Five essentials to pack for your first semester at Sweet Briar

Posted on August 12, 2016 by Janika Carey

Move-in day is just around the corner, and you’re so ready for college: You’ve joined the Class of 2020 Facebook group, met your roommate, and the two of you are already decorating your dorm room — mentally, of course. As far as you’re concerned, Aug. 19 can’t come soon enough. But what to bring? You’ve probably got the basics covered, but here’s a list of five items you might not have thought about.

  1. Sunscreen: It’s sunny at Sweet Briar. Take it from Outdoor Program director Kate Macklin ’13, who nearly always has one eye on the sky: “You will want it before you think to go out and buy it.” Whether you’re studying on the library patio, going for a swim in Lower Lake or running the Dairy Loop, you’ll be glad you packed something to protect your skin.
  2. A blanket you can use outdoors: Slather on that sunscreen you bought and hang by the lake or chill on the dell between classes. There’s nothing like a power snooze in the warm sun to recharge your batteries!
  3. An umbrella and/or raincoat: Despite all that sunshine, this is the Old Dominion, and as Macklin puts it: “In Virginia, when it rains, it pours.”
  4. An honest-to-goodness alarm clock: This suggestion comes from SGA president Jessie Schuster ’17, who says a cell phone is fine but, “sometimes it’s nice to have the consistency of an old-fashioned, plugged-in alarm clock (with backup batteries). That way, if your phone dies while you’re sleeping, or breaks, you won’t miss class!”
  5. Ear plugs: When the 3 a.m. dance party next door is seriously plucking your nerves — not to mention disturbing your sleep — earplugs are your friends.

But wait, there’s more.

6. Yes, we said “five essentials,” but because leaving home for the first time is so momentous, we’re breaking the rules. Besides, we think these suggestions from former student Elizabeth St. John ’16 are good advice: “Be sure to pack extension cords/surge protectors and a tool box. Being the one girl with a hammer is a great way to make friends on move-in day!”