What to Bring

Keenan Hall’s Guide of What to Bring

Incoming freshmen, you are about to embark on a journeya journey that is wonderful and totally awesome, yet one that can be intimidating to those unfamiliar with it. We’ve made this guide in the hopes that the beginning of this journey goes as smoothly as possible for you. Trust me, the last thing you want is to get here and realize you’ve forgotten such necessities as bed sheets, good shower supplies, or a bangin’ stereo system.

First of All, a Few General Tips

Don’t wait until the last minute. It’s never too early to start shopping for any of the necessities listed below. Also, the earlier you start, the less stress you’ll have when moving into Keenan. Making a list and checking it off is a great way to get started.

You don’t need to get everything before coming down here. There are a number of stores in the South Bend/Mishawaka area that sell most of the necessities.

There might also be some store chains that allow you to place an order in your hometown, and then pick it up in South Bend. Look for these types of opportunities. One store that does this is Bed, Bath, & Beyond—if you have one in your hometown, try to make use of that service.

What You Start With

Beds: Keenan Hall has modular furniture; each resident has a modular unit consisting of a bed lofted above a wardrobe/closet and a desk. The beds are extra-long twins so take care when purchasing sheets. Having two sets of sheets if helpful when doing laundry.

Closet: In most rooms there are built-in closets (side-by-side, 1 for each resident). Below the hanging space there are two dresser drawers just above ground level.

Desks: Each of resident has a desk as part of the modular unit and a chair. Some residents purchase a nicer chair but most utilize the chair provided.

Desk Light: All desks have a built in light! You do not need to purchase a desk light!

Trash can: All rooms have a trash can and recycle bin.

Recommended But Not Required

Rug: The bare tile floors in Keenan can get old pretty fast. Residents can purchase a rug at ND during frosh-o at Stepan Center or off-campus.

Couch/Futon: A couch or futon can fit in the standard Keenan room in addition to the two modular units. This is highly recommended because you probably will have visitors who want a place to sit, and you may even have people who want to sleep over. This is the best way to accommodate them, hands down.

Television: All Notre Dame dorms have basic cable through Comcast, and there are options for more. You and your roommate might be watching a lot of TV, especially such popular channels as ESPN.

DVD Player and/or Game System. Movies: Rudy is a necessity for any Notre Dame student. Another popular movie (at least in Keenan) is Braveheart. Video Games: From Mario Kart to Call of Duty, some games become a way of life. All in all, a good way to relax after finishing off studying/classes

Stereo: Great for setting a mood for the room, or just to listen to music. Also great for attracting attention from girls wandering the halls.

Printer: OIT maintains a B/W printer in the lobby between Keenan and Stanford, and can be linked up to your computer after a quick visit to the website. Nevertheless, a cheap printer can be very useful.

What You NEED to Bring

Extension Cords/Surge Protectors: Bring at least one of each, and bring an extra extension cord if you want to plug in phone, alarm clock, etc at bed level.

Computer: Desktop or laptop. Both work. Use whatever fits your style and needs. Check out OIT’s recommendations for more information.

Connection Cables: Be sure to get cables to connect your TV, computer, and/or stereo so you can really rock out the tunes and have good sound.

Refrigerator: The 3.7 cubic foot fridges are the most common. It may be easiest to get a fridge once you arrive at ND. They are sold at Stepan Center during frosh-o

Cell Phone: Cell phones are a must, especially for calling people while on the go. Verizon and AT&T have recently upgraded their service on campus, so they work really well even within the building. T-Mobile also gets 4G/LTE signal and its WiFi calling feature works great in any building.

Alarm Clock: This needs to be ridiculously loud. If the alarm clock doesn’t wake you, your angry roommate might.

Laundry Necessities (Liquid detergent, dryer sheets, fabric softener, if you’re sensitive). Quarters for the machines are nice to have just in case, but most students use their ID card (Domer Dollars). The prices are reduced for using Domer Dollars.

