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2019 Storage Information

As students prepare for move-out, we've started to receive a number of questions about storage options for the summer semester.  Please read through the below FAQ and general information and let us know if you have questions.

How Can I store my items off-site?

Swarthmore College works with Ultimate College Storage, operated by the UPS Store.  After registering for their storage option, you will pickup free boxes or sustainable bins and tape from the Office of Student Engagement, and schedule a time for them to pickup your items outside of your dorm.  Bring you confirmation email to the Office of Student Engagement as proof of being permitted to collect boxes/bins/tape.  You will need schedule a time when you return to campus where they can deliver your items back to your new dorm.  Please visit the Ultimate College Storage website for more information and to signup.  

Two additional companies you may want to look into:

Extra Space Storage, located on Baltimore Pike in Springfield.  They do not provide pick-up but have been used by students for several years.

Does the College offer any on-campus storage solutions?

The College began phasing out dorm storage in the Spring of 2013, and announced a two-year calendar for all campus locations to close.  At the end of their freshman year, we announced to the Class of 2016 that we would be able to provide storage options through the beginning of their senior year.   We encourage students to begin making arrangements, which includes utilizing Ultimate College Storage, a storage service through the UPS store that picks up and stores your items over the summer (or Fall semester if you are studying abroad).  Please visit their website to signup or learn more information.

Limited storage (also called Secure Storage) will continue to be available for international students and low income students only.

How can I register for Secure Storage? 

  • Registration will open on Tuesday, April 23. 
  • The Registration Form is located on the Housing Portal via MySwarthmore under the Applications & Forms.  Please note that space is very limited so you should register as soon as you are ready. 
  • Priority registration will close on Monday, May 6.
  • After the priority registration deadline, all names will be verified by Jennifer Marks-Gold, Director of International Student Services and/or Karen Henry, Dean of the First-Year Class/Low-Income Initiatives.  Applicants will learn if they are approved for Secure Storage by Friday, May 10.  Students who are not approved will need to utilize Ultimate College Storage or alternative off-campus options, and/or taking items home if that is a possibility.

Students who apply after the priority deadline will only be considered should there be enough space, so apply on-time.

Secure Storage will only be open the week of Monday, May 13 - detailed dates and times are listed below.

General Secure Storage Rules:

  • Respect the box limit of three large items (boxes, suitcase, plastic tub) per person
  • Make sure your box closes and can be secured.  To fit as many boxes in the space as possible, we do have to stack boxes on top of each other.
  • Fill your box to capacity (remember: three box rule)
  • Make sure to pack strategically, so you can fit as much as possible into the box (heavy stuff at the bottom, lighter items at the top).
  • Bring a friend to help you lift the box.  Many of our storage spaces are three levels high (about the height of your dorm bed if bunked)…and we must fill the shelves on all levels.  A second (or third) pair of helping hands will make the process much easier
  • The closer we get to dorm move-out, the fewer spots will remain.  If you wait until the final days to store items, please be prepared for a line and a waiting time, and a potentially closed room.
  • Secure Storage cannot store furniture, floor lamps, rugs, etc. 
  • Label your items with name and class year.  We will also give you a duplicate label for the items and a receipt.
  • Please be patient as we work to fit as many boxes in the space as possible.  This means we may ask you to store your boxes in a certain location in the room.  Please understand that we are doing this in order to fit as many people in as possible.   Flexibility from students will be helpful.  Again, the puzzle that is Secure Storage can sometimes take some time to figure out and we’re working to store as efficiently as possible. You should plan you visit, from arrival to departure, to take between 20-25 minutes (when we're busy).

Location of Secure Storage:

  • Secure Storage is now located in the basement of Roberts Hall.  A limited number of carts are available to students who arrive to Secure Storage within the first hour that it is open (there are no exceptions to this).  You will need to bring a photo ID other than your Swarthmore ID to leave at Secure Storage to rent a cart.  

Secure Storage Hours of Operation (please note: we are ONLY open these times, and will not accept individual requests from students.  If you cannot store items during this time, you will need to arrange for a friend to drop off your items OR consider other storage options):

  • Monday, May 13: 9:30am - 12pm (limited carts available from 9:30am-10:30am)
  • Tuesday, May 14: 9:30am - 12pm (limited carts available from 9:30am-10:30am)
  • Wednesday, May 15: 9:30am - 12pm (limited carts available from 9:30am-10:30am)
  • Thursday, May 16: 9:30am - 12pm (limited carts available from 9:30am-10:30am); 1:00pm - 4:00pm (limited carts available from 1-2pm)
  • Friday, May 17: 9:30am - 12pm (limited carts available from 9:30am-10:30am); 1:00pm - 4:00pm (limited carts available from 1-2pm)


  • Please do not store anything valuable (you should take any item with significant value home with you). 
  • Please do not store anything that you will absolutely need your first week in the Fall (such as bedding or pillows) as Secure Storage will only be open on a limited basis in the Fall (and may not be open the day or first few days you return). If you are an early return, please plan wisely.
  • Certain items may NEVER be stored in Secure Storage locations: furniture, musical instruments, area rugs, bicycles, fridges, flammable items, combustible items, FOOD OR SPICES (you will return to find a mouse nest in your items if you store even the smallest amount of food), anything that is consumable,
  • Each box must be secured (taped shut) and labeled with your name and class year. Secure Storage are only student storage options as long as the Storage rooms have remaining space. Students should store their items as early as possible, and not wait until the last minute
  • Graduating students may not place any items in secure storage. No exceptions.
  • All items are stored at your own risk; dorm storage is not monitored by the College and insurance is not provided on any items in these locations.
  • Secure storage is available on a strict first-come, first-served basis...once a room is full, the room will be locked.
  • Only items in suitcases, boxes or storage tubs are open items.
  • All containers MUST include full name and class year.
  • If you place prohibited items in storage (or in closed locations) they will be removed, thrown away, or donated to Worthmore, without any further notice.
  • Items in storage should only be placed on shelves. Items should not be placed directly on the floor of the storage rooms (as this is a means of egress issue and it puts your items at risk for mold if the room were to flood). We will be checking the room shortly after move-out and will remove and throw away/donate any items placed on the floor, so please help us by storing your items properly.