Browsing Tag

fun

Health Other

The Best Spotify Playlists for Students

October 7, 2019

We all like that rhythm and blues, right? Whether it’s studying, walking to class, or working out at the gym, having the right tunes is essential to any college student depending on your mood and activity! Here are a few of our favorite playlists on Spotify that are perfect for students!

Lo-Fi Beats

This playlist is perfect for the student that needs a little noise to study but doesn’t need the distraction of actual voices singing. Lo-Fi Beats adds that little something to your ears to drown out other things around you and helps you chill out and focus a little more. Other playlists like this one include Lo-Fi Cafe, Study Beats, and Sunny Beats.

Headbanger Halloween

Now, don’t get wrapped up in the title of this one. It’s perfect for workouts, hangouts, or the Halloween party you said you weren’t planning to throw this year. Filled with upbeat tunes with a “creepy” undertone or lyrics. This is the perfect playlist for fall! Don’t disregard it as it will bring up your spirits and get yourself into that spooky fall mindset.

Mellow Drive

This is a go-to for anyone who thrives on those late 90’s-early 2000’s classics; lot’s of Matchbox Twenty, Train, and Jack Johnson. This could be a good station for some light studying or walking to class on-campus. It picks up your spirits and lightens your mood, but be careful, you will probably end up singing out loud.

Your Daily Drive

If you commute to school, this is definitely one you want to look into. This is a station that is completely catered towards you and is handpicked for your taste in tunes. It is a completion of the music you like on Spotify, combined with news stories to keep you up to date with what is going on in the world. If you commute to school via car, bus, or train, this is a good one to help pass the time.

Confidence Boost

The ultimate playlist for the gym or a run around campus is Confidence Boost! Filled with upbeat songs to keep you motivated and going, this playlist is ideal for anyone needing that instant pick me up. You will be belting at the top of your lungs to hits from Kelly Clarkson, Pink!, and of course, Lizzo. Dance your way around the gym with this playlist and definitely give your confidence the boost that it needs.

Well, there you have it! Five playlists that are perfect for students depending on your mood or activity. Be sure to follow them now and it will surely be music to your ears. Pun intended.

Health Other

How to Fulfill Your Dog Fix On-Campus

July 30, 2019

It can be difficult saying goodbye to your childhood dog when leaving for college. When you are moved into a dorm room you may feel a longing to spend time with a furry friend. As a college student, there are a few different ways that you can go about finding some canine companions on campus.

Hang out in outside common areas or a local park

Although you may not have a dog on campus, there are probably many students and professors on campus who do. If you spend time outside in common areas on campus, you are likely to see dogs being walked or playing with their owners. It is important to always ask the owner before petting the dog and to also make sure it is not a service animal. If you do not see many dogs on campus you can also check out a local park. 

Keep an ear out for any therapy dog events on campus

Many universities are now hosting programs where therapy dogs are brought in to help relieve stress around midterms and finals. Universities such as Kent State, Seattle University, Tufts University, and New York University hold events that provide students the chance to destress with therapy dogs. These programs have been successful and are becoming increasingly popular on college campuses. 

Volunteer at a local dog shelter

A great way to get your dog fix and also do some good is volunteering at your local dog shelter. Animal shelters are always looking for new volunteers and it’s likely that there is one near your campus. You can search for opportunities near you and check to see if your school provides opportunities to volunteer (you might even get class credit). 

Skype with your dog back home

This may seem a little silly, but Skype and Facetime are great ways to connect with family and friends so why not skype with your dog? Next time you are talking to your family, have them grab the dog and have a little face to face time with your favorite pooch. 

Dogs can bring so much joy to your day and there is no need to have a dogless college experience. If you are missing your dog back home, follow these tips from GradGuard to brighten your day and de-stress.

Other Transition

Top 5 Things to Buy for Your First Apartment After Graduation

June 13, 2019

Sure, you had a bunch of stuff to take home from your college residence after graduation. But now that it’s been a couple months and you’re getting ready to rent a place of your own, things are starting to look a little drab and that stain from when your roommate spilled their dinner on your rug isn’t going to go away.

Whether you’re starting your first job or pursuing another degree, college graduation is an important life transition that should be treated and celebrated as such. Reward yourself for all of your hard work and start accumulating a collection of adult-worthy home goods with the top five things to buy for your first apartment after graduation.

