Current Students' Best Tips for Move In
Moving into college is one of the most exciting and simultaneously incredibly hectic experiences you will ever have. Figuring out how to pack up my life into a few suitcases and fly them to New York all the way from California was truly a challenge … but knowing that my final destination was Barnard made it all worth it! That being said, move-in day can be a lot to navigate. I’ve compiled a list of tips from current students, including advice they wish they would have been given when they were first years. Best of luck with move in and remember it will all work out!
Check the weather in advance and dress appropriately. New York in August can be incredibly hot, especially if you’re lifting heavy suitcases and moving boxes. Make sure you have on light clothes and comfortable shoes. (Pro tip: if you are moving into Reid or Brooks, try to have a fan easily accessible to plug it in and turn it on as soon as you get into your room!)
Allow yourself to feel whatever emotions come to you in the moment. I remember thinking I wouldn’t cry but I ended up ugly-crying while saying goodbye to my mom. Everything you are feeling — whether it’s sadness about leaving your family, excitement about starting college, nervousness about meeting your classmates — is valid!
Remember to bring small items that remind you of home! One really important part of dorm life is making the space uniquely yours.
ResLife has a whole “cart choreography” to help keep up a good move-in flow, so follow the directions of everyone with reslife shirts or name tags. They’ve been preparing for weeks and weeks to welcome you and want to make this a seamless process!
Take advantage of the free shuttle trips to Bed, Bath & Beyond to buy anything you may be missing. For students who live closer to campus (or for students who don’t tend to overpack), you can wait to buy some items during these trips. I’d say don’t bring things you won’t need for several weeks that can easily be bought elsewhere. (I had to make, like, three trips using the luggage cart with one girl last year who brought a lot of non-essentials that honestly barely fit into her Brooks quad). It just makes move-in a lot easier, a lot faster, and a lot less stressful if you can help it.
Take pictures! You’ll want to remember this day and this moment when you’re a graduating senior, or later when you’re an alum (and be sure to also tag ResLife & Admission’s Instagrams!).
Coordinate with your roommate! You can discuss the aesthetic of your room and plan who will bring what. You can also coordinate what time you’'ll arrive so that you can take turns moving in, or move in simultaneously (your preference).
Don’t lose your NSOP guide/schedule! You’re going to want to know where you need to be and when.
Move-in day doesn't mean your room needs to be 100% done. Don't stress too much about getting every single picture and poster on the wall -- you'll have plenty of time to decorate during NSOP. Instead, enjoy the experience and the special time you get to spend unpacking with your family.
Just because it’s in the “dorm essentials” area of Target doesn’t mean you’ll actually need/want it!
As nice as it might seem to get all your shopping done before you arrive, it makes a TON of sense to wait until you see the room to make final decisions. I bought a bunch of storage boxes last year without realizing that my Reid room had a ton of built in storage already.
Try to meet the people on your floor and connect with them as early as possible. Some of my closest friends now all lived on my floor during my first year.
You can mail items or order online to your mailbox in advance so you can just pick it up the day you get there instead of packing more items.
You got this!