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Preparations for the Upcoming Year

August 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

Hello Parents,

Incoming students gathering during the beginning of Orientation Week

Incoming students gather during the beginning of Orientation Week

I hope you’re all having a great week! It’s been bittersweet here as Track B courses finish up, and students are getting ready to embark on their last two weeks of summer break before the 2014–15 academic year begins. Incoming first-year students are finishing up their last-minute preparations as they ready themselves to start their college career at Michigan Tech. (Saturday, August 23 is the beginning of Move-in Weekend for first-year students.) And upperclassmen are preparing to make the move back to Michigan Tech for another awesome year. With the start of school right around the corner, it’s important for your students to start preparations for the new year.

Room Items
If your student is living in the residence halls this year, the following kinds of items are recommended:

  • Blanket/comforter

  • Cleaning supplies

  • Cups/plates/utensils

  • Desk lamp

  • Dish soap

  • Fan

  • Full-length mirror

  • Hangers

  • Mattress pad and sheets (extra-long twin, measuring 36×80 inches)

  • Pillows

  • Plastic crates

  • Small personal safe

  • Snacks

  • Storage boxes/tubs

  • Tools

  • Towels

There are also items your student should leave at home:

  • Candles/incense

  • Electric heaters

  • Air conditioners

  • Halogen lights

  • High-school textbooks

  • Many suitcases

  • Toaster

  • Toaster oven/hot plate

These items are not allowed in the residence halls and will be confiscated if they are found in your student’s room.

Buying textbooks is one of the most important preparations your student can make before the start of the new year. Students can buy new and used books at Tech’s Campus Bookstore or at many online retailers. When buying textbooks online, it’s important to order them weeks before the start of classes to provide time for shipping. For students on a budget, I would recommend buying as many used textbooks as possible. However, for classes such as physics, math, or chemistry (that may require an online access code to complete course assignments), it’s important to be aware that used textbooks don’t come with access codes like new books do, and thus must be purchased separately. In cases when a class requires additional online resources, I recommend buying the book new, since new books already come with the access code.

It’s also important to be aware of the correct edition of the book to buy. Some students choose to buy the older, cheaper edition of the required textbook to save money, but these older editions may organize material in a different way, problem sets may be different, and there may be missing chapters or other information that the new book has.

Students also buy and sell their textbooks on Barkboard, Tech’s student-only online buying and selling forum. This is another great way to find good deals on the textbooks your students need.

School Supplies
Here are some highly recommended suggestions of what students should consider bringing to campus:

  • Paper and notebooks

  • Pens and pencils

  • Flash drive/thumb drive

  • Graphing calculator (TI-89 recommended)

  • Highlighters

  • Hole punch

  • Paper clips

  • Scissors

  • Stamps/envelopes

  • Stapler/staples

  • Tape

As you can see, there’s a lot to keep in mind as the summer finishes up and the school year begins. If you or your student have any questions about new school-year preparations or what to bring to campus, please feel free to email me at You can also look online at what Michigan Tech suggests your students bring at the Admissions Office website.

I wish your students the best of luck as they embark on a new academic year! I look forward to continuing to write to you through ParentNet as the new year begins. Enjoy the rest of your summer, and have a great weekend!