This is the second post in the “What I Wish I Knew Freshman Year” series. College is a huge transition in life. I hope that these posts are beneficial for anyone going through this change. Each of these posts will go as in-depth as possible. Be sure to read the first post on college roommates. Enjoy this guide on move in day!
Summer is a time to forget all about school and enjoy all the free time we have. However, the summer after you graduate high school is also spent preparing for college. You continue to make memories with your childhood friends and consider the memories you will make with your new college friends. I remember the entire summer leading up to my freshman year of college, one of the main things I constantly thought about was moving into my dorm.
It would be my first time living away from home and rooming with someone that wasn’t my sister. I was a big ball of excited and nervous. Because of my constant need to plan everything, I felt completely prepared for move in day (or so I thought). My goal is to prepare you as much as possible for a huge step in your life.
The Process Of Move In Day
Move in day can be a bit of a blur. Emotions are running high and you might forget to enjoy it. This happened to me. Being that I was moving to a school across the country, I hadn’t attended orientation yet. I spent the weekend moving into my dorm AND running back and forth to orientation. I literally knew no one at the school and my introvert self wanted to crawl into a ball. With that being said, let’s begin talking about the process.
Try to communicate with your roommate as much as possible. By planning how you want your room to be set up before hand, you will save large amounts of time. My roommate and I had a few options prepared but by the end of the day we ended up with a completely different set up. If your first few options don’t work out, don’t worry. Roll with the punches of move in day and get creative!
I am sure that every school is very different when it comes to entering the school. I went to a very small university where the student leaders stood at the entrance and waved signs around, cheering as every single car entered the campus. Although not every school will be this involved, be prepared to be welcomed in some way. Once we made it past the entrance we were directed where to go based on the hall you were moving into. There was a long line of people waiting for a parking space and even more student leaders ready to help move everyones belongings in. My roommate and I had planned to arrive at the school around the same time and were able to park close to each other. After we officially met each other, we began unloading.
Again my experience here will be very different because of the size of my school. As we unloaded we were directed to an area on the grass in front of the dorm building to stack all of our belongings. As we were unloading the cars, the student leaders were taking our things up to our room. If you are attending a much larger school, odds are you will be taking your own things straight to your own room to limit the risk of something being lost or stolen.
I recommend setting up your room how you want it before loading everything into your room. This will prevent loads of obstacles for you. From experience I can tell you it is beyond annoying trying to move your dresser when you have four suitcases in the way. Plus, if you have your room organized, you limit the chance of something being lost or stolen while your stuff sits outside your door.
This is by far the most overwhelming part of the day. If you thought packing was bad, imagine trying to figure out where you are going to put everything for the next year. Odds are, the first place you choose for some things will not be its end home. Patience is all I can suggest. It will be overwhelming having your parents, your roommate(s), and their parents all in the small room. Not everyone will have the same way of doing things so just remember to be patient. If you are uncomfortable with something or don’t like something a certain way, speak up. If you don’t stand your ground from the beginning you will end up with none of your own space in the room.
Don’t feel like you have to have everything unpacked right away. As I stated earlier I was running back and forth between orientation and my room. This made my unpacking process much longer than I wanted it to be. Remember that you are organizing your life for the next year and it is okay to take your time. Also keep in mind that whatever you do is not permanent. You can always change things later.
I HIGHLY recommend unpacking necessities first. You don’t want it to be late at night all of a sudden and you have nowhere to sleep but you have your clothes hung up. Focus on your bed first. Spend some time making it nice and comfortable. This will ensure you will at least get some rest after a long day. Also keep your shower essentials somewhere you can access easily. After a sweaty day you will for sure want to shower off before bed.
Advice For Move In Day
Whether you are the first, middle, or last child in your family to leave, it will be hard for your parents. Be considerate of their feelings. Don’t get snappy because you have had a long day. It doesn’t matter if you are close to home or across the country, BE NICE. Most importantly, tell them you love them and you’re thankful for their help. Remind them of this constantly.
DO NOT WAIT!!!! Don’t wait until you have two days left at home. You are essentially packing up your life. Odds are you will come across things from your childhood as you pack up your room. Stopping to relive the good ol’ days takes up time. Give yourself enough time to pack and double check that you have everything. Make a list then make another one. Do whatever you need to so that you feel most prepared for the move. Whatever you do, don’t bring your entire wardrobe!
Be Open Minded
This is a big change. Don’t go in expecting certain things because you will most definitely be let down. Try not to let small things bother you. Enjoy every moment. Be open to meeting new people from the beginning. My roommate went door to door greeting everyone as they were trying to move in their belongings. At the time I thought she was insane but some of those girls ended up being my closest friends.
Do you have any move in day tips? Let me know in the comments!