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Just Throw it in the Bag: A Collegiette’s Guide to Packing for Class

Nine times out of ten, I’m that girl wearing a crewneck sweatshirt in the middle of a rainstorm; hair dripping in puddles next to my desk, makeup halfway down my face, and pants soaked to my skin. In no way, shape or form is this attractive, which is why after three years of college, I can finally share my knowledge on what college ladies must never be caught without while on campus!

Don’t be a wet doggy
Harrisonburg weather is 100% unpredictable. It seems like every time the forecast says rain and I gear myself up with my raincoat, umbrella and rain boots, the skies clear and I’m left walking around campus sweating, clunking around in my boots and swishing through the library with my rain coat; a burden I don’t want to be carrying every time the weather man is wrong. However, if there is even the slightest chance that it’s going to rain that day, a small umbrella in your purse in a necessity. Don’t be a wet doggy dog!

Mappy, Notebook, Planner? Check!
During the oh-so-wonderful FrOG week, your FrOG gives you a “mappy” of campus and tells you how they still use theirs and blah, blah, blah, right? The reality of it all is: it’s true! Junior year has come and gone and I still find myself glancing at my mappy if I need to find a random new building on campus. The best thing for getting around during that first week of classes? Slip your mappy in your bag so you’re not that girl walking aimlessly around the quad and nearly getting hit by bikers (trust me, they’re scary).

Other paper essentials? A notebook and a day planner are collegiette must-haves! A lot of times professors will give you additional course materials the first week of class, so having a place to write those down is important (don’t be the girl asking around to “borrow a piece of paper”).

Smart, Chic, Shoes
Campus isn’t a runway. In other words, leave the stilettos at home, collegiettes. Let’s face it, getting out of bed is enough of a struggle. Trying to come up with a decent outfit is arguably harder.

Trying to walk around a 18,000 person campus in some strappy, heeled shoes… that’s what I like to call “shoe-icide” (thanks, Fabolous). Of course the first week of class you want to make a good impression, so you may want to spring for a different shoe than the standard flip-flop – and that’s awesome! But if you want to look fashionable and still feel comfortable, go with a pair of flat gladiator sandals or a pretty colored pair of Toms.

M is for Moisturize
Picture this: you’re sitting on the quad reading a book before class (of course it’s probably 50 Shades of Grey or The Hunger Games series rather than an actual textbook, but who cares), when all of the sudden the cute guy who sits across the room takes a seat next to you and asks you what you’re reading (boys clearly don’t understand that we know they can read the cover…). But instead of leaning in close, feeling confident and ready to turn him into your very own Christian Grey, you realize that you forgot to put lotion on this morning, and that mini dress isn’t doing a good job at hiding it.

Something like having dry skin can make you feel self-conscious all day long, so make sure before you leave your room you throw some body lotion and chapstick in your purse. My favorites are from Bath and Body Works. Keep those legs smooth and those lips soft, ladies!

Between getting your dorm room fit for a princess, finding where all the hotties on campus hang out and exploring the wonders of D-hall and E-hall, don’t stress over your skin, shoe-wear, getting lost and the weather! Making sure you’re comfortable will get you on track for the best year ever.

I'm currently a Senior WRTC major and Human Resource Development minor at James Madison University. I'm an executive member of Alpha Sigma Alpha Sorority and also an executive member of the Human Resource Development Club. I've been involved in HerCampus JMU since my freshman year and am from New Fairfield, CT!
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