College students notoriously struggle on multiple fronts, most definitely to include their grocery and entertainment options…or even just scoring a quiet, private place to be productive. Often they’re relegated to whatever facilities their school offers. Vending machines, fuzzy TVs with limited channels, and noisy dorm rooms and crowded study halls can leave much to be desired. Here are a few items to ease and appease college students as they study, live, work and play away from the cushy conveniences of home.
Stebco TravelDesk 18-inch Upright Rolling Suitcase with Retractable Mobile Work Station (www.Overstock.com) - $250.00
Now collegiate students can work in comfort from anywhere, whether out and about on campus, hanging out in the coffee shop or dorm lounge, or waiting to catch a flight or train. The incredibly sturdy Stebco TravelDesk workstation from Overstock.com is a spacious case that’s ideal for the student seeking to stay organized and productive while on-the-go during their school day and during those trips back home. The Stebco TravelDesk 18-inch Upright Rolling Suitcase, which features durable 100% - 1680D polyester construction and a streamline flex carry handle, boasts a quick-access, retractable and adjustable mobile work desk that fits laptops up to 18 inches wide. This allows students to work from anywhere at any time. It also has a dedicated padded tablet pouch, and important papers can easily be found with the dual front panel zippered pockets with the deluxe business organizer. This well-designed case includes two smooth gliding wheels and stabilizing feet, for a sturdy and agile mobile desk experience.
Jabra’s ‘Halo Smart’ Multi-Purpose Wireless Headphones (www.Jabra.com) - $79.99
The Jabra ‘Halo Smart’ wireless headphones were created in response to consumer demand for a multi-purpose headset specifically designed to support the many scenarios of a busy lifestyle. It’s perfect for on-the-go students, teachers, business professionals and other consumers who want to seamlessly manage calls, music and media using one device, but require optimal voice and call-quality above all else. With a high-quality microphone, 10 millimeter speakers and extended battery life (providing up to 17 hours of talk time and up to 15 hours of music listening time), the Halo Smart provides a best-in-class call experience as well as a superior wireless music experience. Jabra Halo Smart allows users to accept a call by separating the two earbuds as they rest around the neck. One earbud can be used for phone calls, while both are beneficial for listening to music. The high-quality microphone includes integrated wind/noise protection for enhanced in-call quality. The device also features a dedicated Google Now / Siri button, and Android users can expect readouts of calendar notifications, emails, text messages and social media messages. Also well designed, this handsome headset is so comfortable you’ll forget it’s even there!
Slingbox M2 (www.Slingbox.com) - $149.99
Even students living away in a dorm or in their own apartment can still enjoy the comforts of home—entertainment-wise, at least. Thanks to the Slingbox M2, students living away from home can still have uncompromised access to both live and recorded home TV content from anywhere in the world and on any personal device: computers, tablets and smartphones. Plus, this is without any monthly fees! With the Slingbox M2, no matter where they are, college students can keep up with their favorite hometown sports and TV shows live or on-demand by tapping into their parent’s at-home cable subscriptions. The Slingbox M2 is compatible with Apple TV, Chromecast, FireTV and Roku, so college students can even watch their at-home content right from their dorm room or apartment TVs. Only Slingbox lets anyone take their entertainment anywhere in the world without the expense of additional monthly fees. The Slingbox M2 is available at leading retailers including Best Buy and Amazon.
Mohu Amplified Indoor HDTV Antenna (www.GoMohu.com) - $69.99
Speaking of television, for those who love to watch TV but hate when the cable gets fuzzy, or the sound gets distorted, here’s an easy fix for you: the Mohu Antenna. This is a paper-thin television antenna that provides users with unlimited access to over-the-air (OTA) broadcast TV like NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX and so much more for a one-time fee. There are three different designs of the Mohu Antenna: the Mohu Leaf, Mohu Curve and Mohu Leaf Metro. The Leaf 50 is the most popular, offering a 30-50 mile radius with an economical design which makes it virtually unnoticeable while watching TV. The Curve can also broadcast up to 50 miles away, but it has an arched design and can also deliver full 1080 HDTV quality. The Leaf Metro has a 25 mile radius and is more compact than the Leaf, however it too is eco-friendly. This is a viable solution to ensure your TV reception—whether in the dorm or elsewhere—remains its best.
