Browsing Category

Student Life

Student Life Transition

8 Tips To Rely on When Choosing a University

May 19, 2021

Choosing a university is a pretty stressful experience. After all, you will likely spend at least 4 years there!

The great variety of universities doesn’t make the choice any easier. So what should you look out for while choosing a higher education institution?

Here are 8 bulletproof tips to rely on while choosing a college or university!

Decide On a Major

Some universities are famous for their science labs while others are most known for their amazing writers and innovative artists. After you have chosen what field you want to work in, take a look at top-performing universities in the industry. It will narrow down the choice significantly.

Choose a Location

If you are not comfortable living too far away from friends and family, don’t choose a location across the country. The experience will be overshadowed by a constant feeling of missing everyone. Staying closer to home will probably save you a lot of money, too! Everyone’s situation is unique.

Also, climate matters. Do you tolerate heat well? What is too cold for you? Does rainy weather make you sick? Keep all of this in mind when choosing where to attend school.

Learn More About the Campus

You will spend a lot of time on campus so you might want to discover whether it suits your preference. Check how busy it is, what vibe it has, what typical students are like, and whether professors have a big flow of students they barely know or they are available to answer all the questions and help. What is the town or city like that surrounds the campus? Make sure to check out the crime rate and if desirable locations to live if you were to choose to attend a school there.

Determine Your Budget

Some cities and universities are more costly than others. It is not only about tuition but about the cost of accommodation, food, textbooks, etc. Find out about available scholarships and internships as well. It’s not worth the heartbreak to fall in love with a campus only to find out the cost of attendance is way out of your budget.

Check Student Accommodations

If you want to leave your hometown, student accommodation is an essential criterion. If you think that it is just the place where you will sleep and it does not matter, you will be surprised how much it can change your college experience. Find out the condition of rooms, services like laundry, and the number of roommates you may have. Depending on each individual’s situation, you may want to locate student disabilities, work-study options, veteran services, or other campus outreach programs.

Learn More About Student Life

College years are the best. However, it mostly depends on you and the university. Check what clubs and societies there are on campus, what kind of events are organized, and also some opportunities for volunteering and getting to know people.

Check Out Opportunities

Going to college is a great opportunity to discover the world and yourself. Check what exchange programs, conferences, or internships you may try while studying. Many campuses have resource offices and student success programs that have more information about these opportunities.

Rank Your Needs

It’s unlikely there is a university that fulfill each and every one of your requirements. Take a look at previous points and rank what is more important to you: costs, location, or accommodation. It will make the final choice much easier. 

Stick to these tips and make a more accurate and thought-through choice. We hope you will find the right fit and have the time of your life on campus!

BIO: Susan Craig is an experienced writer and active contributor for Studocu.  She is fond of blogging, motivation articles, and management. Her goal is to provide quality and inspiring content.

Student Life

How To Find The Best Discounts For College Students

May 17, 2021

Being a college student can be expensive. Beyond the costs of tuition itself, the expenses relating to housing, food, computers, books and miscellaneous supplies can really stack up – and that’s before you throw in any entertainment, travel and the odd coffee or late-night pizza. When it comes to attending college, there can be a whole host of hidden fees.

Whatever can be done to minimize these ‘out of pocket’ expenses, the better. That’s where knowing how to make the most of college student discounts comes in.

Every 10% saved here and there can really add up, as can utilizing offers for free services or products both on and off campus. But, finding these deals and discounts isn’t always easy, so here is a guide to help you.

Here are some of the best discounts that students can access to make their college years a little more affordable.

Tech deals

Tech giants Microsoft offer a variety of discounts and even freebies to students wishing to access their software. For example, for a start, any available Microsoft product can be purchased by a student at a discount of 10%.

Students are also eligible to use their Office 365 software suite for free. This suite includes the most popular applications such as Word, PowerPoint and Excel. This alone is a saving of $70 per year. Simply head to Microsoft Student Education and have your college email details handy.

