Browsing Tag

college tips

Adulting

6 Smart Packing Tips if You’re Going to Study Abroad

September 10, 2020

Were you given the opportunity to study abroad? If so, you are probably counting down the days until you leave.

Which now brings us to the question: What will you bring? 

Trying to stuff all the things that you need into your suitcase or carry-on can probably be daunting, especially if you are unsure what is waiting for you the moment you step off the plane. 

Fortunately, we have come up with six smart packing tips to make everything a lot easier:

Pack for the Weather

Make sure that you research first the usual climate in the new city or country you are moving to, then plan accordingly. We suggest that you bring a light raincoat, a warm jacket, and items that can be easily layered. Remember that the climate of your study abroad country will make or break what you pack. 

Check Cultural Norms

If you are traveling to a country that is more conservative with how they dress, checking the cultural norms first will save you from packing items that will deem inappropriate in that country. This especially applies to clothes like shorts, dresses, and swimwear. 

The last thing that you want to do is to wear culturally insensitive clothes. For instance, you will not be allowed inside spiritual areas like churches or temples if you are not all covered up properly. 

Use the 12-Day Trick

We suggest that you pack outfits that are good for 12 days. That’s about two weeks worth of clothes. No matter how long you will be staying or studying abroad, chances are, packing outfits that are good for 12 days will be enough for you to attend class and explore the new place. 

If you feel tempted to pack beyond 12 days, then you might consider that shopping abroad is also part of the experience. 

Pack the Essential Documents

When studying abroad, you might need an extensive list of documentation. This list will often include:

  • Passport: This is your first key to studying abroad. Without this, you cannot travel outside of the country.
  • Visa: Depending on your country of origin, some countries won’t require you to have a visa. However, you might need to apply for a student visa since you’ll be studying abroad.
  • Medical Certificate: This is proof that you took flu shots and that you are healthy enough to travel.
  • Return Flight Details: Although not all, there are countries that require return flight details. This is to ensure that you won’t be overstaying.
  • Student Finance Documentation: You might also be required to prove that you can financially support yourself while studying abroad. This includes a letter to prove the capability for financial support from your parents or guardians.
  • University Letter of Acceptance: This is another proof that you are to stay in a country to study. 

Don’t Pack Things You can Buy

So you might want to pack a certain brand of shampoo or lotion you are using. But the thing is, these can also weigh down your suitcase. To avoid excess baggage fees, leave some of these items behind. Instead, opt to buy local products at grocery stores or drugstores once you arrive.

But you should also consider bringing travel sizes of these essentials. That way, you will have plenty of time to settle in once you arrive where you are studying. You will not have to run to the nearest grocery or drugstore to buy these essentials. 

Bring Your Gadgets

For most gadgets and appliances (curling irons, razors, and hair dryers), you might need a voltage converter. Usually, plugs from different countries are different, so is the amperage. 

Make sure to check with the manufacturer; more than likely you will find information on their sites about travel. That way, you will know whether or not a certain device can work with a converter. If it is not, it could potentially become a fire hazard, and might even destroy your appliance. 

Packing your stuff when you leave to study abroad can be challenging, but you can breathe in a sigh of relief once you are done. So, better get your suitcase ready, and prepare yourself as your educational adventure begins!

Career

Data Analytics in Business: Everything Students Should Know

September 10, 2020

If you are a business student at any US college, there are basic things that you should know. Currently, the world is relying on data to make every decision. Thanks to advancements in technology, data experts are able to analyze data to make sensible conclusions.

It is not too early for business students to know how data analytics works and how it impacts the business environment. The good thing is that many reputable schools offer this course. Let’s look at some insights on why students should acquire data analytics skills while still in college.

Data Analytics Explained

Today, the total data in the world is no longer in terabytes. Experts say that the current data in the entire globe is over 30 zettabytes. The amount of data is increasing rapidly, and every business has to account for this. As mentioned, data analytics involves the use of specific tools to analyze fresh raw data, generate sensible reports, and then use the results to make conclusions. Students in the US should start learning the skills involved in data analytics as soon as possible before they move into the actual work environment.

