College Dorm Essentials

When I first began packing for my freshman year of college, I realized I was packing my entire life — well, for the most part.

I packed the usual clothes, shoes and obvious essentials such as my phone charger and desk supplies, but when I arrived to my dorm (or rather, apartment), I realized I forgot many college dorm essentials.

The following are just a few important college dorm necessities should make sure you have packed before your first day of college.

Twin XL Sheets

I don’t know of any college dorm room that doesn’t require twin XL sheets for the mattresses. While you may think you’ll just be able to take your twin sheets from your bed at home, think again. Twin XL sheets can be found in almost any place that sells bedsheets.


If you’re one of those students that has to play music while they study, headphones are a must.

Even if you’re not, headphones are great when it comes to listening to music in places such as a library or coffee shop. Listening to music straight out of your laptop will likely annoy the students or customers around you. Same goes for if you’re watching a movie on your laptop in a public place.

If you don’t have a set of headphones, the next time you’re out and about be sure to pick up a good pair — you won’t regret it.

Desk Lamp

When we move into the small dorm room we’re supposed to share with one (or more) people for a year, it can often be hard to adjust. We’re instantly put into an unknown environment, having to adjust to a stranger’s everyday routine.

If you’re a night owl and prefer to study your way through the night but your roommate likes to go to bed early, don’t fret. This happens to many people living in the dorms. When your roommate decides to go to bed early, turn off the light to the entire light and turn on your desk lamp. The lighting the lamp provides is just enough to light your study area without disturbing your roommate’s snoozing.

Ethernet Cord

If your college campus dorms don’t have wireless internet like mine did, investing in an ethernet cord is most definitely a college dorm essential. As a college student, you’re obviously going to need Internet.

My freshman year I even splurged for the longer ethernet cord so I could reach the plug all the way to my bed when I chose to study there.


Let’s be honest. When you walk into your room after a long day and know you have hours of studying ahead of you, the last thing you want to see is a huge mess in your room. Buying containers is a great way to stay organized.

Whether you decide to use them for organizing your school supplies within your desk or sorting hair supplies if you’re a girl, containers are a definite must. They will help you stay organized and make your room look a lot neater in the process.

Shower Shoes

Dorm room showers. Hopefully those three words were enough to convince you that you need shower shoes. If not, just think about walking barefoot in the bathroom of your dorm.

No. Just think about all of the college students before you who have not only lived in these dorms, but also showered in the same showers. Drop everything your doing and go buy yourself some shower shoes before moving into your freshman dorm. You won’t be sorry.

Laundry Bag

Hopefully by the time we enter college we know how to do our own laundry. If not, there’s no need to waste anymore time. Without a laundry basket or bag, our dirty laundry would be scattered all over our floor.

I prefer a laundry bag over a laundry basket for the mere convenience that laundry bags come with a strap and are easier to haul across the dorm to the laundry room.

When packing for college, it’s important to make sure you’ve gathered all of your college dorm essentials. Whether making a list to remind you is what you plan to do or not, don’t forget these vital supplies!

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Kassi Luja

Kassi Luja

Kassi Luja is a junior at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo pursuing a degree in journalism with a concentration in news-editorial. At school, she can often be found in the Mustang Daily newsroom where she works as a copy editor. Outside of school, she enjoys reading, listening to music and spending time with family and friends.
Kassi Luja

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