To Pack or Not to Pack?

Nancy Monahan P’13 offers advice on making the decision on what to bring and what to buy.
For many local students, packing up all the dorm necessities is not a hassle. But what if you’re travelling from across the country or the world? Fear not. Here are some helpful tips to making sure your student is fully equipped without having to bring everything with you.

Tips for Packing

Bring what you can’t buy

With limited space, make sure your student brings what they won’t be able to get in Boston. Pictures, clothes, laptops, grandma’s quilt, instruments, and other one-of-a-kind and sentimental items deserve space in a suitcase. Your student will have no problem tracking down pillows, alarm clocks, and cleaning supplies here.

Order ahead of time

Bed Bath & Beyond offers a service to order products online and pick them up at one of their many locations. That way you and your student can move their luggage into their room then go pick up the extra odds and ends. Bed Bath & Beyond at Fenway can be accessed by the E line on the Green Line.

Ship what they can wait for

If your student moves in in September, they won’t need that winter parka or snow boots for a while. Don’t worry about shoving bulky winter items in. After your student moves in and you have returned home, ship their seasonal clothes and outerwear to them.

They don’t need everything on the first day

Everyone wants their child to be prepared, but they don’t need a vacuum cleaner, first aid kit, bulletin board, or desk lamp for the first 24 hours of living on campus. They will survive without them. Do not worry about making sure your student has everything on the first day. They will have plenty of time to figure out what they need and would like for their dorm room.

Know what can and cannot be in the dorms

One of the most unfortunate situations for parents, new students, and orientation leaders alike is when a student arrives at the dormitories with items that are not allowed in the dorms. These items can be found and are prohibited because they are fire and safety hazards. The College wants to keep your student and others safe. Student Orientation Leaders and Orientation Staff are required to monitor what enters the dormitories. The last thing they want to do is tell you that the refrigerator that you drove across the country is not allowed. Adhere to their guidelines so you don’t waste money on fridges that are too big or bean bag chairs that are flammable.

For more information, email or call 617-824-8561.