After Mod Squad Pete accepted the invitation to attend the University of Virginia in late April, we all — student and parents alike — began to receive regular correspondence from UVa. We all have tasks to take care of with deadlines attached.
Some didn’t surprise me — both summer orientation registration and the housing application were due by June 1st. The catalog of linens, hampers, shower pak [sic] and more did.
The “Complete Campus Collection – 26-piece Value Pak“, also described as “#1 Student Choice” and “your best deal” could give Pete beautifully matched sheets, comforter, fleece throw, blanket, towels, hamper, underbed storage solution, and one bedside buddy (fabric organizer with pockets and a flap that slides between mattress and bed frame).
We will need to purchase extra-long twin bedding, but we won’t be buying the complete campus collection. For one reason, Pete received a great set of towels from an aunt and uncle for graduation. I’m not sure Pete cares much about a fully matched bedding set.
Then there was the computer catalog. Or the “UVA Class of 2016 Student Computers & Dorm Essentials” catalog. We have received three or four computer sales pitches now, with a letter from the University CIO highlighting all the benefits of buying via the Computing at Virginia or CAV program.
Ok, we do need to purchase a Mac PowerBook for Pete, but I’m not yet sold on the CAV service and UVA-installed software being worth the additional costs beyond what we could purchase directly from Apple, including AppleCare.
And those dorm essentials? Fans, refrigerators, microwaves, carpets and TVs? If Pete were attending a college hundreds of miles from home, purchasing a fan through the college and having it delivered to his dorm room might make sense. But I’m a bit too old-fashioned to consider a TV an essential for his dorm room.
Plus, Pete was able to watch three Star Wars movies on his iPod a year or so ago while I drove hundreds of miles on a college-visit-road-trip. He doesn’t need a television.
I’m interested in hearing what other parents of new college students have done. Please let me know in comments.
Here’s what we’ve done so far at our house: Pete wrote a few UVa students he knows from high school and asked about their experiences. I wrote the parent of a 2012 grad and asked her advice. Based upon the responses we’ve received, we’ll keep shopping around.
I’m fairly certain the laptop and the bedside buddy weren’t included in the estimated Cost of Attendance.
- National College Decision Day: Pete’s going to college. (drstrangecollege.wordpress.com)
- You’d Never Want To Graduate From this Amazing, Automated College Dorm Room [Video] (gizmodo.com)
- 3 Safety Essentials for College (dormsafety.wordpress.com)