New Sofa

Your college sofa probably won’t withstand the test of time. Not to mention all of the dust, bacteria and other random substances that have built up. Just think about all of the people you have entertained, allowed to sleep on or all the meals you have devoured on that couch.

It’s definitely time for an upgrade; not only for your newly developed value in the home but also for sanitary reasons. Keep things affordable by looking for a sofa from a discount furniture store.

A/C Unit

Sometimes, apartment rentals don’t always come with optimal air conditioning. Don’t endure the heat this upcoming summer as it could have negative impacts on your sleep patterns, in turn affecting your career or school performance. Consider browsing popular second-hand sites or even Facebook marketplace for A/C units that are much cheaper than store-bought options yet are still completely functional.

Office Desk

Having a dedicated workspace is vital no matter what path you take after graduation. Resist the urge to get things done from the comfort of your bed especially if you end up working remotely.

Instead, purchase an effective office desk where you can increase your productivity one assignment at a time. Explore styles that offer different amenities, like drawers or shelving to accommodate still useful college textbooks or reading materials.

Smart TV

With all of the popular new technology being rolled out, there’s a huge selection to choose from. Smart TVs come with all sorts of functions to integrate any interests you may have. Although 24-hour streaming binges of the latest and greatest show aren’t usually recommended during the week, there’s also the opportunity to bump some Beethoven for an amazing study or work session.

A Nice Frame

Finally, invest in a nice frame to hold your college diploma and display it proudly! You worked hard for this achievement and it’s time to show it off. If your diploma doesn’t always remind you of this impressive undertaking, your student loan payments certainly will.

For more tips on student life, paying for college and life after college, check out the GradGuard blog. And, of course, remember to get renters insurance for your new apartment! GradGuard offers coverage for students even after they graduate. Visit our website for a quote for your new apartment today!

Other Student Life

Ways to Keep Your Dorm Warm and Cozy This Winter

January 22, 2019

With the winter chill freezing our bones on our walks around campus, the best part about coming back to your residence is feeling cozy and warm with the decor around your room! Here are a few ways you can keep toasty and feel nice and comfy in your dorm room this winter.

Hang Christmas Lights

That overhead lighting is less than stellar most of the time. However, hanging a strand or two of Christmas lights gives your dorm a completely different feel! The warm, staggered lighting is easier on the eyes and great for watching movies, reading a book, or listening to music.

Make Warm Drinks

Using your microwave or that new Keurig you got for the holidays makes for great hot drinks such as cider, tea, coffee, and hot chocolate! Wander around the grocery aisles and find something that really speaks to you and use your favorite mug to warm your insides after a cold day of walking around campus.

Get a Space Heater

Sometimes the dorm heater is not all it’s cracked up to be. Getting a small space heater can help add a little extra warmth to your small space! Be sure to plug it directly into the wall instead of a surge protector and turn it off when you leave for any reason, but it is a perfect addition to keep you warm on frigid days.

Invest in Fuzzy Slippers or Socks

Keeping your feet warm can make all the difference during the winter! Get yourself a few pairs of thick fuzzy socks and some new slippers to keep your feet happy this winter. Slip them on right when you get back to your dorm and you surely won’t regret it!

Hopefully, these things will keep you toastier as the winter keeps on keepin’ on. Spring is just around the corner so there is light at the end of the tunnel, but until then, stay warm with these tips from GradGuard!

Other Student Life

Podcast Pros and 7 Suggestions for Students

January 7, 2019

Universities and colleges realize that investing in new technology saves costs on textbooks and allows them to provide more effective education. Podcasting allows people to get new information while doing virtually anything: driving, jogging, cooking, etc. Thus, there’s no surprise podcasting gains popularity among people who don’t have a lot of time but want to consume educational content. For example, podcasts are popular among students, and the use of podcasting in educational institutions can significantly improve the learning practice.

Many colleges and universities that have already incorporated podcasts as a part of their education system note that this practice shows positive results. The main advantage of podcasts is that they are easy to create and to consume.

Why Listen to Podcasts?

First, podcasting attracts attention. Most students would more likely listen to a 30-minute episode of a podcast than read an article for the same 30 minutes. This also applies to video content: videos, as well as text, require us to focus on the content, avoiding distractions. Podcasting allows you to get new information when otherwise you would just waste time.

