Leo suggests contacting the school directly, particularly the book store to see what they advise and what deals they have going on for incoming students. Also talk to the chairman of the engineering department and seek their recommendation for what they are using at the school. If it's Windows, and it likely is, then Leo advises sticking with a Windows 7 laptop. Leo also recommends getting a Kensington lock to prevent theft.
Leo's a fan of Lenovo, Dell, and Asus. Those are three very good brands. He'll also want to figure out if he wants a light ultra book, or more of a 'desktop replacement' class of laptop. He probably won't need a printer, but that's another thing to find out.
Laptops are often also used as home theater systems in dorms for many students. It may be important to get one with a decent sized screen, Blu-ray disc player, and external speakers as well.