Entertainment

There are so many opportunities to save money with college student discounts when you take the time to uncover what’s available. Most movie theaters offer discounts to college students, including National chains like AMC, Regal Cinemas and Cinemark. A college ID is as good as a ‘get in free’ pass for many music venues and museums. New York’s Lincoln Center and Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Museums are just some examples of the cultural institutions that offer greatly discounted or free admissions. 

Major League Baseball also offers discounts to students in around a dozen cities, including the Chicago cubs, the Boston Red Sox, the Atlanta Braves and more.

Commerce king Amazon offers a truckload of products favorable to students, and a good deal of discounts, too. These include free books, video and music downloads, free one-day shipping, discounts of books, music and movies, and up to 80% off items like mobile phone cases, USB adapters, packs of ramen noodles, granola bars, and more.

Amazon also offers students a six month free trial and a further 50% of their membership when the trial has ended. Prime Student subscribers can also access Amazon Music Unlimited for just .99 cents a month – a massive saving from what is usually $9.99 per month. 

Transportation deals

There is certainly no shortage of great deals for students when it comes to both public and private transport.

Regarding rail, Amtrak offers a 10% discount on tickets for students who have signed up to their Student Advantage Discount Card. Rail Europe also offers a 23% discount to students taking a semester in Europe, although this does only refer to second class travel.

If you like the bus, the Student Advantage Discount Card gives you 15% off of any Greyhound tickets, for an annual fee of $30. Many college towns also offer low-cost annual or seasonal passes to take subway trains and buses across town. Contact your local town or city’s transport page or ask at your college about local train and bus deals.

Clothing, food, and more

Aimed exclusively towards college students, Unidays offers discounts to members on over 150 brand name products and services. These include companies like Apple, Samsung, American Eagle, Adidas, and more.

Simply by signing up, you automatically qualify for some amazing deals, like a free $20 Costco gift card, $20 off Apple products, and 20% of food deliveries ordered through GrubHub. This one-stop-shop allows you to select the deals you like best when you sign up – and there are plenty to choose from.

Final thoughts

Taking a moment to shop around and source great deals and discounts can save you a surprising amount of your precious student budget – leaving you feeling a little more relaxed and able to save or spend on things that have previously been a little out of reach.

Student Life

Pursuing Your STEM Career Online

May 12, 2021

Careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) can be highly lucrative. But pursuing a career in STEM can also be difficult while juggling life’s many obligations and pandemic concerns.

Given the shift to virtual classes and hybridized higher education brought about by COVID-19, online STEM learning is becoming increasingly popular. This can make pursuing your career even easier with the right preparation.

The Benefits of an Online STEM Education

Your STEM career can receive a reinvigorating boost from an online approach. As positions in science and tech continue to grow at a rapid rate, the presence of virtual options in education can mean greater flexibility and accessibility for you.

Among the benefits of online STEM education are the following:

  • Online learning puts your schedule into your own hands, allowing you to develop better time management for juggling work, learning, and family time.
  • Online learning gives you experience with new tech platforms and opportunities for developing self-motivation skills.
  • Online learning allows you to develop virtual leadership potential and redefine your skillset for the new working normal.

As tech advancements are helping to spark an interest in STEM studies from a young age, the benefits they bring usher in new opportunities for all generations. Virtually networking with classmates and professors mean you can explore your career with the safety and flexibility required in the modern workforce.

Exploring Your Options

But beginning your online STEM career takes plenty of preparation for success. From the way you manage your time while studying online to the program in which you enroll, proper thought and consideration will directly influence your ability to thrive.

First, explore all your options for degrees and vocational programs. A wide variety of STEM positions are out there, from data analytics to civil engineering. An online Master’s in business analytics, for example, can be obtained in as little as a single year, with short course eight-week options available to interested students.

The right program for you will depend on your intended degree. Career paths in STEM include:

  • Chemistry
  • Computer science
  • Information technology
  • Engineering
  • Mathematics, and so many more.

Find your niche program that can support your career goals in a technical field. Not every STEM position requires a long-term, university commitment, and with the explosion of virtual learning, finding something that works for you is easier than ever.

With online learning, the world is your classroom. Look for courses that help you achieve your goals and develop strategies now for online learning success.