Another advantage of podcasting is its availability. Brenda Frank, a research writer at College-Writers, explains: “Students can access podcasts easily, any time they want. Every smartphone supports numerous podcast subscription apps. Users can download new episodes automatically, wherever they want.” Here are a few existing podcasts that will be appreciated by students and anyone who is interested in learning something new.

Top 7 Podcasts for Students

1. Stuff You Should Know

Hosts Chuck and Josh talk about things you, probably, don’t know. Perhaps, you would never think of learning this information, however, it will certainly help you start some interesting conversations.

2. TED Talks

Most students like TED Talks videos and often repost them on social media. However, you can also enjoy TED Talks in the audio format. Listen to experts from various areas, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and respected authors while doing anything you want.

3. Rationally Speaking

This podcast is devoted to the topics associated with rationality, heuristics, and cognitive science. Here you can learn more about why we need to be rational, how biases work, what is utilitarianism, and a lot more.

4. College Info Geek

You are unlikely to find a more college-centered podcast than this one. It provides students with useful tips on how to study effectively, how to be productive, how to deliver speeches, etc.

5. Hardcore History

Every episode of this podcast is a well-researched and well-produced show. The most recent episodes are almost five hours long, which makes them similar to audiobooks. This podcast covers a range of topics, from the Mongol Empire to the Cuban Missile Crisis.

6. ScriFri

This podcast covers a variety of scientific topics. Sometimes, you can also hear interesting guests, such as Elon Musk or Sylvia Earle.

7. The Naked Scientists

If you are looking for simple explanations of complex topics, this podcast is a great choice. Here you can get a basic understanding of various scientific concepts even without a solid background in these areas.

Podcasts are easy to access, and you can find podcasts on virtually any topic, which makes them a great solution for students from various areas of study. Just plug in your headphones and learn new interesting facts while doing whatever you like. Remember, GradGuard is here for you this semester with all of your motivational posts and college hacks! Follow us on social media to stay in the loop.


Ester Brierley is a QA Engineer in a software outsourcing company and a competent virtual assistant for College Writers. Adores researching cutting-edge digital trends and sharing them in her writing pieces as a seasoned content creator for many websites. Follow her on Twitter.

Health Other

Achievable Resolutions for the New Year

December 31, 2018

As yet another year comes to a close, it is time to reflect on and remember the last 12 months. You remember your milestones, your proudest achievements, and probably a few failures. Think back to December 31st of last year… Did you make any resolutions? Did you stick to them? Did your goals shift as the year went on? The answer is probably yes to all of those things and that’s okay! Life is all about how you handle Plan B, but it’s nice to have some ideas in mind for how you want things to go. Here are a few simple and achievable goals you can set for yourself in the new year!

Train For And Run A Race

Whether this means a 5K or a full marathon, training for/running a race for distance is a huge accomplishment no matter your age. There are so many different programs you can follow to cross that finish line and get that medal; not to mention running is a great mind-numbing activity that helps relieve a lot of stress for college students. Try a Couch to 5k plan or even a marathon schedule if you’re feeling adventurous! Also, so many races are fun and exciting! For example, there are Monster Runs, winery races, and of course the Rock’n’Roll Series! Remember, running is 80% mental and 20% physical. If you think you can, you’re right; if you think you can’t, you’re right.

Read More

Reading more is both simple and beneficial. It doesn’t matter if you are reading the next great American novel or the newest Marvel comic, as long as you are giving your brain a new kind of workout. Heck, even turn on the subtitles of the current video game you are playing for a different twist. I’d recommend doing the first resolution in tandem with this one and downloading audiobooks! Get yourself something you want to read/learn more about, download the audiobook, then only listen to it when you are training! Believe it or not, this helps a lot. It’s a win/win for you to workout your brain and your body! We suggest some of these books for college student reading.

Join A New Club

This one can be a bit daunting to those who are not keen on social events, but it is basic enough that anyone can do it. Everyone has hobbies right? Why not join a group of people who have the same hobbies as you! Universities have dozens of clubs and organizations of all kinds for students to take part in. Don’t be afraid to join a club for a hobby that is not currently active for you either; maybe you will find a new passion to join you in the new year.

