Packing a bag for Academic Semester

calebaudia

Member
Joined
Jul 10, 2021
Messages
25
Good evening!

I hope you all are doing well. I'm still out and about getting vaccinations and medical things taken care of, and I've nearly gotten everything together for BCT packing, however, I was wondering if anyone has started packing for the academic year as well?

I know some cadets who went to USAFA in the past will pack their academic bag before they leave to limit some stress after basic (and to eliminate the possibility of parents leaving things behind which I will definitely prefer). If you all are advising this decision, what else should I pack besides standard pencils, pens, notebooks, folder, and my iPad?

I do understand that cadets are given multiple opportunities to go school shopping – I'd just like to get as much done as possible LOL and have my parents drop it off on parents weekend. Thanks for any help and suggestions!
 

Momto5

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Joined
Mar 8, 2022
Messages
83
Parents weekend is about 3 weeks after classes begin, correct? If your parents aren't coming for ADay, I believe you will need to purchase at least a starter set of those supplies you mentioned.

I'm curious to see what other suggestions are given as well.
 

hopefulmom182

5-Year Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2017
Messages
315
Yeah-- you can't wait until PW for your school supplies-- If your parents can't make it out for A-day, perhaps they can mail a package to be delivered about the first week of August. Now, the mailroom gets super busy at that time, so if they can mail it to a sponsor family that would be SOOO much more efficient. Anyway, other things desired? A sleeping mat/pad and blanket for sleeping on top of your made bed is popular. Some cadets like a computer monitor. My DS wanted a projector for watching tv that he ordered off of Amazon.
 

calebaudia

Member
Joined
Jul 10, 2021
Messages
25
Parents weekend is about 3 weeks after classes begin, correct? If your parents aren't coming for ADay, I believe you will need to purchase at least a starter set of those supplies you mentioned.

I'm curious to see what other suggestions are given as well.
Whoops! I meant A-day. That's what I get for multitasking haha! Thanks for pointing that out.
 
Joined
Feb 24, 2021
Messages
46
Good evening!

I hope you all are doing well. I'm still out and about getting vaccinations and medical things taken care of, and I've nearly gotten everything together for BCT packing, however, I was wondering if anyone has started packing for the academic year as well?

I know some cadets who went to USAFA in the past will pack their academic bag before they leave to limit some stress after basic (and to eliminate the possibility of parents leaving things behind which I will definitely prefer). If you all are advising this decision, what else should I pack besides standard pencils, pens, notebooks, folder, and my iPad?

I do understand that cadets are given multiple opportunities to go school shopping – I'd just like to get as much done as possible LOL and have my parents drop it off on parents weekend. Thanks for any help and suggestions!
Keep in mind that you will get a lot of supplies issued to you! If you have specific things you prefer than make sure you have that. Other than that I think you should be set!
 

shiner

USAFA Grad, Faculty 3yrs, ALO 7yrs
10-Year Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2010
Messages
1,157
Amazon will be your friend. The C-store carries stuff, but that only goes so far when 4000 students want to use it for the first day of school. Outside of transition week, the C-store will work for most of your needs.
 

mommahedg

USAFA Class of '21 Parent
5-Year Member
Joined
Mar 10, 2017
Messages
132
A basic medicine kit for your dorm room is a good idea - not necessary to pack ahead of time but if your parents are attending A-Day, they can certainly hit the local Walmart etc to pick up some things for you. Examples : band-aids, pain reliever (both Advil and Tylenol since they can be taken for different reasons), Tums for those late night stomach aches, cough drops, preferred cold medicine etc. Put it all in a small plastic container with a lid and you're set.
 

T-37IP

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Joined
Nov 3, 2020
Messages
431
You'll be able to send them a basket of cleaning supplies. There are booths set up at I-day to order various baskets for the cadets when they finish BCT. They'll also want/need to make a Target run during parent's weekend. I know people wonder about dorm refrigerators. Generally no, BUT ICs and others, with permission, are allowed. My DS found one in the basement of Vandy. He used his Drum and Bugle corps time commitment as his "reason" to need one for "proper nutrition". He has fantastic sponsors, so we/he Amazon things to their house and they drop them off to him.
 

calebaudia

Member
Joined
Jul 10, 2021
Messages
25
A basic medicine kit for your dorm room is a good idea - not necessary to pack ahead of time but if your parents are attending A-Day, they can certainly hit the local Walmart etc to pick up some things for you. Examples : band-aids, pain reliever (both Advil and Tylenol since they can be taken for different reasons), Tums for those late night stomach aches, cough drops, preferred cold medicine etc. Put it all in a small plastic container with a lid and you're set.
What a great idea! Did not even think of that. I'm definitely adding this to my list. Thanks!
 

