A Spring Cleaning Guide for College Students

Billy Ferguson/Fourth Estate

With spring having just sprung and just five weeks left in the semester, it can feel great to clean out your dorm room or other living space


Clean under your bed

This is a big one right out the gate, we know. But the amount of garbage you will be able to get rid of makes it worth it, as well as the forgotten treasures you might find. It can be helpful to pull everything out from underneath the bed and then categorize it, whether it is garbage, trinkets, technology, dirty clothes, etc.  

Clean out your desk

Equally daunting as the dreaded “under the bed” region, your desk might be home to months’ worth of class notes, makeup and toiletries, snacks and utensils or some monstrous combination of the three. Again, you can break down the task by categorizing school-related items or everyday toiletries, and then put each category in a different drawer of your desk.

Organize class notes

This can mean different things for different people. Perhaps you type all of your notes, or maybe you write them by hand.  Either way, if they are not organized, it can really jeopardize your academic success. Spring cleaning would be a great time to organize your notes by class in a virtual or physical folder.  

Sell old textbooks

Doing this frees up precious space in your dorm, plus you will have a little extra money in your pocket. You might find yourself having dinner in the Johnson Center instead of the dining hall tonight! You can sell your old textbooks on websites like Chegg, or at Mason’s bookstore for 50 percent cash back.

Send unused clothes back home

Your sweaters and 10 different sweatshirts that depend on your mood can officially retire for the season. Get a box and ship them home to your loving parents, or take a weekend trip back home, if possible, so you can regain some of your already limited space.

Billy Ferguson/Fourth Estate

Dust and disinfect all surfaces

Spring allergies are bad enough. The last thing you need is particles in the air when you are at home. Your windowsill, your desk and any other surface should be wiped clean.

Wipe down windows and mirrors

Fingerprints and other things muck up the glass in your room, but with a quick wipe from some Windex or other cleaning solution, they will be moving-day-clear once again!

Wash your sheets

OK, we know we’re supposed to do this weekly, but college gets stressful and who has the time? Take this opportunity to throw both your sheets and pillow cases in the wash. While you are at it, consider laundering other things you normally don’t, like your comforter or other blankets.

Disinfect technology

Your phone and laptop carry more bacteria and general grossness than so many other surfaces in your room. Use Lysol or another disinfectant for both the screen and the keyboard. For dirty keys, you can also use a cotton swab.

Rent a vacuum from your neighborhood desk

No matter what neighborhood you live in on campus, you can rent a vacuum and really go over all of your carpeting. A good alternative is a handheld Dustbuster from Walmart.