Vow To Do Something More Or Better

Here I am referring to just making simple notes to do something a little more or a little better. For example, doing the dishes or keeping your apartment clean. Vowing to spend more time with your friends and less time watching Netflix by yourself. Maybe you want to rekindle a relationship with an old friend or family member. Anything that is going to just be something you can improve on or do more of which you think is going to help you within your daily life.

The key here is to set yourself up for success and set obtainable goals and not ones that are so far out there that you won’t stand a snowballs chance in H-E-Double Hockey Sticks of accomplishing. Always remember that this is a new year and you never know what is coming for you! Stay happy, healthy, and safe with these tips from GradGuard to set some new resolutions.

Health Other

7 Tips on Striking the Perfect School-Life Balance

December 28, 2018

Striking the perfect school-life balance is one of the most challenging aspects of student life. Managing your academic and social life properly ensures focusing on your education and at the same time focusing on your mind and other activities that make you happy. This is a valuable skill that you’ll need long after you finish college to obtain enjoyment and fulfillment in your life.

Manage Your Time Well

Get a paper or electronic planner that will help you organize your time by days and weeks. It’s crucial to plan your schedule and consciously decide on what activities and people you’ll spend your time. Make sure you write down all the tasks you need to get done, but also save time for your family, friends, and exercising.

Set Your Goals

As Tony Robbins says: “Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” Therefore, take some time to think about the things you want to achieve or maintain. It can be getting an A, finding a part-time job or anything else that matters to you. Just make sure you break your goal into smaller, actionable steps as daily, weekly and monthly objectives.

Shuffle Your {riorities

Consider which of your goals and plans have the highest urgency and importance every semester. Those are the tasks you should be focused on the most to get them done first because they will have the most significant impact on your college life. Whatever your current priority is, get it done before anything else.

Learn To Say No

Establishing some boundaries and learning to say no is important for striking school-life balance. This means that sometimes you’ll need to skip parties, club meetings and other events around campus that may interfere with your planned schedule. Remember that this is a small sacrifice for accomplishing your greater achievements.

Be A High Achiever, Not A Perfectionist

Perfectionism leads to anxiety, lack of motivation, low self-esteem, and procrastination. Therefore set high, but achievable standards. Don’t forget to enjoy the whole process, not just the final result. Likewise, have a positive attitude toward constructive feedback, embrace it and consider mistakes as an excellent opportunity to learn and grow.

Lead A Healthy Life

If your body isn’t in good shape mentally and physically, you won’t be able to face all the challenges of student life well. Therefore, take care of yourself by sleeping at least seven hours per night, exercising three times a week and eating healthy meals regularly. Your health should be your number one priority, so make time for yourself.

Cut Yourself Some Slack

You’re only human, so don’t be so hard on yourself. Reward yourself for achieving your goals or good results. Treat yourself with a tasty dinner or a day trip out of town. Also, make time to enjoy family and friends, read non-academic books, watch a movie, or other activities that make you happy and energized.

Start by applying at least one of these strategies and improve your school-life balance! And don’t forget to check out GradGuard for all of your Tuesday Tips and other college hacks!

Serena Dorf is an enthusiastic content writer at EssayOnTime. She is passionate about writing, personal development, psychology, and productivity. In her free time, she is reading classic American literature and learning Swedish. Feel free to connect with her on Twitter

Other Student Life

Halloween Tricks and Treats

October 30, 2018

As Halloween approaches (arguably the best time of the year) there are always fun crafts and treats that can be done! Here are a few suggestions from the GradGuard team to have a fun and safe Halloween!

Ghosts in the Graveyard

Always a fun no-bake dessert! Get yourself some vanilla pudding, Oreo cookies (look for the tombstone Halloween ones!), gummy worms, and some Ghost Peeps and you are set to make this fun Halloween treat for your whole floor! Just start by following the instructions on the instant pudding and put it in a glass/metal pan to chill in the fridge. Then crush up some Oreos and cover the top of the top of the pudding with the crumbs to create a “dirt” effect. Once that is completed, just add the ghost Peeps, gummy worms, and Tombstone Oreo cookies to make your own creepy, delicious design. Definitely a Halloween favorite!

