Hey you! Yes, I’m talking to you, trembling high school grad. Hope you had a minimally awkward time at orientation, learning everything you probably don’t need to know about Binghamton University. First off, thanks for picking up this copy of Pipe Dream, Binghamton’s free word on campus since 1946. You’ll soon find us to be a familiar face as you routinely take an issue on your way into the Lecture Hall, preparing yourself for a two hour class. But enough of that; you’ll eventually figure those things out on your own. Next, we here at Release, Pipe Dream’s Arts and Culture section, understand that this is a confusing time for you freshmeat and want to make sure we do all that we can to make this transition less tear-inducing for you all. We’d like to start with the essentials, literally. All of you are probably sitting right now saying, “ACK I’m living on my own! What do I bring? What do I not bring? NO MOM, I don’t want to go with you to Bed, Bath, and Beyond right now I’m stressed!” But fear not, as long as you know what the essentials are – clothes, toothbrush, blanket, etc. – here you can find out all the Binghamton-specific items to pack for the next nine months of your life.

You must absolutely bring:

An electric fan if you are living in an older building, like in College-in-the-Woods or Hinman College — Seriously, August is no joke here, and neither is September. One day you will wake up in a pool of sweat and realize that it’s June. There is no air-conditioning in these buildings, and you’ll be extremely sorry as you toss and turn from the unwavering heat, even at night.

A flexible plastic shower caddy with holes — Don’t let Target entice you with their cool container ones that have separate removable pieces for washing your face in the morning. Shower caddies that are made of hard plastic will collect water and actually become disgusting. Save yourself now, before you end up having to throw yours out and carry three bottles with you to the bathroom every single day.

Posters and pictures from home — Having a room with a lot of decorations will make your room super inviting, and could possibly assist you in making hallway friends during the first week. Lights also look really cool if you want to give off the “Yeah, I’ve been to Coachella, so what?” vibe. Additionally, having a plethora of pictures of you doing cool things with your high school friends can only help you on this social journey.

A good winter jacket — While it’s true that the heat can be brutal at the beginning of the semester, hell hath no fury like a Binghamton winter. For this reason you’ll need a seriously warm winter jacket. Make sure it’s not too bulky though. Not only is this horribly uncomfortable, but if you’re five minutes late to class, there is nothing quite like shedding layers while 300 of your peers look on.

A pair of rain boots and snow boots — No, these aren’t the same thing, and no, their individual importance can not be stressed enough. If you choose to wear them interchangeably, you will get snow in your rain boots, and you will get water in your snow boots. Your nice Hunter boots will crack in the cold, and your big snow boots will be too hot in the Spring. It’s just a fact. Also, an umbrella. Just bring it.