Flexibly Advance Your Career

The chief merit of online learning is its ability to offer flexible, customizable career advancement. This can be vital in fighting mental and physical fatigue in college, as you’ll focus more directly on your personal education goals in a schedule tailor-made for you. Work a job, wake up late, and keep your eye on your kids all while moving towards a lucrative career path.

Online learning gives you the tools to navigate life’s challenges while developing yourself. Take advantage of these benefits in pursuing your STEM career.

BIO: Sam Bowman has a passion for learning. As a seasoned professional writer, he specializes in topics about people, education, tech and how they merge. In his spare time he likes running, reading, and combining the two in a run to his local bookstore.

Health Student Life

5 Alternatives to Reset Your Mind, Body And Career After Pandemic Inactivity

May 10, 2021

The pandemic caused substantial changes to our lifestyles. Stay-at-home orders and social distancing generally made us more sedentary and unhealthy, from many points of view. The average person probably put on a few pounds. More so, many people’s mental happiness may have declined due to a lack of socialization. Thankfully, we’re starting to see the end of lockdowns, and we can begin rebuilding our minds, body, and career. Combine physical exercise, healthy food, and meditation, and you’ll feel better, stronger, and more capable of advancing your career.

Let’s explore five alternatives to reset our system:

1. Combating occupational disease

Deskbound jobs are dangerous if left unchecked. And if office jobs were problematic before, nowadays, the issue is greater. The combination between the static nature of desk jobs and the pandemic’s general inactivity is highly detrimental to our health. Sedentarism, or lack of activity, can cause many health problems. Too much sitting can lead to chronic pain, cardiovascular problems, and metabolic issues. That’s why it’s vital to contrast it with regular breaks. As a general rule, you should take a 5-minute break every half an hour. This might be taking a few steps around your room, or even grabbing a cup of water or coffee.

Alternatively, people that spend too much time on their feet are also at risk. Standing too much can strain leg muscles, ligaments, and veins. Just as you would take a break from sitting down all day, take a few breaks from standing to sit for a few minutes.

2.   Sport, self-massage, and stretching

Apart from small work breaks, you should work out a few times a week and stretch daily. Physical activity is one of the best ways to replenish health, according to research. Workouts don’t have to be complex or take up a big part of your day. You can use your own bodyweight or opt for weights. Search the internet for beginner home workouts and get right into it. Put on some music and make a party out of it! 

Also, don’t forget to include heart exercises. Even in tight spaces, you can still perform jumping jacks, burpees, and similar cardio drills that will do wonders for your whole body.

Don’t forget how important it is to stretch and massage your muscles after a work out! Take 5 to 15 minutes to do a few stretches. For muscle soreness, using a foam roller will help with this.

3.   Plant-based nutrition, hydration, and sleep

The general eating trend of the pandemic is delivery food. We’ve all been there. Unfortunately, fast food damages our physical health and keeps us from being happy with ourselves. If you want to improve yourself beyond recognition, start integrating plant-based meals into your diet; this means little to no animal products. It may seem challenging, but the rewards are well worth it. Don’t know where to start? Here are the basics:

  • Fruits in a large variety. Incorporate a piece of fruit in meals or swap them out for an afternoon snack.
  • Vegetables should be your foundation. Eat them raw, boiled, and cooked.
  • Tubers like potatoes, beets, carrots will give your body energy for longer periods.
  • Whole grains like rice, grains, oats, barley help with digestion and balances your system.
  • Legumes such as beans, lentils, pulses are fantastic sources of protein without inflammatory components. 

Sleeping and drinking enough water are also fundamental. Generally, you want eight hours of quality rest. Furthermore, the “8 by 8 rule” is a terrific way of keeping count of your water intake: drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water daily.    

4.   Meditation and yoga

Just about everybody knows about meditation and yoga, but very few practice it. There’s a reason why similar disciplines became so popular even in the Western world – it’s because they work. For instance, Hatha yoga and Tai chi are excellent practices for newbies. Search online for a few simple routines, try them for a little bit, and see how you feel.     

