What my mom wishes she knew before I came to college

By Pari Apostolakos, Managing Editor for Reporting

Going to college is nerve-wracking for tons of reasons and not only for students. My parents were just as nervous – if not more – than I was when first coming to the University in the fall of 2017. But, lucky for you, they’ve learned a thing or two since then, and I’m going to share a few of their tips and tricks below.

Your kids have a lot of stuff

My parents were surprised and extremely annoyed when my belongings took over the house during the packing process. Your student will likely be bringing to school duplicates of things they already have at home: bedspreads, toiletries, desk lamps, you name it.

To avoid such a messy catastrophe, try to clear up some space in your home and designate it as your student’s packing area. This way, you won’t have the anxiety-inducing clutter sprawled over your entire home.

A little goes a long way

My mom is not a couponer in day-to-day life, and although you might be, don’t forget to use those savings to your advantage when stocking up for the school year. Even 20% off your purchase at a store like Bed Bath & Beyond can be a great help and allow your student to utilize those much-needed funds for something else. There are all kinds of deals out there for students going away to school; all you have to do is look for them (the internet is a magical machine).

Double-duty is the way to go

When you do finally take that shopping trip with your student, be sure to look for items that save space or have dual functions. In college, we’re oftentimes in close quarters with our peers and are not given much room to spread out – especially as freshmen, who are usually living in a residence hall. That’s why purchasing something like an ottoman which can also open up to store extra towels or clothing can help your student stay organized throughout the year.

If these insider tips don’t work for you and your student, don’t panic. Big lifestyle changes oftentimes double as great learning experiences, and although your student is the one leaving to get an education, you’ll learn things along the way as well. Soon enough, you just might have enough knowledge to write one of these columns yourself.

Pari is a sophomore in Media.

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