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The GW Hatchet


The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Crime log: Subject barred after shoplifting at bookstore
By Max Porter, Contributing News Editor • February 26, 2024

Arrive to GW in style with these backpack staples for the school year

Lily Speredelozzi I Photographer
Be sure to pack your headphones, a water bottle and some snacks in your backpack as you jump into new classes this semester.

The key to starting the school year off right is being prepared, and the items in your backpack can make all the difference.

Whether you are opting to use a classic backpack or a trendy tote bag, filling it with a balance of items for class and for fun can be a struggle. Here are the academic, personal, leisure and style items that you need to include in your backpack.

Laptop or tablet
The best place to start is with academic necessities, and in the modern age that means going digital. Whether you are heading to a lecture, a lab or something in between, a computer and iPad are considered the most popular option for note-taking in the classroom. Although you can’t go wrong with the classic pen or pencil and notepad, electronic notes make organization so much easier. Take notes on Google Slides from your iPad so your notes can go right into your Google Drive. Make sure to keep a charger in your backpack so you’re not empty-handed with a drained battery.

Fend off the humidity of August and September in D.C. with fully stocked personal hygiene items in your bag. It’s a good idea to keep some deodorant or perfume in your backpack to stay fresh as you race between classes. Take a look at these summer fragrances if you’re in the market for some new perfume. You can never go wrong with some chapstick, and add some mints or gum to your pouch to keep your breath smelling clean. A bottle of sunscreen can also save you from the sun if you decide to spontaneously lay out in Kogan between classes.

Headphones and books
Save space in your backpack for some items to keep yourself entertained in between classes. Strut through campus with some headphones or earbuds blasting your favorite music to pump you up for your first week. Chunky headphones have been trendy recently, especially for music on walks or at the gym. Pack a book in your bag to pull out if you happen to arrive at class a few minutes early. A book for some light reading offers a break from your textbook, and there are plenty of spots in Kogan Plaza or University Yard to curl up and read.

Water bottle and snacks
Hydrate or die-drate. Those are words to live by at all times on campus, especially when classes start in the D.C. summer heat. From hot pinks to bright yellows, Hydro Flasks and their eye-catching colors are arguably the most iconic backpack staple on GW’s campus. Nalgene and Brita products also make for viable options to strap to the side of your pack. All these options fit perfectly under the spouts of the water-refilling stations that are located across campus as part of GW’s campaign to eliminate single-use plastics on campus. To supplement your diligent hydration, throw some snacks in your bag to munch on in between classes. Trail mix, granola bars, pretzels or apple slices are all easy picks.

Fashion accessories
Looking for accessories to complete your look on the go? A cap emblazoned with the GW or Washington Nationals logo is all you need to represent the campus and local community. A pair of sunglasses make for another portable addition to your look and block out the afternoon sun glare – take a look at this list for some of the best picks to fit your personal aesthetic. Though temperatures are high at the start of the year, classrooms can feel frigid with the air conditioning on full blast, so throw a light sweater or jacket into your backpack to combat the varying microclimates you’ll encounter across campus.

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