5.   Mindfulness techniques

The last point of our list regards stress management. In this mind technique, the individual tries to rationalize the negative feelings as soon as possible. Becoming aware of harmful emotions can cancel the consequences of said sentiments. It takes a little practice, but the method can save you a ton of headaches.

For example, suppose you’ve received some bad news at work regarding hour reduction. Instead of feeling dreadful, try to become aware of your emotions and control them from the get-go. Sure, fewer hours mean less pay, but nothing fatal happened in the grand scheme of things. You’re not in control of the hour management, so why go crazy over it? Breathe in deep a couple of times and go on with your day stress-free!      

            The pandemic situation is harsh on everyone’s mind, body, and career. However, by eating clean, sleeping well, and drinking enough water, you’ve made the first step to a healthier lifestyle. Add in physical activity, stretching, and self-massage, and you’ll reinforce yourself with golden armor. Lastly, adding mindfulness techniques and frequent meditation/yoga will make sure your mind is ready for any challenge.    

BIO: Charlie Svensson is an experienced writer and content creator on topics such as education, marketing, and self-growth.

Adulting Student Life

Creative Ways to Map Out Financial Goals as a Student

May 7, 2021
Hand holding up money

As a student, you probably have plenty of financial goals in mind for your future. Having goals is a good thing, and it can keep you on the right responsible track to saving money and having enough to cover your expenses.

But, if your goals feel more like dreams or you haven’t thoroughly thought them out, you could have a harder time achieving them. 

Thankfully,  with a little creativity, you can map out your money goals and take charge of your finances from a young age.

With that in mind, let’s look at a couple of creative ways to map out those goals and how you can use them on your financial journey.

Have Fun With Budgeting

You might think of the word “budget” and groan. But, budgeting doesn’t have to be a tedious or boring practice. That’s especially true when you break down your budget into different categories to achieve your short-term, mid-term, and long-term goals.

You can separate your budget into these different areas by putting a bit away into each of them. Visualize it as having three jars set out on your counter. How much of your budget do you want to use right now? What about in a year or so? What about in 20 years? As a student, it can be hard to think about your life after retirement, but imagine how much you could have saved up if you do think about it now.

Some other examples of long-term financial goals include:

  • Paying off debt
  • Saving for a car
  • Striving for homeownership
  • Paying for college

Those goals might sound closer to home for a student. So, as tempting as it might be to use all your budget in the here and now, think about your future and all you can do with what you save. If you’re having trouble figuring out just how much you should be putting away, don’t be afraid to try a budget calculator. You’ll be able to play around with numbers to determine what will work for you.

Try Mind Mapping

If you’ve never heard of mind mapping, it focuses on having a central goal, then using different “branches” toward achieving it.

Sound confusing? It doesn’t have to be.

When you have a main goal, you can add “branches” to your map in different directions. Each branch will be another tactic you can use toward achieving that goal. For example, if your goal is to save up enough money for a car, one area of your map might include things like working extra jobs, selling some of your unwanted items, or taking on “gig work.” Another section might include giving up things like going out to eat or entertainment until you have enough.

Mind mapping is even easier when you use software to build your map. Visualization is important when it comes to achieving your goals. It gives you something concrete to look at and focus on while you put in the work.

It’s never too early and you’re never too young to create financial goals for yourself. Doing so now can set you up for a much more comfortable future. Keep these creative ideas in mind as you start to work through those goals as effectively as possible.

BIO: Dan Matthews is a writer with a degree in English from Boise State University. He has extensive experience writing online at the intersection of business, finance, marketing, and culture.

Student Life

The Skills Every Student Needs to Succeed in College

May 5, 2021

Learning how to learn can transform mediocre students into academic superstars. The skills required to succeed in college don’t come naturally to everyone, but they can be taught and encouraged. University professors and administrators put a lot of effort into designing curriculums that progressively develop their students’ intellectual faculties. Here are the skills students should learn to further their education.

Oral and Written Communication

Expressing oneself clearly and concisely is crucial to success in higher education. Fortunately, most schools emphasize writing and speaking skills, so students should take advantage of courses that involve writing papers and giving presentations.

