It’s about that time of the summer! Every possible store on the planet is doing back to school shopping! All the stores glisten with new crayons, backpacks, and tissues galore!

However, this time you aren’t worried about what your high school locker is going to look like this year. No, you’ve got a greater space to work with – your residence hall room!


Photo by Amy Nelson ’20

If you’re anything like me, you want to know what you’re getting into before you get into it. And that’s okay!

When it comes to Move-In Day, it’s a bit nerve wracking. You’re excited to go somewhere new, sad to leave your hometown friends and family behind, and you’re trying your hardest to keep everything together! Moving isn’t easy at all!

That’s why I prepared this little guide, so you can make moving less of a hassle and much easier!

Here is John’s Declassified Moving Survival Guide:

  1. Start packing early – a few weeks early. Start with packing things you know you will use.
  2. You do not need to pack every article of clothing you have. Pack summer and fall clothes. When you go back for Thanksgiving Break, swap to your winter gear. You can thank me later.
  3. You can ALWAYS find free boxes lying around. This may sound gross, but the boxes from fast food restaurants are usually pretty big. If you have a friend in the fast food business, have them give you some boxes. (Hint. Try to use boxes that had only frozen food in them! This is coming from experience) Otherwise big Rubbermaid containers work well too!
  4. Label, label, label your boxes with what they’re containing. This will help you with arranging what things go where! That way you’re not digging through your boxes when you’re moving in!
  5. Get to your hall early! That way you beat the rush and you have time to move in and grab lunch somewhere with your parents!
  6. Pack only the essentials! If your belongings don’t fit in the back of a minivan or average sized car, you’re bringing too much! All the halls supply all the basic furniture, so you’ll need bed linens, towels, toiletries, some basic school supplies, and your clothes.
  7. Bring tools! You have no idea when you’ll need them! Two screwdrivers and a hammer are lifesavers! Trust me.
  8. It’s not the end of the world if you can’t bring everything. You can easily buy things when you move in at Target or Wal-Mart downtown!
  9. Don’t sweat the small stuff! Everyone is in the same position you are!
  10. Breathe! It’ll be over soon!
  11. It’s always hot when people are moving in. Always. So, wear loose and light clothes.
  12. The elevators are always packed (at least when I’m using them!). Keep calm and only use the elevator if you absolutely have to.
  13. Unpack AFTER you move everything in.
  14. After you move in, you wouldn’t believe how great a well-deserved shower feels like. It’s a real workout!
  15. Keep a positive attitude!
  16. Be open-minded!
  17. Remember, YOU are going to be living in your room, not your parents. As long as you follow steps 15 and 16 you’ll love your new space!

After the moving process is done, your parents have already hit the road, and you’re about to go to your RA’s floor meeting, make sure you start getting to know the people in your floor and building.

My advice is to be outgoing (note, I said outgoing, not fake)! Worried because you’re shy? Don’t be! Everyone is in the same boat you are! A simple smile, saying hi, and introduction will always pay off!

If you have questions at all during this process, find your RA, the front desk of your building, or contact the Housing and Residence Life Office. They’d love to help you out!

Happy Moving! See you soon!!