Why Students Need Data Analytics Skills

  •  Every business interacts with data – There is no single business in the US or the entire world that does not collect data. Whether students will create small startups or work for established companies, they will have to interact with data. The more skills they gather in school, the better their job performance will be.
  •  Enhance decision making – Young entrepreneurs with data analytics skills from school adapt faster in the work environment. They can quickly understand the concepts surrounding the business data they receive. Learning to make decisions that are backed by factual data as early as now is very crucial for all students.
  • Understand the right tools of work – Data analytics is all about using technology, particularly the right tools. By now, students should have a list of the most reliable tools they can use in any department. For instance, those who want to major in sales and marketing might have interacted with Tropare, which is one of the best providers of collaboration and data analytics tools for marketers.
  • Faster career growth – Most young professionals get a promotion at work if they adapt quickly and show exceptional results. With data analytics skills from a business school, the career growth path will be fast.
  • Accurate predictions – Some students in business schools can already make future predictions about the business environment. This helps them to prepare appropriately for what is to come. By the time they begin a business or are employed, they know the basics of the actual environment.

Conclusion

There are many more reasons why any business student in America should understand the importance of data analytics. Today, there is a high demand for data analysts in big firms. You can also use the skills to prosper in your own business. From the above insights, you probably do not want to miss this opportunity while you are still in college.

Health

How To Make Connections in the Era of Covid-19

August 1, 2020

It is no surprise that in the face of Covid-19, countless changes have had to be made to maintain the goals of the different facets of university life. Changes of learning, changes in teaching and most importantly, changes in community are being formed to better supplement the lack of in person connection. 

In all of this chaos, especially for students entering college for the first time, meeting people and finding friends can feel like an impossible task but luckily there are ways to quickly and effectively not just meet, but actually connect with others. 

Find Gateways

The first way is not a destination but more of the first steps and gateways that can lead to the end goal and these are the school sponsored or facilitated conversations. These can take the form of a discussion on Canvas, a school sponsored app like ZeeMee or in the classes themselves. While the conversations within these settings are most often stale, they provide an area where you can meet people and then form separate group chats aside from that. 

Social Media

The second area of importance are the various social media platforms available. Things such as finding roommates by going to instagram and looking for people that are the same year and college as you, snapchat group chats, twitter, or reddit, the possibilities on these sites have the doors, you just need to open them. 

Make Yourself Accessible

The third way is the thing that people get wrong most often and that is because they forget that they need to make themselves easier to find as well. Hardly anyone has a large group of friends going into a University so by making yourself easier to find on any of the mediums above, and doing things like listing or showing your interests will help others that are in the same position find you.

At the end of the day, all it takes is some effort and information to be able to make friends easily and quickly in this unknown environment so while this post is meant to help students with the information, it is only half of the solution to solve this complex problem students are facing. 

Adulting Uncategorized

The 10 Best Things I Bought for my Freshman Year

August 1, 2020

When you are first moving to college and getting ready to be on your own it can be overwhelming deciding what to bring. My freshman year I ended up buying a lot of things that never proved to be useful. It is important to pack smart since you will likely not have a lot of space. Here are a few things that I bought my freshman year that I still use today.

  1. A Good Mattress Pad

Sleep is one of the most important things you can do for your health. It can be hard to get enough sleep amidst the excitement of freshman year. You don’t want an uncomfortable mattress to be the reason you can’t get enough sleep. If you get a quality mattress pad you can use it for years to come and you will definitely feel the benefit.

  1. Spotify Student Membership

One of the perks of being a college student are all of the discounts that are available to you. One of my favorite student perks is Spotify’s student membership. The membership only costs $5 a month and also includes Hulu and Showtime. This can satisfy all your entertainment needs and provides lots of music to study to.

  1. Yoga Mat

Exercise is always valuable for relieving stress and staying healthy. Having a yoga mat in your room is a way to workout at home when you don’t have time to go to your school’s gym.  

  1. Reusable utensils, plates, and cups

When you want to reheat some take out or have a snack, it’s always good to have reusable dishes on hand. Even if you have a meal plan, you will probably be eating in your room as well. Reusables are very handy and are better for the environment than disposables. 

  1. Weather appropriate clothing

If you are moving from a hot to cold climate or cold to hot, it is important to research ahead of time what kind of clothing is needed. You don’t want to be without a proper coat in the freezing cold!

  1. Power Strip

I would first check to see if your housing allows this but it can be very helpful to have a power strip for all of your chargers since you may only have access to one outlet. 