At colleges and universities, writing focused classes are general education requirements and make up most of the program for liberal arts and social science majors. For business majors who want to know what to talk about from a business, sales dashboard examples can give minute-to-minute updates about businesses.

Students are not expected to be expert oral and written communicators right from the start. College courses start with the basics of composition and public speaking and then successively build upon one another to develop students’ expertise.

Students can become even better writers by visiting their university’s writing center to receive extra instruction from graduate students and writing coaches. To become better public speakers, students can get more experience by joining their local Toastmasters club, a nonprofit educational organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills all over the world.

Writing and public speaking aren’t easy skills for most people. However, with practice, students can improve, and in turn, these skills can open doors to more education opportunities.

Critical Thinking and Analysis

Approaching a problem objectively and analyzing it to arrive at a reasoned perspective is a highly valued skill in academia. As with writing and public speaking, professors do not expect new students to arrive at college with perfectly developed critical thinking and analytical abilities. In fact, many introductory courses aim to nurture these talents so that they can be applied to higher-order issues as students advance through their studies.

Critical thinking works because the thinker learns to take his or her own preconceptions out of the equation. This way the problem is seen clearly and evaluated without bias. Analysis takes a problem one step further and divides it into parts to discern how each part influences the whole.

Critical thinking and analysis can become even more specialized and refined by applying theories and methods. Philosophers and scientists have developed ways of approaching problems built upon either intentional basic assumptions or knowledge taken to be true.

As students become more sophisticated critical thinkers, they need to be able to approach issues from both a clear perspective and one informed by theory. In this way, critical thinking and analytical skills can enhance a student’s educational experience.

Curiosity and Reading

Curiosity can take a student far on their educational journey. Being curious about the world, its peoples, cultures, and history are a prerequisite for serious learning. Without this trait, students can’t sustain the attention and interest necessary to flourish in higher education.

What’s more, curiosity cannot be taught; however, it can be inspired. Therefore, professors bear even more responsibility for how well their students respond to their assignments.

Whether their curiosity is inherent or acquired, students must take the initiative to seek out knowledge on their own. Developing the habit of reading for pleasure or for information is a great way to sustain a curious mindset. Since the advent of the internet, finding interesting subjects to read about has never been easier.

Much of the world’s knowledge is at everyone’s fingertips, from newspapers to academic journals. Furthermore, the internet never closes, so a curious student focused on their education can access their passion anytime from almost anywhere.

Learning the skills necessary to meet one’s educational goals is a talent in and of itself. Most teachers and professors understand how difficult learning to learn can be and devote much of a curriculum to teaching these foundational skills. The world changes quickly, so curious students can take these skills and apply them to their next educational endeavor.

BIO: Brett Clawson has a degree in Business Management and has started a couple of small businesses. When he’s not focusing his time on those, he spends time with his wife and two sons. His oldest son has entered the wonderful realm of college, and he now enjoys sharing tips that he and his son have found essential for college life.

Student Life

Helpful Tips for Completing School Online

May 3, 2021

Completing school online is a choice you might make in order to free up time, cut down on a commute, or even save money. No matter what your reasons are for taking classes online, it’s important to manage school in a way that is efficient. 

Identify Academic Goals

First, figure out what your academic goals are, and what you would like to achieve. Maybe you need a certain letter grade in order to pass a class or something similar. Figure out what you hope to achieve before the semester is over, and create steps that are manageable and can help get you where you need to go. You can even break down certain steps that you’ll need to accomplish into smaller ones, which can make the process of reaching these academic goals easier for you overall. 

Create a Study Space

It’s important to have a study space to give you a place where you can focus on what you are trying to learn. While some people are lucky enough to be able to tune everything out and focus on their classes and studies intensely, not everyone is. It may make sense for you to invest in an office privacy booth where you can study without worrying about anyone disturbing your concentration. The booth can be placed in any large area, or even outdoors, if that’s what you prefer. Having your own study space allows you to get into the right mindset and focus on what is going on in front of you. It’s also a good idea to design your space with colors that appeal most to you, and decorate it with some personal touches. A calm and quiet environment will allow you to make strides in your studies while learning from home.

