Chapter 3: What to Bring

Don’t take the list below as creed as far as what to bring – you’ve lived for 18 years (give or take), and you know what you like & need. Bring those things. Don’t bring the others.

From “Get your 5Rs right:

  • Refuse what you do not need,
  • Reduce what you do need,
  • Reuse what you consume,
  • Recycle what you cannot Refuse, Reduce, or Reuse, and
  • Rot (compost) the rest.”

When you think about what you’re going to bring, we encourage you to Reuse what others have Recycled whenever you can & whenever it’s appropriate.

  • Check out the ABC Sale at the Congregational Church at the beginning of the year (this is a giant tag sale that includes a lot of things that Williams students have donated to the cause the year before).
  • Visit Goodwill & tag/garage/yard sales for items, either near home or locally in the Berkshires.
  • Check out the consignment section at Nature’s Closet in bustling downtown Williamstown.

And you can also always make a run to a nearby store if you forget something and you can’t find it in a Recycle location as noted above.


  • 1 set of extra long twin sheets (do NOT bring regular twin-sized – the mattresses are 36″x80″). 1 set is enough; you only sleep with one set of sheets. You will wash your sheets when they get dirty. Otherwise, you will just end up with two sets of dirty sheets and more laundry to do.
  • 1 extra long twin mattress pad.
  • 1 bath towel. Same deal as the sheets re: laundry.
  • Pillow.
  • Pillow case.
  • Blanket/comforter. Start with one. If you find yourself too cold as winter sets in, get another blanket then.
  • Hamper or Laundry Basket – one or the other will suffice.
  • Collapsable drying rack – you’ll save a few bucks on the dryers while you’re helping the environment!
  • Laundry detergent & dryer sheets.

You can purchase your own linens & bring them with you, or you can use the OCM Linens program sponsored by the Office of Student Life.

Personal Care Items

By now you should know what you need in this area – so bring what you need.

The basics, of course, are:

  • Soap.
  • Shampoo.
  • Toothpaste.
  • Toothbrush.
  • Deodorant.
  • Also a good idea to bring a small supply of your favorite pain/cold/flu meds, though you can always visit the Health Center when you’re under the weather, and they’ll have meds for you.

School Supplies

Bring what learning tools you used in high school. You may rework your learning style a little in college, but probably not so much as that you need to buy a 228 multi-colored highlighter pack.

The basics, of course, are:

  • Pens.
  • Pencils.
  • Paper.
  • Scissors.
  • Tape.
  • Stapler + staples.
  • Backpack.
  • A computer is very highly recommended (though there are several computer labs across campus and you may find you don’t even need one).
  • A calculator might come in handy occasionally for tests, but most of the time you’ll likely just use a calculator on your computer.


  • Clothes.
  • Power strips make it easier to turn off your appliances/electronics, and conserve energy. Plus, this will give you an advantage in the annual first-year energy saving competition!
  • Extension cords.
  • Fan.
  • Removable poster adhesive.
  • Storage containers. Most rooms come with a dresser, desk, and a hanging area for storage so calculate that into your storage needs.
  • Under the bed storage container.
  • Cell phone. Nearly every Williams student uses a cell phone. If you’re a die-hard land-line person, you can bring your own land-line phone, but be sure to bring a phone-card too for long-distance calls.


And DON’T bring the things found at this link – you don’t really need them, and you will get fined for having some of them.