**Please note...all of these suggestions are just that...suggestions. You know your student, what they like and will possibly use over the year.**

Link to the MTU packing suggestions page:


Please note the following items are on their DO NOT BRING list:

  • Candles/Incense
  • Electric Heaters
  • Air Conditioners
  • Halogen Lights
  • High School Textbooks
  • Many Suitcases
  • Toaster
  • Toaster Oven/Hot Plate

To get it out of the way early....the Infamous Pool Noodle....or Pipe Insulation

  • If you look at this picture of the bed, see the metal bar that will be right over their head when they sit at the desk? My son almost knocked himself out a few times on that bar. A pool noodle or pipe insulation attached with zip ties makes it much safer.
  • Also, when the bed is lofted above the desk, which I guess is a pretty standard configuration, it's really easy to keep hitting your head on the bed frame. The solution is to buy a pool noodle and cut it to slide on the metal frame. Zip ties come in handy for attaching the noodle.
  • Two noodles, one for the under the bed and one for the ladder up to bed.
  • Also good to cut one up and use on the ladder side. Makes climbing it much easier.
  • Hot water pipe foam also works great for the bed frame. 
  • I second the pipe foam tube instead of the pool noodle.....it's easier since it already has the slit in it....not to mention, isn't a crazy color. Home Depot or Lowes have them....
  •  If you are not the first ones to Wal-Mart or Ace hardware there will be no pool noodles, window fans nor extension cords.  

Here is a picture of pipe insulation.   You can get it at Swift's Hardware in Houghton, or at Lowe's or Home Depot.  It's precut, and it has adhesive on it so you don't need to cut it or use zip ties


Here is a pool noodle.  It needs to be cut and then attached to the bed via zip ties


Suggestions from the Michigan Tech Parents Facebook page:



stack of plastic drawers or a 2x3 cube shelving unit for in the closet 


  • ordered an "Emily" futon from Walmart and had it sent to her dorm.
  •  futon wont work in mcnair.
  • Futon in Wads took up most of the floor space but they were happy

Box fan - rooms tend to be warm - some use them all year

Over the door hanger for towel

Over the door pocket shoe holder on inside of armoire door for small things 

The desk chairs they furnish are not so comfortable so this is a worthy purchase to either bring up or send up early or order online!

Desk lamp




Sheets: Posts

You don't need to buy the dorm sheets sold by the university.   Here is a poll of where parents buy them:



Also see these posts for more info



Protected (and soft) mattress pad/Egg crate


Alarm clock or phone alarm - my son liked to put the alarm across the room so he had to get out of bed

Bunk bed tray 



Computer and all related items

Extra monitor


Extension cords/ Power strips

Coax cables/Ethernet cords (longer the better)

Head phones -  Full size and noise cancelling are popular with earbuds for walking around

Speakers - small bluetooth or large wired

TV - have seen all sizes coming and going. 

  • There is very little room and so much of what the kids watch now is via computer make sure the roomies talk / email to make those decisions. 
  • roommate went out and bought a big screen that at most may have seen use for video games.
  •  I would not buy smaller than 32", thinking ahead when they are out of the dorms
  • A tv with hdmi makes for a wonderful computer monitor



Laundry soap, dryer sheets, Color Catchers, laundry basket.  Washers & dryers (as of 2021) are free.

Clorox Wipes - well maybe for the girls :)




Books you have purchased

school/office supplies they like to use





Rain Coat/Umbrella

First Aid/sewing kit made of typical medication to avoid late night runs to walmart.

Winter coat/hat/gloves/boots/long underwear/snow pants

Dress clothes/suit and resume paper for Career Fair


Health insurance card

Shower caddie


Food items

Frig....the ones with a small freezer section are popular

Plates/silverware/pans/cups if they wish to use the kitchen in Wads

Coffee maker & supplies




zip ties (see noodle discussion)

bungee cords - helpful for a lot of things.  Some use them to hold their box fan in their window (helpful for some dorms that don't have large window ledges).

duct tape

"S" hooks / Carabeeners - used to hang backpacks, jackets, towels, hats etc on the bed rails or armoire doors

3M removable hooks

Sporting equipment - all sorts


Flashlight or app on phone



Bike - dorms have storage

Weapons - contact Public Safety

Fishing rod - command hooks on wall

Skis - can get locker at Mt Ripley, but they go fast

Hockey equipment - can get locker at SDC



Here is a post that discusses getting items to campus from distant states:


Items that parents have said they DID NOT NEED or USE

  • Extra blankets - rooms are warm
  • Robe
  • He is not taking his printer back, took up too much space on his desk, and they very rarely need to print things, most assignments/homework are submitted electronically.
  • No alarm clock either, he uses his phone.
  • He's taking less clothing.
  • Ethernet Cable - He might want one for the reliability, but my daughter tells me she had very few issues with WiFi. She didn't take an ethernet cable last year and doesn't seem to want one this year, either.


Back to the MTU FAQ page