Plan Your Time Out

Get a planner and make sure you are carving out time for your studies. Because many colleges allow you to study anywhere, this can sometimes make it difficult, since you don’t have a set time you have to be at school. Craving out time forces you to focus on your class. You should also estimate how much time you’ll need to put aside for homework, writing any papers, or any other work that you’ll need to do in order to complete the class. It can be easy to forget if you don’t have it written down in front of you, so taking time to manage this step can be helpful. 

Don’t Get Overwhelmed With Classes

If this is your first time taking several online classes, it can be useful to try a few, and see how you can manage the workload. Again, it is often easy to overestimate how much time you’ll have. Doing only a few classes gives you the chance to see how well this works with your own schedule. 

If you plan on taking online classes, make sure you identify any academic goals you have and what you’ll need to do to complete them. Create a study space where you can go to focus on what you are learning, set up in a manner similar to school. Plan out your time, and make sure there is enough time for studies and additional work you’ll need to do. Finally, don’t take too many college classes and overwhelm yourself. These helpful tips can make it easier to study at home, without feeling frustrated. 

BIO: Brett Clawson has a degree in Business Management and has started a couple of small businesses. When he’s not focusing his time on those, he spends time with his wife and two sons. His oldest son has entered the wonderful realm of college, and he now enjoys sharing tips that he and his son have found essential for college life.

Career Student Life Transition

10 Powerful Tips For Graduates Entering The Workforce During COVID-19

April 29, 2021

Across many industries, the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have caused uncertainty, affecting employment and experience opportunities for new graduates entering the workforce. As one example, a growing number of candidates are now interviewed virtually, impacting the opportunity to build relationships with the people involved in recruiting.

On the extreme side of things, many of today’s recent graduates will also be required to start their professional careers from home. Here are some insights for successfully entering the workforce during COVID-19. 

#1: Don’t Stop Learning 

Graduating from college doesn’t mean you are done with learning. While the knowledge and certificate or degree you acquired are valuable possessions, they are not the only things that lead to success. Beyond academic knowledge, there are a lot of things left to be learned that will put you ahead of others in finding, achieving, and being successful in your work life.

#2: Look For Internships First 

Though it is good to have aspirations for high-paying jobs, it’ hard to go from graduate into lucrative roles without taking a few other steps first. The number of open vacancies for recent graduates is now limited than in the past. Businesses are still trying to figure out how COVID has impacted their company and the industry in general, and they aren’t willing to make financial commitments or take the same risks they did in the past. If entry-level positions are slim, check out internships. One could even land you a full-time position once it’s completed!

#3: Start Building A Portfolio 

A portfolio is documentary evidence of what you are capable of doing. When other candidates compete for the same jobs with traditional resumes and cover letters, having a portfolio will help to differentiate you as a valuable resource. When desirable opportunities are not available, consider starting private projects related to the types of jobs you’ll love to be doing in the future. Or, consider volunteering in similar roles to show your strengths.

#4: Commit To Proactive Networking 

Being proactive about networking will put you ahead of other people that are usually waiting in a reactionary mode. You might have heard that your net worth is directly related to your network.  And, most people are holding back interacting with others because of the pandemic….now is the time to stand-out and shine when others are waiting! If your LinkedIn profile isn’t already in top shape, spend some time to do and use it as one of your greatest networking tools.

#5: Embrace A Relentless Drive

For you to move from being a graduate into the world of work, you need a relentless drive. More than anything else, this characteristic will empower you to withstand inevitable obstacles you may discover along the way. And, you can share those learning experiences with potential employers. A strong work ethic can land you just about any job, regardless of experience.

#6: Be Adaptable To Change 

When you are entering the workforce as a graduate, you are bound to experience a lot of opportunities that don’t match your expectations. At that moment, your best bet is to be open and adaptable to change. All employers want people who can adapt and change course during challenging times. This goes along with your drive. Work hard and be relentless!

