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9 Backpack Essentials for College

by | Jun 20, 2024 | NPP Recommends, Resources for College Preparation

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Backpack essentials for high school or college helps with college success!

Packing an organized backpack for high school or college is essential to academic survival. It is much smarter to plan ahead for classes, emergencies, and daily occurrences than to just throw a bunch of stuff in your pack and go. Grab these backpack essentials for college!

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College Backpack Essentials! 9 Things That Will Make Each Day Easier!
9 Backpack Essentials for College 16

One thing that all the students I asked had in common, was that they didn’t think about any of this before they were in high school or college, depending on the age of student I asked. Now that they have been in school, these are the things that they make sure that they always carry.

Each student and schedule will be different. Sometimes even from one semester to another, so think carefully, and readjust as the semester continues. 

Here is a list of college student backpack essentials

I gathered this list from six current college students. There were no differences for the high school students I asked. It just depended on their class load at the time.

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9 Backpack Essentials for College 17

#1 Backpack essentials for college: Earbuds

Wireless earbuds– These will come in handy for walking across campus, working out, and listening to music while studying.

#2 Backpack essentials for college: Chapstick

Chapstick– This is long-lasting and has both UVA and UVB protection. It comes in a tube, not a stick, so it won’t melt.

#3 Backpack essentials for college: Water bottle

Water bottle– This bottle is great with many features. It folds up, has a wide mouth, leak proof, and is BPA free. I love mine like this for travel!

#4 Backpack essentials for college: Planner

Planner Basic or bullet, makes no difference! Just make sure you use one! If you need a planner because you are scattered or unfocused either with a diagnosis of ADD or not, these planners and tools are amazing!

#5 Backpack essentials for college: Extra layer

Jacket or hoodie-This is always great if there’s a cold classroom or you are just cold in general.

#6 Backpack essentials for college: Portable charger

Portable charger– You will need one for your phone for sure, but an extra charger for your laptop is a good idea as well. You never know what kind of day you will have! Here is a smaller option

#7 Backpack essentials for college: Small office supplies

Small office supplies–  I asked a number of students what this would include for them. These are the things that they listed. Small stapler, post-its, graphing calculator, tape, pencils and pens.   

#8 Backpack essentials for college: Various personal items

small pouch for personal items-Kleenex, hair ties, your favorite pain reliever, feminine products, and gum.

#9 Backpack essentials for college: Umbrella

Last but not least, an umbrella!-Don’t get caught out in the rain with one. This particular one is windproof, which also comes in handy.

Create a college survival kit for your backpack!

This is a totally separate post that has some overlap with this one. The College Survival Kit post has all the small things that might come in handy during a day out and about on campus!

This is by no means a complete list of college backpack essentials!

However, when you are planning on your first semester at college or your last semester, the biggest takeaway I have gotten from the students that I spoke with is to be organized and be prepared for a long day. One thing I forgot from this list would be hand sanitizer, (these are cute with cases and clip onto your key ring). Don’t forget it!

Backpack Essentials for College:  What You Must Have
9 Backpack Essentials for College 18

I hope these suggestions help your student with the backpack essentials they will need for college!

It was really hard to limit this list to 11 “backpack essentials for college students”, but I like a list that doesn’t overwhelm, so I kept it to the most necessary.

Be sure to check out my post about your teen turning 18, there are some really important things to know legally that you will want to go over with your teen!

Posts related to backpack essentials you need for college:

What You Need to Know When Your Teen Turns 18

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