  1. Wheeled Laundry Basket

This may be a bit more expensive than a traditional laundry basket but it will be very useful when you are hauling your laundry to and from the laundry room. 

  1. Heated Blanket

If you are going to be living in a colder climate, a heated blanket is a necessary luxury. It can be hard to adjust to a new climate and this will give you some comfort on particularly cold nights. 

  1. HydroFlask

Staying hydrated can help you stay healthy. A hydroflask will keep your water cold all day and is a great motivator to drink water. 

  1. Polaroids

Pictures are a great way to decorate your room while bringing a personal touch. Whether you use a polaroid photo printer or a service like Parabo, photos can help to lift your spirits when homesick and document new memories in college.

Freshman year is without a doubt going to have its excitements and struggles! Regardless, these are somethings that you are sure to invest in that you will continue to use later in life.

Student Life

Testimonial: Tuition Insurance Gives Peace of Mind to College Parents

July 30, 2020
Tuition insurance is smart for families to consider

Tuition insurance exists to provide a refund for a covered medical withdrawal when colleges and universities don’t. The best way for college students and their families to understand the value of GradGuard’s Tuition Insurance is to hear from a customer directly.

Anna learned about GradGuard’s tuition insurance before her son started college in New Jersey.

“We weren’t exactly sure if he was going to follow through on college,” Anna said. “He has some medical issues, so we weren’t sure exactly what was going to go on.”

Anna said it was in the back of her mind that Tuition Insurance was a good idea to have, so she purchased a policy for her son as a precaution.

“We weren’t exactly sure if we would need it, but we thought it was well worth it,” Anna said.

Worth the cost for peace of mind

Tuition Insurance can be purchased for as little as about 1% of the cost of tuition for the majority of schools that GradGuard directly partners with. That’s $10,000 worth of coverage for $106.

Anna’s son needed to withdraw from school for a covered medical shortly after the semester started. Because she had purchased a policy before the start of classes, she was able to file a claim for tuition and fees.

“The fact that it’s insurance and it’s peace of mind, and we actually had it, led us to feel more comfortable,” Anna said.

Thirty years ago, tuition insurance may not have been necessary, but today, given the high cost of college and ordinary risks of college life, it’s smart for all families to be vigilant.

“You just never know when you actually need it,” Anna said. “I would recommend it highly.”

College is one of the largest investments most families will ever make after buying a home. You insure your home, and your car, so why not also insure your tuition? You can with GradGuard’s Tuition Insurance.

Questions to ask your college or university:

What will happen to my tuition payment if my college student is forced to withdraw from school due to an illness or even COVID-19?

What is the school’s refund policy?

Do you offer tuition insurance?

GradGuard is thankful to work closely with more than 350 colleges and universities nationwide, including Ramapo College of New Jersey, where Anna’s son was enrolled. Learn more about how to buy Tuition Insurance for your school using GradGuard’s college search tool.

Student Life Uncategorized

5 Tips To Being A Successful Student-Athlete

July 22, 2020

When you first think of a student athlete, you think of the free clothes, gear, travel, scholarships, and the fame that comes along with it. You get to travel the country and play your favorite sport in front of numbers of fans. Although being a student-athlete may sound glamorous and fun, it is not to mention the stress that comes with the 20 hours of athletic training per week.  

Here are 5 tips on being a successful student athlete:

  1. Utilize All Your Resources

Aside from having a rigorous training schedule, student-athletes need to worry about attending all their classes and submitting all their coursework on time. As a student-athlete, maximizing the use of tutors and academic centers will make your life a lot easier. Using these resources will make it a lot easier to finish work on time and get private attention on topics you have not grasped. Resources are there for a reason!

2. Time Management

With the training, lifting, conditioning, classes,  and homework , it can be difficult to plan some free time for yourself. Making sure you have a set plan every day will help you find times during the day to relax and reenergize.

  1. Form Relationships With Your Professors

The first week of the school year is the most important for student-athletes. Establishing relationships with your professors will show them your initiative to do well in their class as well as getting on their good side. It is important to attend all the classes and office hours you can to continue to show your hard work ethic and initiative to do well in the class. Doing this will make it easier to ask professors for help if a situation arises.