#7: Try New Things 

Both in terms of learning and networking, you must commit to trying new things. Another way to look at this is that you have to embrace going outside of your comfort zone. The world works differently because of COVID-19 and you need to learn how to adapt. This might mean taking the time to learn how to use the new software the company is using for all of its virtual meetings. Or, figuring out the ins and outs of a project management tool that seems confusing now, but will be instrumental in organizing your team’s projects down the line.

#8: Define Your Meaning of Success

The big question is this – what does career success mean to you? Once you clearly identify what success means to you, convey that to others in a way that relates to your personal values, vision, and life purpose. Once this is communicated clearly, others can understand how they can help you achieve this, and how it fits with their goals for recruiting the right talent.

#9: Set Measurable Goals 

Having a goal is important. But if you don’t have a way to measure progress towards accomplishment of your goals, achieving them is difficult. As important as it is to set goals, measuring progress, and modifying your strategy when needed, are also important. Don’t aim unrealistically high nor sell yourself short and aim too low.

#10: Find Your Internal Motivation 

Motivation is the fuel that drives people to accomplish their goals. Without it, life will seem like a challenge. However, people need to find what drives them and satisfies their sense of self-worth and purpose. External sources can motivate you to achieve some things for a little while; however, they’re limited in helping you attain long-term, sustained success.

Spend time gaining self-awareness about your strengths, your goals, your measures of success, and what can get in the way of attaining these things.  Once you understand yourself better, you’ll know what you need for continuous growth, and which career roles will be best for you.

Student Life

Spring Cleaning Tips for Your Dorm Room

April 24, 2021

Your spring semester is in its second half and will soon be coming to an end. This doesn’t mean your life will start to calm down, though! Between studying for final exams and all the campus events that come with the end of a school year, one thing that likely will get sent to the sidelines, or maybe even overlooked completely, is your spring cleaning routine.

Taking some time to provide your environment with a deep clean will not only make things easier for you when you pack up at the end of the semester, but it will also create a much calmer, mentally positive workspace. Here are a few spring cleaning tips for your dorm room, apartment, or your remote learning space.

Gather Your Supplies Before You Begin

No matter how prepared you think you are to clean your dorm room, there’s likely to be a tool or cleaning supply that would make the entire process easier for you in the long run. Running low on laundry detergent? Are you out of disinfectant? Make a list of the supplies you need before you start cleaning. Gathering all of your supplies in advance can save you tons of time down the road.

Whether you’re trying to be extra careful to observe social distancing, you don’t have a reliable ride to the store, or you just don’t have much time, a home essentials delivery service can provide you with all the necessary supplies you need to get the job done. A service like this can help you in your cleaning endeavors by providing items like detergent, disinfectant, pest removal traps, air fresheners, toilet paper, and paper towels. Oftentimes, you can even find home cleaners with natural ingredients that can be less harsh on your small space.

Tackle One Area or Category at a Time

Depending on how your brain deals with patterns and organization, this system will work differently for everyone. One way to tackle a cluttered dorm or online learning space is to select one area and tackle it first. Work your way from top to bottom or left to right through your zone to have the satisfaction of seeing progress as you go. As you clean each space, try out some different organization tactics that could make your studying more efficient. We recently shared 8 DIY dorm room storage tips to get you started.

Looking for a different approach? Channel your inner Marie Kondo! Start with similar categories when downsizing and organizing. In her book, The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Kondo recommends beginning with clothing as it often has the least emotional or sentimental attachments. You can then prioritize from there to your books, devices, photos, and so on. This way you can systematically declutter and reorganize your life.

Dispose of Unnecessary Items

In the process of cleaning and downsizing, you’ll more than likely come across many items you no longer need. Some of these items can be more mundane (and borderline disgusting) than others. Do you have a bag full of plastic bottles you meant to take to the recycling area? Leftover takeout boxes or beverage cans from your weekend hangout? Gather them up and bring them to the proper receptacles. If it’s a bit of a hike, bag everything up and set it by the door. If you have roommates, see if they can give you a hand taking everything out to the dumpster.

Other items might simply be unused. Have a stack of old t-shirts from an organization you don’t belong to anymore or a sweatshirt from an ex? Another one of Marie Kondo’s helpful tips, known as The KonMari Method, is essentially if you haven’t worn it in a year, then it might be time to give it away. The more you can do to compartmentalize your space before summer break, the less you’ll have to do at the end of the semester whether you’re graduating or not.

