Top 5 MUST HAVE items for College Students

Almost all students have a backpack that holds a few essential items such as writing utensils, paper, folders and textbooks. However, there are a few items many students may not carry that could be a huge benefit. In no specific order are the top five items of 2012 that can highly assist any student and ease many college days.

Mini Stapler

Having your own mini stapler is a not-so-common item that could be very useful after printing out essays and other similar papers. Many instructors require students to staple their work, otherwise they may not accept them. This is an easy way to keep your work ordered, just make sure to have a supply of staples handy!


Post-It-Notes, aka sticky notes are so versatile and have many uses. Taking notes, bookmarking and creating reminders / to-do lists are just a few uses for these handy supplies.  They are inexpensive to buy and may very well save you from forgetting important dates, information and  academic notes.

USB Drive

If you do not own a USB drive give it a purchase. This is an easy way to transfer data files between computer devices without attaching files to emails or cloud/data storage. The USB drive I own is 2 gigs and flips out, or, attached (hidden) in my army dog tags. A few USB drives are actually key chain items or even mini skateboards! Find one that matches your style.

Laptop / Mac Book / Tablet 

Internet, word processing, calculator, PDF reader, music player, photo viewer, video editing and way, WAY more. I’m not even going to say this is optional, because if you do not personally own one [which I encourage if possible] you’ll be in your local college library using theirs. From online classes to digital textbooks, having this item [or access to it] is almost a must.

Echo Livescribe Smartpen

This item, unlike the others above, may need an introduction. In short, this pen is also an audio recording device that records and syncs simultaneously what you write in a companion notebook. You can also upload the pages to an online site and watch/listen to what you wrote/heard. Make sure to have that laptop for this feature! Take a quick look at it in action HERE! (And play around on the site to learn more about it).

Do you have any of these items? and/or Would you add anything else to the list? 

Mario Adkins is a senior at Grand Valley State University (GVSU). When not drawing or playing his favorite video games, he can be found on campus facilitating programs and events as both a resident assistant and vice president of membership for GVSU’s OΔK Circle–a national leadership honor society. Follow him on Twitter @zerolocked.


25 thoughts on “Top 5 MUST HAVE items for College Students

  1. I feel that is is very useful for a college student to have a printer. Yes, you can print free copies in the library but sometimes people don’t always make it to the library before it closes when a paper is due the next day.

  2. Ipod or anything that can hold music. I’ve found that having some kind of background noise while studying helps me keep my focus on what I’m doing because my room isn’t dead silent. 🙂

  3. I have everything but the smart pen. I would add highlighters or colorful pens because I tend to learn better when I can remember something if it is visually different. I take notes in different colors based off of importance.

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