Window Fan: Ward off the heat with good circulation. Get a big fan and prop it on the windowsill. Oscillating, standing fans may also be worth your while. It gets pretty hot late August/early September!

Dry-Erase Board Markers: After renovations, every room in Keenan has a whiteboard outside of it. Great for when you need to leave a message for your roommate or just to allow friends to write nonsense.

School supplies – Notebooks, Pens, Paper

Tape: All kinds come in handy. Bring at least one roll of each (Scotch, Duct, Masking).

Stapler: They don’t have them in the print stations. You’ll want a good one.

Raincoat and Umbrella: Rain does visit South Bend on occasion. Nothing beats going to class and not feeling waterlogged on those days.

Dress Shirt(s) and Tie(s): There will be a few dances throughout the year that are semi-formal and require shirt and tie. There’s nothing like having a good number of each of these, and maybe a blazer or sport coat. But it’s by no means necessary. It can be good to know that you have a lot of choices, though. And there’s never anything wrong with being versatile in your good(?) looks.

Dance Attire: There are lots of funny tropical and costume parties throughout the year, so a cool superhero outfit or luau shirt is always cool. Keenan’s first big dance is the Disco Roll, so if you have a tight disco outfit, bring it along. Otherwise, there will be runs to Salvation Army in the first couple of weeks.

Bathing Suit (and goggles if needed): There is a swim test.

Clothes Hangers

Cleaning Spray


Cool Posters

Silverware, bowl, plate

Your favorite stuffed animal: A popular one is Winnie the Pooh. No joke.

Shower Sandals: Cheap flip-flops will work (Walmart $5), and they will be a necessity when taking showers. Incidentally, showers are also a necessity.

Shower Caddy: A small bucket with holes in the bottom for you to carry your shower stuff to and from the bathroom. Very convenient but can be done without. Shampoo. Body Gel. Bar of soap – buy a plastic soap bar container for storage.

Towels: Large, and bring an extra. Also bring a hand towel and a washrag for your face.

Mattress Topper/Egg Crates: A good night’s sleep is important.

Mattress Pad/Cover: Put this on top of the mattress topper.

Bed Sheets: Extra Long Twins. Two sets is ideal.

Drugs: Aspirin, Tylenol, Advil, Nyquil, Pepto-Bismol, Tums, and Vicks are all good to have on hand when you’re feeling down and don’t want to run to the Huddle or St. Liam’s.

Q-tips, Band-aids

Decongestants, Cough Drops: It’s always good to have a stash of these when you’re sick.

Towel/Coat Rack: Holds your towels, jackets, etc. and hangs over the top of your door. Get one with lots of prongs/hooks.

Stamps/Letters: Better than going to the post office to write letters to people.

Tools: A hammer, a range of screwdrivers, and a good Swiss Army knife are always good to have for building or opening things.

Laundry Basket or Bag

Sleeping Bag: Good for friends or siblings crashing if you lack a futon. Better than the floor, at any rate. Also is excellent for camping out for basketball games.

Storage Organizers: Standing storage shelves are great for sticking in the built-in closets.

Final Thoughts

Before you go out and buy up this whole list, think of what you’ll actually use. For example, you might get the laundry service, so you won’t need your own laundry stuff.

When you get your room and roommate assignments, call your roommate up. It’s never too early to get to know the guy with whom you’ll be spending far more of your life than you ever wanted to. Also, you can then try to split up some of the big things, for example you could get a TV and he could pay for the carpet or whatnot. It’s always nice when you don’t have two of everything. And while you’re at it, you might as well figure out each other’s interests so you can figure out how best to make fun of each other in the coming year.

We hope that this guide is clear enough and comprehensive enough that it will answer all your questions, but if it doesn’t, please feel free to contact either of the Frosh-O Commissioners or Hall Staff. We are here to help you in any way possible, and we will only be too happy to answer any questions you may have.