Kanex iPhone Dock (www.Kanex.com) - $39.95
For those students who use iPhones, iPads and iPods and prefer a hands-free experience while on a FaceTime or Skype call or while watching videos, this is a great solution. The Kanex iPhone Dock is an aptly angled stand that provides Apple users with a hands free way to enjoy video chats with professors, friends and family or to watch videos—both instructional and entertainment. With Kanex you can prop your device right onto the dock, which features silicone back support along with a 3.3 foot USB cable, and chat the day away since the dock is also a charger. It has a slip resistant base and a sturdy Lightning connector to help your device stay put. It can even detach into two separate pieces for easier storage during travel.
Kuhfs Fashion Accessories (www.Kuhfs.com) - $29.00
College kids, high schoolers and certainly professors, teachers and school admins can effortlessly elevate the look of their boots, jeans, capris and leggings with a smart invention called Kuhfs. This product was launched in 2014 by Amy Olson, a mother of two, out of her home in Chicago. Having searched the Internet and every retail shop for a unique product that would add style to her boots and complement her outfits, Amy decided to create a cuff that would seamlessly wrap around the top of her boots to spice up her look with ease with a simple yet fashionable approach. This fashion fix is absolutely perfect for back to school as they allow teachers and students to wear their same favorite boots, capris and other fashions with a fresh, different look each time. Now that’s smart!
Rockport Men's Leather Shoes: (www.Rockport.com) - $110 - $140
Guys who want to step out in style this school season should definitely check out the The Total Motion Fusion Wingtip shoes from Rockport, which offer a modern take on a classic look. The lace-up front ensures an optimal custom fit, while the streamlined, orthotic foam footbed keeps your feet cool and comfortable, also providing for full foot contact and support. Dewix anti-microbial linings also help reduce foot odor and wick moisture to help keep the foot dry. The outsole is made from a lightweight injection EVA, providing lightweight shock absorption to help reduce foot fatigue. This outsole also offers strength and durability without weighing you down. Made of full-grain leather, these shoes are easy to clean and maintain to help extend product life. For a more casual vibe, the Path to Greatness collection slip ons are great to grab and go! Guaranteed to keep you on your feet, these full grain leather shoes are ideal for walking around campus or hitting the town with friends. The rubber outsole provides a durable grip on a variety of surfaces, while the EVA footbed with memory foam provides immediate cushioning that conforms to the shape of the foot for a more personalized fit. Rockport will definitely keep a spring in your step as you jaunt around campus.
Snack Food & Beverage - $3.69 - $47.00
Snacks are certainly an essential food group during college life and here are a few tasty options. To satisfy those midnight cravings when pulling a studying all-nighter, try GOOD THiNS. They start with real ingredients like wheat, potato, and rice, and are paired with delicious flavors like spinach and garlic. Baked thin and crispy without any artificial flavors, colors, cholesterol, partially hydrogenated oils or high fructose corn syrup, it’s a snack you can feel good about. Pure Protein Crunch is another snack students don’t have to feel guilty about. It’s a bite-sized protein snack formulated with 10 grams of soy protein per serving, only 5 grams of sugar and 160 calories or less. There are two delicious flavors: Double Chocolate and Peanut Butter. A delicious addition to your active lifestyle, Pure Protein is packed with quality protein, which is an essential nutrient for optimal body function, strength and lean mass.
Craving a cup of coffee with your snack? Look no further than Carta Coffee. The company’s Side-By-Side Tasting Sampler is a two-bag sampler, highlighting a side-by-side offering of beans processed in two different ways. The first sampler showcases two different drying techniques, Natural and Traditional, each impacting the coffee’s flavor and body. It’s a reflection of Founder Scott Burr's winemaking past. Latitude Natural Process is produced using full-cherry drying, one of the oldest methods of coffee production. Coffee cherries are picked and then directly dried under the sun or on raised screens as full cherries. This style produces sweet, smooth, and nutty complex flavors. Latitude Traditional Process is processed in the “wet” method, which is the mechanical extraction of the bean from the cherry and washing to remove any impurities or remnants. This method produces clean, bright, citrus flavors. It’s a fun and exciting way to explore and learn more about coffee.
Of course staying hydrated is super important to keep the mind sharp, but buying those disposable water bottles time and time again can tax a college student’s budget…and add yet more waste to the ever-growing landfills. So, check out Retap—a bottle made of shatter-resistant borosilicate glass; the same glass used in labs for test tubes, beakers and graduated cylinders. So, no worries about broken shards of glass in the dorm! Retap water bottles also don’t absorb flavors and the ridges typically found on water bottles aren’t present, leaving the spout free of bacteria.
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***Some or all of the accommodations(s), experience(s), item(s) and/or service(s) detailed above were provided and/or sponsored to accommodate this review, but all opinions expressed are entirely those of Merilee Kern and have not been influenced in any way.***