  1. Get Enough Sleep

Getting 7-9 hours of sleep as a student-athlete, is one of the most important factors. Not getting enough sleep will make you feel sluggish and lead to an unproductive day. This directly correlates to your athletic and academic performance. According to the National Library of Medicine students that receive less than 8 hours of sleep per night are 1.7 times more likely to get injured than teens that sleep more than 8 hours a night.

  1. Learn From Your Failures

Do not let your failures define who you are. During your time as a student-athlete, you will have plenty of failures whether it is on the field or in the classroom. It is important to take each failure and learn from it so that you don’t repeat it in the future.

Being a student-athlete can have its challenges, but with these 5 tips, you are sure to make the best of your time as one in college.

Adulting Uncategorized

5 Tips To Pass Your Cleaning Check This Semester

July 20, 2020

College is fantastic, isn’t it? Well, most of the experience is. There are things we could all do without, like the endless stacks of homework, the all-nighters that you need to pull to get ready for exams, and of course, the regular room inspections. Who wants to deal with that headache?

Fortunately, those who have gone before you have come up with some helpful tips for passing dorm room inspection, even when time is not on your side. Follow these helpful tips to pass your inspection with even the most discriminating resident advisor.

Don’t Panic! It Can Be Done!

Inspection of your dorm room can be stressful, but it is not a time for freaking out and stuffing things under your bed randomly. Believe it or not, they do check that as well. Take a deep breath, make some plans ahead of time to deep clean the bathroom and make your bed, and all will be well. 

Talk And Plan With Your Roommates

You are in this together, so why not plan to clean together? Divide and conquer; split up the workload and get everything ready for inspection at the same time so you don’t have to stress out when your advisor is knocking at your door. If for some reason your roommates are unwilling to work with you, let your advisor know ahead of time and get their support so that consequences don’t fall on your shoulders.

Get Supplies; Prepare For The Big Event

Don’t worry; the Center for Disease Control isn’t going to be at your doorstep anytime soon. You do have to pass certain sanitation requirements to keep your advisory staff happy though. Get the proper cleaning supplies for each area of your living space. For large carpet stains, using a device similar to commercial carpet cleaning machines might be the best way to take care of business. See what your advisor has available for use so that you don’t have to spend too much out of your own pocket to get the job done. Scrub, polish, and be proud of a job well done!

If You Have Contraband, Get Rid Of It!

If you have anything that is against your contract, you should probably have never gotten it or never signed the contract. However, it’s too late to go back in time, so you must get rid of it as soon as possible. Depending on what the contraband is, you may need to deep clean even more to get rid of the evidence of your violation of contract. For example, if you aren’t allowed to have pets but have had a dog for the past few months, it’s going to take some time and effort to get rid of all the dog hair and the dog smell. For future contracts, make sure you follow them exactly.

Once It’s Clean, Keep It That Way

Why do a marathon cleaning session once per semester if you can keep it tidy by picking up after yourself on a regular basis? Make cleaning a regular occurrence, and you’ll save yourself valuable time and energy when periodic inspections come around again. From time to time, advisors are asked to do spontaneous dorm room checks to ensure that students are living in compliance with campus and school law. Keep your affairs in order, and you’ll never be caught in a situation where you have to explain your personal habits or cleanliness to other school staff members.

Your dorm is your home for the length of your tenure at school, and like it or not, it does reflect on you and the kind of person that you are. You are setting up valuable habits for the future care of a home and possessions; maintaining a tidy space now will ensure your success with bigger responsibilities later on. 

Grab your gloves, get your brush, and start scrubbing! Celebrate your unique space, and know that you are learning a lot in the process of being accountable to others and keeping a clean environment for everyone.

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.

Adulting Uncategorized

Why You Need College Renters Insurance

July 13, 2020

As you start to prepare for the new semester, there is always something new around the corner that you forgot to think about when heading off to college. Did you pack enough clothes? Do you have your laptop and smartphone? Shower caddy? Dorm bedding?

These might make the top of your move-in list, but don’t forget to add renters insurance! GradGuard makes getting renters insurance easy and eliminates the hassle of understanding your policy or wondering if something is covered.

Our policy perks include:

  • Worldwide personal property coverage
  • Protection against the theft of electronics
  • Replacement cost value
  • Low deductibles
  • No credit score or cosigner required when purchasing

Not only do we protect your stuff, but we protect the residence you are living at with our liability coverage. Ever set off a sprinkler system in your residence hall? We sure hope not! But if in the event it happens, we are there to protect you.

