Dany: What to Leave Behind

Hey everyone! I hope you are all enjoying your last few weeks of summer before the semester finally starts! These last days can be pretty bittersweet: saying goodbye to all your friends, enjoying the last of your mom’s home-cooked meals, trying to decide what to bring with you and what will stay behind. Anyone remember that scene in Toy Story 3 when Andy can’t decide whether to bring Woody or Buzz Lightyear with him to college? A more accurate dilemma has never been portrayed.

That said, I’m sure many of you are now beginning the most daunting of tasks: packing your life away. I am here to bring you some advice. While mostly everything you read will be frantic reminders of things you absolutely must have in college, here are five things you definitely won’t need:

1. Your high school t-shirts

All those senior shirts, club t-shirts, spirit day shirts that have been accumulating in your drawer for the past four years – take it from me and leave them all behind. BU loves to give out free stuff, especially t-shirts. Within a few weeks, you’ll have a whole new set from all the clubs you joined and all the giveaways you took advantage of.

2. Old school notebooks

You thought you were clever saving your tenth grade world history notebook didn’t cha? Let’s be real: your upcoming courses will render your old notes useless. Chances are you’ll forget you even brought them and they’ll just sit in some dark corner of your desk collecting dust for a year. Your professors, classmates, and the Internet is all you need.

3. Candles

They’re not allowed. They’re dangerous in a dormitory setting. I know it sucks. I love candles and how they make a room smell so good and how relaxing they can be. But really, just don’t bring them. They’re banned, it’s a fire hazard, trust me, it’s not worth it. Those wall plug-ins and air fresheners will work perfectly in their place.

4. Surplus storage units

Here is the irony with storage units – they take up space. I’ve found that the most useful and necessary storage units are the ones that go under the bed. Anything else, I would suggest waiting until you get to your room and seeing how much space you have left and how much stuff you still actually need to store away. That way you can make sure you get one or two that will fit your needs, and not four or five that will take up the entire room.

5. School supplies

You need something to write on and you need something write with. Anything else (rulers, glue, markers, etc.) is totally unnecessary. And I would just wait and pick up a few notebooks once you’re here instead of bringing stuff from home. Each class is different. For some, you’ll get by with taking notes on your laptop. Others you might need a binder for all the handouts and papers. Wait until the first day and your syllabus will tell you everything you need to know. Same goes for textbooks!
I hope this helps as you begin the packing process and saves you at least a little space in your suitcases and boxes! I know it’s hard to leave but it’s important to remember the amazing journey you’re about to start and how many incredible moments you have ahead. You all have so much to be proud of and it only gets better from here! See you all in a few weeks!

Tom: August, the Month of Intense Packing

Hey guys! The month of July is shortly coming to a close which only means one thing... August is right around the corner. Before you know it, you guys will be new freshmen here in the fall moving in to Warren Towers, using your dining points for the first time at the GSU, and pulling all-nighters to push yourself through finals.

While spending the end of my summer in Boston, I'm using most of August prepping for when I direct my first show, All Shook Up, in the fall. But for all you new terriers, I know you will be spending August trying to decide what to pack for what will become your new home for the next year.

Regardless of if you live in Warren, West, or some random brownstone on campus, all college freshmen need the same things. Here's a tip guide to walk you step by step through the packing process so grab your nearest parent and their wallet and get ready to shop! Most of the things below can either be bought at Bed, Bath & Beyond or similar retailer (Target can be super helpful as well), or can be bought at BU Barnes & Noble on campus for those of you far away.

1) Outfitting Your New Room - The most important place to start is to fix up your new bedroom. You'll need all the necessities: pillows, comforter (Extra-Long Twin!) and sheets. You should definitely invest in getting a good mattress pad - you can use it all four years and it will keep you super comfortable for all those times when you just need a good night's sleep. Pick a color and design that you like for your bedspread and match it with wall decorations that will make your new room as much like home as you can.

2) All the Extras - In addition to the necessities, a few small things throughout the room will really make your room perfect. A fan, alarm clock, and trash basket will go a long way. A fan will help you stay cool throughout some hot days in September. Although most people use their phone, I would invest in an alarm clock for all those times you drop your phone and are helpless until the apple store has an available appointment. A trash basket for... well trash.

3) Bathroom Essentials - Chances are, most of you will be sharing a common bathroom with your floor. As horrifying as it may sound for you clean freaks out there, trust me you'll be fine. Invest in a shower caddy, a bunch of big bath towels, and some shower shoes (cheap Old Navy $2 flip flops go a long way) and you'll survive sharing your first bathroom just fine.

4) Noms, Noms, Noms - What food to pack!? A key question for every freshmen coming in. Really - it's up to you. It's hard to advise students here because everyone is so different. Personally, I try not to fill my room with food since I spend most of my time heading to the dining hall to eat. If you think you're someone who likes to stay home and have your own time, I'd definitely get some food for your room. But if you think you'll be out and about most of the day, I'd say keep the snacks to a minimum. Tip: Ramen Noodles are a great purchase to break out for when you are stuck inside with a cold. Also - a brita filter goes a long way to keep you hydrated late at night.

I hope you found this guide helpful. Feel free to tweet me up (@tschrank) or shoot me an email throughout August and I'll help you on the packing hunt, or any other things that may come up. Have a great end to another wonderful summer!

Taylor: Let the Packing Begin

Taylor ImageWithin nearly every aspect of our lives, a box innately deems presence. For instance, there are granola boxes, jewelry boxes, cereal boxes, cable boxes, boxes of chocolate, and Disney channel once aired a hit toddler show entitled “Out of the Box”. It’s hard to fathom that an object of its simplicity could have so much dominance and importance. Don’t freight, you’ll soon embrace the smell of cardboard and the taunting puzzle of box folding as packing season has begun.

Figuring out what was worthy of packing, shipping, and ordering for school fall semester was a summer long quest. After what seemed like hours of convincing my mom that Mr. Bear could not join my collegiate embarking I realized that other materialistic sacrifices needed to be made as well. Coming to this conclusion unfortunately resonated the day before departure, once I weighed my luggage. I must admit that within the process of packing it is often forgotten that return is likely. Although it’s great to be prepared and take those shoes that you may wear once every blue moon being realistic saves time and money.

I would suggest checking out Bed Bath and Beyond’s College Checklist. For those unfamiliar with stores around BU, the nearest Bed Bath location in proximity to the Warren Towers and the Student Union is less than ten minutes away in Fenway Park. BU does an awesome job with assisting students in the moving process. In fact, hundreds of large yellow wheeled bins are distributed to students free of charge for picking up in-store packages.

Amongst the many things that I have written on my bucket list, I’ve always wanted to use a registry clicker (a device often shown on wedding movies and TV shows).To my surprise Bed Bath and Beyond allowed me to scan all of the items that wanted in my dorm room and with one employees magic a checked selection awaited my Boston landing. I was then able to choose what I still wanted from my prior scanning and pay at the Boston Fenway location.

Packing has always been a nightmare for me. A bit of advice: Get it done early! In addition, don’t try to pack your house. I quickly realized when packing to come home for the summer that I had collected tons of clothing and merchandise from various sales within a year’s span. The box dilemma emerged again along with hours of deciding what to sacrifice for good.

Pack Up and Gear Up for an Amazing First Year!

Taylor W.