Layers are important, if snow is present avoid cotton, like jeans, at all costs, when they get wet you are almost better off being naked. I reccomend gloves, mittens are better but they sort of limit your dexterity and I always hated having numb fingers when I got to class.
Gore-Tex is your friend as an outer shell if you can afford if, otherwise a cheap knockoff is a good idea, plain nylon makes for a weak shell thanks to its permiability by wind. polar fleece is awesome as an insulating layer. Keep your head covered and keep your feet dry. When your feet get wet you can potentially be on the virge of a problem in extremely cold weather. I used to wear polypropylene sock liners under my boot socks when I lived in Ohio, between those, wool socks, and gore-tex lined boots my feet stayed warm and dry.
Honestly, looking like the michelin man is not necessary most of the time. In temps down to freezing I would be fine in my gore-tex shell jacket. Down to 5 or 10 I would put the polar fleece liner in if i was going to be outside more than a few minutes. 3 layers was typically the most I needed even down well below zero. I would typically go with an undershirt, an insulating layer, then a shell. In really cold conditions I would wear long underwear under my pants Below 5 degrees I would break out the michelin man stuff (goose down heavy coat) for prolonged exposure. I would also typically wear a polar fleece ear band because I hated wearing hats. Also, make sure you get a longer jacket, one that goes well below your waist, literally freezing your balls off is no fun.
when wearing all this stuff keep an eye on your fluid intake, you might be surprised but you can dehydrate pretty easily in cold weather (some parts of your body sweating, very dry air). Also, if something is getting numb it is a sign you need to either wear more clothes or get inside, your body gives out plenty of warning signs (numbness, tingling, excessive shivering) before you get into real trouble.
Another thing, Never eat yellow snow.
Things were better when it was two guys in a dorm room.