Reorganize and Reprioritize Your Life

Final exams have arrived, and with them comes countless late nights filled with hours of studying. Not only can this be overwhelming, it can be difficult to know where to focus your time. Create a strategic checklist or roadmap of your current course grades and prioritize where you should focus your time. If you’re feeling great in English Literature but feel like you’re a bit behind in Biology, this can help visualize where you need to spend the bulk of your time.

You can use this same roadmap for spring cleaning your dorm room. Use a task sheet to help keep your cleaning task goals organized and attainable. This works well if you live alone or have roommates, as long as everyone is made aware of the sheet, their responsibilities, and the timeframe in which they are expected to complete the tasks. Before it is time to start cleaning, make sure everything is in an easily accessible, easily found place. Containers and label makers can help with organizing your supplies. If you are in an online learning environment, many of these tips can still be applied to your home to help you stay organized and focused. For additional insights on managing your time and staying organized from home, check out these helpful tips.

While spring cleaning can seem like a daunting challenge, it is a process that can help you to focus, especially with the difficulties of finals week just around the corner. Remember, all it takes is a little forethought and organization to prepare you for your day of cleaning and disinfecting. Doing this will ensure you optimize your space and eliminate clutter for a calm and healthy study zone!

Student Life

Bullet Journaling to Help You Get Organized

April 22, 2021

A recent survey done by Greenfield Online found that 47% of students felt they didn’t have good enough organizational skills to succeed at college. 54% felt that if they had been better organized, they would have ultimately achieved a higher grade. The fact is that your organizational skills can have a direct impact on your success.

This is why it’s important to find a system that works for you. Bullet journaling is ideal for this because it follows your own system and is all kept in one single notebook. You can use your bullet journal (BuJo) to brainstorm, make to-do lists, create timetables and schedules, and set yourself reminders. This will help you get your college work done and achieve the grade that you deserve

What is bullet journaling? 

The bullet journal was first developed by the designer Ryder Carroll. It is a unique method of organization using a journal containing dots rather than lines. Since the method was brought to the public in 2013, it has gained a big following on social media, and has also had a successful Kickstarter campaign. All you need is a pen and notebook. The main features of a bullet journal are:

  • A table of contents or index
  • Rapid logging – using simple symbols to help organize your tasks
  • Logs – your to-do lists, including timescales
  • Collections -your ideas, organized in a logical way
  • Migration – an efficient way of updating your lists and tasks, moving forward items still to do

Keeping logs

Your logs are one of the most effective ways of organizing your college work. Making these lists is an easy way to get your priorities straight and manage your time every day. If you get into this practice and make it a habit, new and more complex tasks won’t seem so overwhelming. This will be easier if you keep a tidy workspace around you. Being organized promotes a positive mind set, and will help your mental wellbeing to be free from clutter. To help you keep track and get organized, bullet journaling involves using rapid logging symbols to help you keep track of what you have done and what you are still to achieve.

These symbols are:

  • Task
  • Note

     X    Completed

     >   Migrated

     <   Scheduled

     ⭘ Event

For each task you have listed in your log, marking it with a symbol will help you to keep track. When you migrate tasks to a new to-do list, you can decide whether they are still a priority, or whether to simply remove them from your journal completely. 

Building Collections

The collections in your bullet journal will make up most of your notebook. These are your thoughts and ideas, and can be on any subject you choose. Many people keep track of sleep patterns, fitness, phases of the moon, poetry ideas, restaurants to try, or books to read. Having a section for keeping track of your student finances could be extremely useful too. You may find it helpful to make a collection for each subject that you are studying. You might want to list research you are undertaking, or papers that you are intending to read. You can also have a collection simply for brainstorming, using it as a creative outlet – an effective type of personal therapy to help you focus your ideas and give them clarity. 

Bullet journaling is an organized but personal way to keep track of your life. As a student, your journal can be a valuable tool in helping you to get your work done and stay focussed throughout the school year.