Watch the video below to see why renters insurance is important for college students:

You can learn more about the protection we offer by visiting our website. Remember, we sell policies for both on-campus and off-campus housing; so even if you aren’t living in the dorms this year, be sure you take us with you.

Safety Uncategorized

Top 3 Reasons College Tuition Insurance Is a Smart Decision

July 13, 2020

When college families and their students are discussing college, the topic of money always comes up in the conversation. For good reason too! Did you know that the combination of tuition, fees, and room and board charges average between $20,000-$50,000 a year?

For many college families, the expense of a higher education is one of the largest investments they will make. Since there is so much money at stake, we suggest that college parents make a plan in case their student is forced to withdraw from school due to severe injury or illness. Of course, if you are one of the few families out there that can afford to lose your large investment, then tuition insurance may not be necessarily needed for you.

However, for most of the twenty million college students and their families, the financial loss of an entire college semester is a burden big enough to break the bank. As a result, college families are smart to consider the purchase of tuition insurance prior to the start of the school semester.

3 Reasons Tuition Insurance is a Smart Decision

  1. If you can’t afford to lose the tuition paid for a semester at school – Tuition insurance can provide up to 100% refund of your expenses in the instance that a student gets severely ill or injured and needs to completely withdraw from the university due to a covered reason.
  2. If your school does not provide a 100% refund – Do you know what your school’s refund policy is? A majority of school refund policies do not extend beyond the fifth week of the semester, and many don’t refund the full cost after the first week of classes. Be sure to check with your school to see what their refund policy is so you can see how much of your money is at risk.
  3. If you have additional academic expenses – Even if the school does provide you with a 100% refund for tuition, most schools do not refund academic fees or student housing. Many tuition insurance plans can provide coverage for academic fees and student housing in addition to tuition.

Student health incidents like illnesses, accidents, and mental health conditions happen frequently, even to young and healthy college students. The good news is that college families can protect their investment by purchasing tuition insurance! Visit our website at www.gradguard.com/tuition to see the plans available on your campus!

Health Uncategorized

How To Incorporate Meditation Into Your Routine

July 2, 2020

Meditation is a great tool that allows students to destress and integrate moments of stillness into their everyday routines. It may feel intimidating to start a meditation practice, but you do not need to meditate for long periods of time or have a completely blank mind to be meditating correctly. Meditation can become a part of your day in subtle ways that will make a big difference. Here are some examples of ways you can integrate meditation into your daily routine. 

  1. Meditation Apps

If you have an interest in meditation you have likely heard of apps such as Headspace and Calm. These apps provide both short and longer meditations that will meet you where you are comfortable. Guided meditation is used by both new and seasoned meditators. It can be helpful to be guided through the process of meditation to maximize the time you are setting aside. 

  1. Enjoy your food

Mediation is not all about breathing. You are able to find mindfulness when setting aside time to be present and engage your senses. The time you spend eating can be utilized to create a moment of stillness in your routine. If you set aside a moment to eat one of your meals alone without any distractions you can more fully focus on the taste of what you are eating. 

  1. Take time to breathe during your chores

As a busy student, you may not have time to set aside time for meditation. A lack of time does not have to stop you from starting a meditation practice. You can meditate in simple ways like when you are walking to your next class, when you are doing the dishes, or even brushing your teeth. As long as you are being mindful of your task, there are so many possibilities for moments of meditation.

  1. Listen to music

Music can have a great impact on your state of mind. It can be valuable to take time to listen to soothing music and calm yourself. If you are feeling anxious over an upcoming exam or any other troubles, listening to music can quickly help to regulate your mood. 

  1. Mindful exercise 

Exercise is a great way to put aside time to center yourself and get in touch with your body and mind. Yoga is one form of exercise that emphasizes focusing on breath and stillness. Other forms of exercise such as strength training and cardio also include a focus on the breath and your body’s movement. You can also see what fitness resources are available at your school. There are also many virtual workouts available for free on apps such as Nike Training Club and on youtube. 

Meditation does not need to feel unattainable. You do not need to go all-in and meditate for 30 minutes away in total silence. Small moments of mindfulness add up and can improve your overall well being. Life as a student can be overwhelming so it is important to know the best ways for you to take care of yourself both physically and mentally.