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Long day at work or school? 13 must-have items, according to a grad student

I never leave home without these must-haves for work or school.
I never leave home without these must-haves for work or school.

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As a newly minted business graduate student, I've had to adjust to my daily routine now that class is back in session — especially since I was a little nervous to be heading to school after spending the last two years at home.

My new routine consists of a lot of time on campus, with longer classes and a hectic schedule. After the first couple of weeks, I found myself drawn to a handful of items that are coming in handy to simplify my day to day as a student on the go.

Since we're all looking to make out lives a little easier, I've gathered 13 of my tried-and-true items that are a must-have for any busy graduate student (or busy professional!) this fall.

Apple Macbook Air

Apple Macbook Air 13.3-inch laptop
Apple Macbook Air 13.3-inch. Image via Walmart.

I'm a long time Apple user and I love my Macbook. Whether I need to send messages or easily share documents, it's quick and smooth to do between my iPhone and Mac. Since laptops can be expensive, be sure to also check out certified refurbished options for a more affordable choice.

$587 at Walmart

Bentoheaven Premium Bento Lunch Box

Premium Bento Lunch Box in black and purple
Premium Bento Lunch Box. Image via Amazon.

I prefer taking home made food over buying lunches, so I make sure to pack enough for the whole day because I'm often on campus for 10 to 12 hours. I love this Bento lunch box because it's compact, yet still has space for my meals. It's also leakproof, comes with a utensil set and is microwave safe.

$36 $45 at Amazon

Bliss Collections Daily Planner Tear Off Pad

Bliss Collections Daily Planner Tear Off Pad productivity tracker pages
Bliss Collections Daily Planner Tear Off Pad. Image via Amazon.

I'm big on daily to-do lists, so if you're like me you have to try this tear-off daily planner pad. It's segmented, making it even easier in keep on track of priority items.

$18 $23 at Amazon

Custom Business Cards

Staples Custom Business Cards personalized business cards
Staples Custom Business Cards. Image via Staples powered by Canva.

Given the number of networking events I attend, I decided to order a set of customized business cards to showcase my personal brand. With this set from Staples, you can choose from hundreds of templates, different card stocks and even schedule same day pick up.

From $19 at Staples

Shady Grove Black and White Marble Notebook

Notebook: Classic Black and White Marble with Gold Lettering cover
Notebook: Classic Black and White Marble with Gold Lettering. Image via Amazon.

I'm obsessed with the look and feel of this notebook: It's elegant, and a great size that easily fits in totes or backpacks. It's perfect for taking notes when you don't want to use your laptop, or if you want to journal or simply brainstorm.

$10 at Amazon

5pcs Gel Pens Quick Dry Ink Pens

5pcs Fine Point Premium Retractable Rolling Ball Gel Pens
5pcs Fine Point Premium Retractable Rolling Ball Gel Pens. Image via Amazon.

These beautiful pens write smoothly and are comfortable to use too. This is a set you'll want to keep with you on-the-go.

$22 at Amazon

Nefeeko Collapsible Water Bottle

Nefeeko Collapsible Water Bottle in black/silver
Nefeeko Collapsible Water Bottle. Image via Amazon.

A water bottle is another must-have item I carry with me no matter where I go. I really love this collapsible water bottle because you can literally shrink the size to easily fit in your bag when it's not full.

From $31 at Amazon

Lambert Large Helena Working Tote

Model holding the Helena - 2-In-1 Black Vegan Leather Handbag
Lambert Large Helena Working Tote

I've been a fan of Lambert since I started using their travel bag, so I had to give their handbags a try too. This one has space for my laptop, notebooks, and other daily essentials — and I'm obsessed.

$160 at Simons

Dr. Scholl's Tri-Comfort Insoles for Heel, Arch and Ball

Dr. Scholl’s Tri-Comfort Insoles. Comfort for Heel, Arch and Ball of Foot, with Targeted Cushioning and Arch Support
Dr. Scholl’s Tri-Comfort Insoles for Heel, Arch and Ball. Image via Amazon.

Long days on campus often means sore feet at the end of the day. These insoles are perfect to support your feet from the heel, arch, and ball. I like to wear them with both heels and flats because of the support they offer.

$20 at Amazon

Boscia Clear Complexion Blotting Linens

Boscia Clear Complexion Blotting Linens pack of 100 blotting papers
Boscia Clear Complexion Blotting Linens. Image via Amazon.

Since my skin gets oily throughout the day, I always keep a packet of blotting papers with me. They come in super handy for a quick freshen up during the day without ruining my makeup.

$14 at Amazon

Reitmans Solid Double-Breasted Long Blazer

Model wears Solid Double-Breasted Long Blazer in cream
Solid Double-Breasted Long Blazer. Image via Reitmans.

An important part of business school is networking, so keeping a blazer around is important in case I need to quickly throw it on for an important event. I love the colour and fit of this double-breasted style, as it goes with everything whether I want to dress up or down.

$75 $100 at Reitmans

Hydralyte Effervescent Electrolytes Tablets

Hydralyte Effervescent Electrolytes Tablets - Berry glass of water with electrolyte tablet
Hydralyte Effervescent Electrolytes Tablets - Berry 20 count. Image via Amazon.

If I'm fatigued or have no time to hydrate, I like using electrolyte tablets to reset my energy during the day. Just pop it into your water bottle and you're good to go.

$10 $12 at Amazon

Lifted Rubber Resistance Bands

Rubber Resistance Bands set of five
Rubber Resistance Bands. Image via Lifted.

When I'm looking to squeeze in a quick workout between classes, Lifted's resistance bands come in handy for exercising on the go. I can customize my workout intensity from the set of five bands and they come with a convenient carrying pouch for storage while I"m away from the gym.

$30 at Lifted

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