Must-Have Tech Items for College Students

College students today are the most digitally connected batch we’ve seen yet. As such, their technology requirements are unprecedented, and it’s easy to overlook some gadgets that can really make a world of difference in the quality of modern day college experience. Here are a few must-have tech items to help navigate the ins and outs of higher education this school year.

Portable Power Sources

Being overly reliant on technology such as your phone and laptop are essentially a fact of life these days – which makes it seem like a catastrophe when your battery goes dead by lunch time. With the fast pace of college life nowadays, no one has time to sit around by an outlet while their phone recharges. So invest in a portable recharging solution to free you from the limitations of your gadget’s battery lives.  The options out there range from simple small battery packs to backpacks outfitted with multiple USB outlets that keep all your devices running as long as you are.

External Memory

Your mom always warned against putting all your eggs in one basket, so why would you expose the only copy of your capstone project to the fickle whims of Murphy’s Law? Anything that can go wrong will go wrong – and usually at the worst possible time for you. So save yourself the stress of starting over from scratch after your study partner decides to share his coffee with your laptop keyboard and back up your work to an external hard drive. It’s also a good idea to take advantage of cloud storage services – there are many free options out there – as well to back up your backup, just in case.

Fitness Tech

The freshman 15 is just one of the many potential pitfalls of the unhealthy lifestyle of college students.  The mix of freedom and stressful deadlines can make it easy to neglect physical fitness in the pursuit of intellectual goals – leaving your health at risk. Fitness gadgets like the Fitbit can help you track and manage your physical conditioning as well as your eating and sleeping patterns. This will help ensure that your mind is the only thing about you that expands during your time on campus.

Large Computer Monitor

These days most modern college students will likely have a laptop instead of a desktop. The size, weight, power and cost of your portable computing options has improved so much in recent years that most students never give the decision a second thought. However, investing in a nice flat screen computer monitor – as well as an inexpensive desktop keyboard and mouse – is a great way to get the best of both worlds.

Whether you’re a remote student pursuing Portland State’s online criminal justice degree or a landscape architecture student at University of Michigan working on a new design, you’ll find that the larger display – as well as the option to set up a dual display with your laptop – can help out immensely. The visual and ergonomic benefits of this larger setup are much better than hunching over a small screen for hours on end. Additionally, new HD resolution options allow the monitor to double as an improvised TV for streaming shows and movies.