TLR2025

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Joined
Dec 23, 2020
Messages
102
What a great idea! Did not even think of that. I'm definitely adding this to my list. Thanks!
My DS also packed sunblock even though his list said it would be supplied. And sunscreen for his lips- may sound funny but we live in FL so the altitude and dry weather was a big change! Hopefully you requested a sponsor family if you aren't from there or have family members there. As someone already said- ship Amazon to the sponsor family. My DS hasn't been back to his PO Box in the mailroom since BCT. Pack STAMPS! You will need stamps to put on your "daily" letters home ;) I also wrote out a few pre-addressed stamped envelopes that I sent with my DS. A few to his friends, his grandparents, but most made out to me (and his dad). Lol
 

CadetMom2026

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Joined
Apr 14, 2022
Messages
33
I have a few questions about A day. First of all, do the students get their phones back a couple of days before this so that we can communicate to find out any last minute items they need? Also do you leave stuff in your car and the cadets are able to go out and get it with you? Or do you actually bring it to the parade? And I'm guessing since they've limited space I shouldn't put things in a giant suitcase? Should I just carry things in something like a Target bag?
I read that there will be food trucks but is it also possible to bring a picnic if they want some specific foods? And same question - do we bring that with us or leave it in the car?
I know these are oddly specific but I'm thinking about it and trying to figure out logistics.
Thanks in advance for any help!
 

CadetMom2026

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Joined
Apr 14, 2022
Messages
33
You can absolutely bring a picnic. They will have their phones back prior to parade, and you can leave stuff in your car and get it at the end- I would pack stuff in something easy to carry, but also disposable since they have space limitations for storing a suitcase.
Perfect, thank you so much!
 

T-37IP

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2020
Messages
431
I have a few questions about A day. First of all, do the students get their phones back a couple of days before this so that we can communicate to find out any last minute items they need? Also do you leave stuff in your car and the cadets are able to go out and get it with you? Or do you actually bring it to the parade? And I'm guessing since they've limited space I shouldn't put things in a giant suitcase? Should I just carry things in something like a Target bag?
I read that there will be food trucks but is it also possible to bring a picnic if they want some specific foods? And same question - do we bring that with us or leave it in the car?
I know these are oddly specific but I'm thinking about it and trying to figure out logistics.
Thanks in advance for any help!
They get them back after BCT, BUT don't expect long phone calls, they are still very busy on the runup to I day. Not the mention, the first phone call will go to GF/BF:)
 

mommahedg

USAFA Class of '21 Parent
5-Year Member
Joined
Mar 10, 2017
Messages
132
If your cadet has requested a computer monitor, printer, mattress topper or other large item, consider ordering online with the "pick up at store" option. Most big stores have a location in Colorado Springs. This comes in handy, especially if you are flying in, or driving in and don't have a lot of space to bring things. This also works best if you are arriving the afternoon/evening before A-Day since trying to pick something up the morning of will be too hectic.
 

TigerMomNot

Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2020
Messages
63
I have a few questions about A day. First of all, do the students get their phones back a couple of days before this so that we can communicate to find out any last minute items they need? Also do you leave stuff in your car and the cadets are able to go out and get it with you? Or do you actually bring it to the parade? And I'm guessing since they've limited space I shouldn't put things in a giant suitcase? Should I just carry things in something like a Target bag?
I read that there will be food trucks but is it also possible to bring a picnic if they want some specific foods? And same question - do we bring that with us or leave it in the car?
I know these are oddly specific but I'm thinking about it and trying to figure out logistics.
Thanks in advance for any help!
There is very little time you are able to spend together, and you have to get their stuff to their room within that small window of time. Chick Fil A opened early on A-day and we brought that with us and ate in the car. We put items in a rolling suitcase and Ikea carry bags, which my husband and cadet took to her room. Many things are squadron dependent. For example, the doolies in her squadron could not use the elevator - something to consider if your cadet is on the 6th floor and you have a lot of stuff. Also, she was not allowed a mattress pad - thank goodness her C3C coach held onto it for her. I would hold off on stuff that is prohibited (it's all in the cadet handbook) until you know for sure that the squadron will allow it. You should pretty much know by PW.

We took the suitcase back with us - she had no room for that. She kept some of the Ikea bags, which she uses when they do a rapid room shuffle.

Her favorite item at A-Day = a Brita water pitcher.
 

Stealth_81

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Jul 20, 2006
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We stayed at The Academy Hotel the night before A-Day. I talked to the kitchen staff there and they prepared a great picnic lunch for us and had it ready at 0600 A-Day morning. (We got plenty of extra food since we anticipated some extra cadets that didn’t have family attending.) We took it in a cooler small enough for one person to carry. We didn’t go to the dorm after the parade like most and we didn’t have to wait in any lines for food. We found some seats in the field house stands and just enjoyed chatting for a couple hours with our cadet and their friends who joined us. Seeing them relax and laugh after BCT was priceless.

Stealth_81
 

TigerMomNot

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Joined
Oct 7, 2020
Messages
63
Oh one more thing. Since DD was so concerned about the amount of time that she would have to put everything away, we took those square canvas storage bins that they put on their shelves (they are heavy, order for pickup somewhere local). They fold out quickly, and we made sure that everything that we brought could be thrown into those bins.
 

Peter2025

USAFA C/O 2025
Joined
Mar 2, 2021
Messages
461
For example, the doolies in her squadron could not use the elevator - something to consider if your cadet is on the 6th floor and you have a lot of stuff.
From the CS&D
2.8.2.1.4. Elevators. C4Cs will not use elevators under normal circumstances. C4Cs may use elevators when medically required, when moving objects that require an elevator with permission of an upper-class cadet, or for removing bulk items of trash.

I'd be surprised if your DD would have been prohibited from using the elevators if she asked. That being said, I'm sure some squadrons do stuff like that.
she was not allowed a mattress pad
While Doolies are technically not allowed to have non-issued bedding, if you hypothetically put a mattress pad in your trunk every morning, I don't believe they can check there. Hypothetically, of course :zip:
 
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