
  • Sheets (twin XL)
  • Comforter (for comfort obviously)
  • PIllows
  • Pillow Cases
  • Blanket(s) (they come in handy during the winter)
  • Storage Containers
  • Laundry Basket/Bag (…time to learn to do laundry)
  • Clothes hangers
  • Box fan
  • Power strip


  • Seasonal Clothing (don’t want to have to wear shorts during the winter; you don’t have to bring clothes for the full year though, just make sure to have at least one or two cold-weather items just in case)
  • Swimming Suit (for all you fans of swimming, Albee Hall Pool is the place for you!)
  • Beach Towel
  • Bathrobe
  • Shower Shoes (don’t forget these!)
  • Professional Attire (you never know when you have to get fancy)
  • Workout Clothes/Sneakers (best worn at the REC center)


  • Shower Caddy (so you don’t drop things and have to pick them up with a towel on)
  • Bath Towels
  • Kleenex (comes in handy during allergy/cold season)
  • Tylenol/Advil/Pepto-Bismol (we don’t always feel great so it’s nice to have just in case)
  • Personal Hygiene Items (you make more friends when you smell good)


  • Cups (in addition also bring a water bottle)
  • Bowls/Plates (microwaveable safe!!)
  • Coffee Maker/Keurig (for those of you that can’t function without coffee like myself)
  • Chip Clips (nothing is worse than a stale potato chip)
  • Silverware
  • Napkins/Towels (if you’re bad at getting food in your mouth like me these are BIG)
  • Dish Soap/Dish Towel (no one likes dirty dishes)


  • Windex
  • Dust Spray
  • Disinfectant Spray
  • Air Fresheners (so it smells like you live in a field of lilies)
  • Laundry Detergent/Dryer Sheets (again, you gotta learn to do laundry)
  • Small Vacuum (to catch those dust bunnies)


  • Command hooks (to put up picture/posters on the brick wall)
  • Basic Tool/Handy Kit (never know when something might break! your front desk will also have one of these.)
  • Lint Roller
  • Playing Cards/Games (game nights!)
  • Flat Screen TV (so you can watch “Game of Thrones”)
  • Gaming Console
  • Futon

There are a lot more things you can bring— and a whole lot of things you should leave at home— so click here to view a full list of what to bring and not bring.

You can also check out room layouts for each hall, which will show you what big stuff is included in your room already. Just visit the site, click your hall and then select “room layout” in the corner!

Packing Hacks!

  • Label all your boxes, this way you won’t be looking through boxes for something.
  • Choose storage that isn’t super bulky, so it can slide underneath your bed or futon. Stackable or functional storage is good too.
  • Use vacuumable bags to pack so that you have more room to pack, this way you won’t have to carry huge luggage.
  • Get a tray or shelf and label it “everyday essentials.” Put your everyday essentials (phone, keys, wallet, Titan ID) in that space so you never lose them. .
  • Pack heavier items in a suitcase with wheels… no need for back problems.
  • Wrap all your chargers/cords neatly, label them, and use a twist tie to make sure they don’t unravel. It can be helpful to color-code or label them too, so you don’t get them mixed up with your roommate.
  • Don’t procrastinate when you’re packing! Chances are greater that you will forget something if you do.
  • Coordinate with your roommate so you don’t bring duplicates of big items that you both will use, like a TV, futon, vacuum, etc.
  • Write out everything you know you want to bring ahead of time so you can track what you already have. Shopping can get out of control if you forget what you already bought. The list will also be helpful later when you’re checking to make sure you have everything.
  • Remember that Oshkosh isn’t located in a black hole and that if you forget something, there are plenty of places to go to buy a new one or restock your supplies. 🙂

Tips From Current Students!

  • “Bring a planner and USE IT! You’ll need it a lot more than you think and it’ll keep you on top of all of your assignments. Plus you never know how many extra activities you’ll get involved in on campus! If you’re not into writing, Google Calendar works great too.” – Abby (Senior)
  • “Use command strips to hang up all those cool pictures you have! They are very strong and easy to remove from the walls without removing paint. Plus they are reusable, you just have to buy new backings for them every year.” – Matt (Senior)
  • “To save a ton of time on move in day use trash bags to transport your clothes on hangers! Just cut a hole on the bottom of the bag and slide the hangers through that and tie up the bottom! When you arrive just hang it up and rip the bag off!” – Ashley (Junior)
  • “Having a few cleaning supplies can go a long way. Don’t be caught without paper towel, disinfectant wipes and a small vacuum!” – Jon (Senior)
  • “Instead of using all cardboard boxes to pack your stuff, plan on using a couple rubbermaid tubs to bring items. These tubs can then be used all year to store stuff that you don’t use frequently. For example, I leave all my winter stuff in a tub until it gets cold. It helps if the storage tubs are small enough to stack in your closet or slide under the bed/futon.” – Marshall (Junior)

All right! That’s our list so far. Does anyone have any questions about anything? Or any current students have any tips they want to share to make packing for the first year a little easier? Comment below!