ABOVE: Ivan Canales, undeclared sophomore, and Victoria Lybarger, junior digital arts major, show off their backpack style. (Madison Stumbough/Staff photographer)
By Madison Stumbough
Take a walk around campus and you will see all kinds of backpacks, some with interesting designs, others decked out with fun keychains. From the outside, these just seem like normal backpacks, but take a look inside and there may be some surprises.
“When I unpacked my bag, I was surprised to find this spoon.” Faith Ferguson, sophomore elementary education, said. “I’m not really sure what I used it for, or what I ate with it, but I think it’s probably time to clean out my backpack.”
While things can accumulate in backpacks over time, there are also things that are used every day.
“I carry a water bottle and chapstick with me every day.” Ferguson states. “They are definitely my two most used items and my two favorite items. I just got this new water cup and I love it!”
Along with more universal things, there are also some everyday backpack items that are more major specific. “As an education major, we use colored pencils every day in almost every class,” explained Lori Gragert, senior early childhood education.
“Last year I had a class that didn’t dismiss until 9 pm, and it was obviously dark by the time I got outside,” Gragert said. “Campus isn’t very well lit at night, so I started carrying around a flashlight. It has really come in handy since then and I will continue carrying it with me everywhere.”
“I call Ivan ‘boy scout,’ because he has literally everything you’ll ever need in his bag.” Victoria Lybarger, junior digital arts, exclaimed as she watched Ivan unpack his bag.
“I just like to be prepared,” Ivan Canales, undeclared sophomore, replied. “You never know what’s going to happen and what you’re going to need, so I carry it all on my back.”
Canales carries several electronic gadgets with him, but his most used item is an adapter that allows him to both listen to music and charge his phone at the same time.
“My planner is definitely what keeps me sane,” Lybarger explained. “I use it every day and it really allows me to keep track of my life.”
When unpacking her bag, Lybarger got excited when she came across her hacky sack. She says it’s a great game to relieve stress for a minute or two in the midst of a long day on campus.
College students carry around their lifeline on their backs each day, with a mix of both useful and strange items. The items needed to make it through the day for each person are wildly different along with each persons backpack style.
Madison Stumbough is a junior majoring in liberal arts and sciences. You may email her at firstname.lastname@example.org