Ultimate Packing List for GRIP

Are you heading to GRIP (Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh) in two weeks? I’ll be there this year taking the Practical Genetic Genealogy course.

Last year I had a great time a GRIP in the Advanced Land Research: Locating, Analyzing, Mapping course. Not only did I learn about land research I also discovered what to bring and what not to bring to GRIP. Staying in the dorms was great. I was able to wake up just in time for breakfast, take a break before dinner and hang out with people in the evenings all within a short distance.

Warning: This list is meant for those who like to pack everything they own and are driving. If you are flying or like to pack minimally, this list is not for you.

The Ultimate Packing List for GRIP:

For the dorms:
(Remember these are dorm rooms and not hotel rooms. Although they are minimally furnished, you might want a few extra comforts.)

  • XL-Twin Sheets – The beds have sheets with possibly the lowest thread count available. The bottom sheet is not fitted and slides around the mattress. If you like your sheets to feel good and not move, bring your own (remember that the beds are dorm beds and are extra long).
  • Blanket – The bed has a blanket. Again it is minimal. If you get cold easily, pack an extra blanket (or a comforter if you are really cold).
  • Pillow – If your head has certain needs for you to sleep, bring your own pillow.
  • Towel – There are towels, but they are thin. Pack a good towel and use the supplied towel as a bath mat.
  • Soap/Shampoo – This is not a hotel. So pack what ever you need to take a shower and hand soap for the sink.
  • Tissues – There was toilet paper, but no tissues in the rooms last year. Although you might want to pack toilet paper with more than one ply if you like that sort of thing.
  • Light – Some of the rooms had desk lights, others didn’t. So pack a small clip-on light so that you don’t have to navigate the room in the dark before bed.
  • Power strip – This is a must for any trip. I think I have stayed in one hotel that had the required number of power outlets for all my stuff.
  • Ethernet cable/router – There is wired internet in the dorm rooms. If you have a tablet or ultra-thin laptop, you’ll want to make your own wireless internet. I brought an old router with me last year and it worked great. If don’t require wireless internet, make sure to bring an ethernet cable to hook yourself up. (The classrooms have wireless internet.)
  • Chargers – You don’t want your devices to die.
  • Clothes – Apparently genealogists on a college campus don’t think it’s appropriate to go to class in their PJs.
  • Sneakers – There is a walking group (or there would have been last year if it hadn’t stormed everyday) and you will want comfortable shoes to explore the campus after dinner.
  • Snacks/Drinks – There is a fridge and microwave in the rooms. So bring some extra goodies to sustain you.
  • Door stopper – If you want to be social, this will keep your door open.
  • Decorations – It is a dorm room. So maybe you want to display your style with a poster, stuffed animal, fancy pillow, or something else.

For class:

  • Laptop/tablet – I know that some people take notes with paper. I don’t understand those people. But I loved having my laptop with me last year and being able to explore websites as they were discussed.
  • Writing utensil – In case you have homework or a worksheet that you have to fill out.
  • Layers – The classroom I was in last year was hot. Another classroom was freezing. So bring layers until you figure out what temperature your room will be for the week.
  • Business cards to give your new friends

What did I forget? Add your packing tips in the comments.

12 thoughts on “Ultimate Packing List for GRIP

    1. Anne Saurbaugh

      I put a bit of dish soap on a paper towel – one for each day plus one extra – and put them in a zip lock sandwich bag. Doesn’t spill and less weight than a bottle of dish soap. You can just wet the paper towel, use it to wash your dishes, and throw it out when you are done.

      Reply
  1. Linda

    Usually a campus only sells one type of soda–Pepsi or Coke. Is that true of LaRoche? If so, which one?

    Reply

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