A few years ago, my god-daughter graduated from high school and headed off to college soon after. For her graduation gift I gifted her this special curated survival kit in order to survive her first year in college. Since then, this has been my go-to gift for graduates. Of course, you can curate the kit to fit your specific grad. For me, I wanted to create something based off of my own experiences from college.
I printed off the list and shopped for each of the items listed. I placed all of the items inside a tote along with a copy of the list so that the grad could refer back to it when needed. Going to college brings on so many different emotions for everyone involved, but especially for the graduate. You find yourself in a foreign place where you’re expected to thrive and excel in all areas of life. It can get tough. Hopefully this kit lightens the load just a little.
Chewing Gum– Good for chewing while studying or just hanging out.
Make-up Bag– Good to throw in your gym bag when whenever you work out (you can find guys in the gym…IJS) or for quick weekend trips here and there. When I couldn’t make it home…I often would go home with my friends or roommates. You certainly learn a lot about yourself and other people.
Tide to go Stick– To get rid of those stains from all those parties you will attend 🙂
Notepad– For writing quick notes, grocery reminders (yes, you have to grocery shop now), studying, or jotting down campus numbers. Network! Network! Network!
Peppermint– Peppermint is known to the smooth the stomach. There will be a lot of “college firsts” this year! First time on campus as a freshman. First time going to class. First time sleeping alone in a foreign place, etc. These will be a “Life Saver” (I purchased Life Saver Peppermints).
Sleeping Mask– Let’s face it! Having a roommate isn’t what it’s all cracked up to be. Some of us are lucky to get a perfect roommate and it usually takes a few years until you find the perfect one. I have so many roommate stories. One time, I came home late, my roommate had the light switched taped so I couldn’t turn on the light when I walked in. Long story short, I ended up moving out. Another roommate didn’t like people sitting on her bed or doing anything in the room. You will soon find out that you can’t live with everyone. That is ok!
Duct tape– See above. You might need it. LOL
Popcorn– This is good for movie night, study night, game night, or a midday snack.
Oodles of Noodles– At some point, you’re not going to want any more cafeteria meals and you will not have any money to eat out. Your parents will say…I’m not sending you anymore money! This is when these will be your best friend! Believe me when I tell you!
Wal-Mart Gift card– If you’re anything like I was when I was in college, Wal-Mart was our essential store. For some reason, we always did our Wal-Mart runs at midnight too. Don’t ask me why. I guess we thought we were grown and could do what we wanted. Haha.
Advil– Sometimes, college can be stressful, and headaches are known to occur. Believe me, this will come in handy!
Tissues– Of course these are great for when you are sick. You’re in an unfamiliar place, so that may just happen. But, from my personal experience, these tissues were my best friend after I studied my tail off and still didn’t past the exam. I called my mom crying on the phone. I was devastated. These tissues were also my best friend, after I got myself all involved with a young guy here and there and that didn’t work out either. Just save them for a rainy day….if you know what I mean!
Quarters– You do want clean clothes, right! Here’s a little change to help you at some point! HOWEVER, if you’re able to find you a friend in college who is local, I would suggest that you get in good with her. Maybe she’ll invite you to her parents’ house to wash clothes. You’ll get free washing and probably a home cooked meal too! Worked for me!
Kit Kat– This is to remind you that sometimes you just have to take a break. There will be nights when you study all night. There will be days when you feel like you have so much to do and not enough time to do it in; projects, twenty page papers. It’s coming, but don’t fret. Just learn when you need to take a break and everything will be fine.
Storage Tote– Dorms are small. You will not have enough closet space or drawers. The best way to deal with this is to start gravitating towards things that can be used for more than one purpose. Hence, this tote! Use this Tote for additional storing, fast trips to the grocery, beach day, as a cooler of sorts for those football games, small loads of laundry, cleaning supplies, toiletries, etc. The number of things it can be used for are endless.
Security– There wasn’t a gift I could really give for security but I’d like to leave you with some advice. While you are away, please be very safe. Always walk with someone, especially at night. You have to protect, YOU! If you’re meeting a guy, take someone with you. Again, especially at night! Always, let someone know where you are. Keep your doors locked. Trust no one! Make yourself aware of where the campus police are located for your sake as well as others.
Congratulations graduates and WELCOME to the BEST YEARS of your LIFE! From this day forward, remember that “Life is like a coin. You can spend it anyway you wish, but you can only spend it once!”
Please let me know how your kits turned out!