Roasting Pumpkin Seeds

Everyone knows this one! Sometimes the best part of having to carve a pumpkin is getting those yummy seeds! Once you finish gutting your pumpkin, be sure to clean the seeds and place them on a cookie sheet covered with foil. Once they’ve had a chance to dry (3-4 hours) you’re welcome to add a few spices and pop them in the oven for about 45 minutes at 300 degrees! This is a great, healthy snack for all diets and eating lifestyles! Not to mention they are perfect for the fall weather.

Making Gingerbread “Haunted” Houses

This could be a good one for those that are already in the Holiday spirit but aren’t ready to bust out the Christmas lights yet. Start with your favorite Gingerbread mix/premade cookie squares that you can find at the store, then load up on all of the funky fixings that you can find (gummy worms, gummy hands, candy eyeballs, candy spiders/bones, etc.) and go to town! Build your structure then add all of the fun additions that you picked out. You can use your favorite frosting as “glue” to add on the treats and keep everything together. This is a fun tradition you can start with your family or friends!

Witchy Apple Heads

Witchy apple heads are a cute craft that is simple, yet a little more time-consuming. Start with shaving an apple of the skin, then carve your own funky face into it. It can be scary, silly, or simple and then insert a popsicle stick in the bottom of it and leave it on a paper plate to dry. Give it a few days to wilt and become really wrinkly before adding your own artsy flare to it! Once the apple is dried, you can give it a witch hat, some yarn hair, a cloak, and maybe a little witches broom. This is not one to be eaten, but a cute little centerpiece for your coffee table.

As the witching hour approaches, put on a scary movie or podcast and gather your friends to create something cute this Halloween season! Remember, GradGuard is spooky this week! Be sure to check us out for fun Halloween posts!

Adulting Other

Your Vacation is Awaiting! Let’s Get Packing!

July 17, 2018

Good news students, it’s still summertime! Before the next semester starts to slowly creep up on you,  go ahead and reward yourself with a relaxing but also adventuresome vacation. After all, you did work extremely hard for that GPA, and you deserve to forget you’re a college student for just a moment and enjoy a well-earned break away from campus.

Whether you’re staying for a few weeks in another country or just going to Cali for the weekend, it’s always wise to pack the essential items that you know you’re going to need on a day-to-day basis. 

However, that’s easier said than done. How nice would it be if you can just magically memorize everything that you need to bring with you on the day of your trip? As a college student, you’re probably used to stuffing everything in your brain at the last minute. For a vacation, this can be a tough thing to accomplish unless you’re extremely low-maintenance where food and water are all you need to survive on a who-knows-how-long getaway.

For those who need a little more than just the essentials to survive, there’s an effective way to make sure that you will have everything you need so that your brain is roaming free and your body is at its most relaxed stage while you’re on your long-awaited vacation.

One method that works wonders is to re-enact your typical day in your head from the moment you wake up until the moment when you’re ready to lay down on your bed and call it a night.

After taking a minute to really think about your daily routine,  a typical day might look something like below:

 

                           Day activities            Things to pack
Waking Up  Your favorite pillow (especially if it’s a road trip).
Take a drink of water Your favorite reusable bottle. Hydro Flask is an amazing option as it’s designed to keep your drink hot or cold all day and helps create a more sustainable world. 
Brush teeth Your toothbrush, toothpaste, and mouthwash.
Morning skin care routine Your favorite face wash, toner, serum, moisturizer, and most importantly, sunscreen, and more.
Breakfast For those who don’t want to spend money every day on breakfast while on vacation, bring a few food items from home that are not easily perishable, such as breakfast bars, instant oatmeal, ready-to-eat pancakes and French toast, and dried fruit (dried mango slices are so yummy!).
Outing activities Plan out your outfit accordingly, make sure to check the weather of your destination before the trip.

Cold weather: fuzzy socks, scarf, gloves, earmuffs, jackets, sweaters, long pants, a beanie, etc.

Hot weather: sunglasses, summer shoes (sandals, flip-flops, etc.), shorts, tank tops, swim trunks,  sundresses, anything with thin and breathable fabrics will do.

A few miscellaneous things that are good to bring include: hand sanitizer, tissues, and wet wipes. 

             Activities before bed                     Things to pack
Shower Your favorite body wash, shampoo, and conditioner.  Don’t forget the loofah!

*A great recommendation is the 18-in-1 Dr. Bronner Pure Castile soap, as it can be used for many purposes and saves you tons of spaces in your luggage.

Brush teeth Same as in the morning
Evening skincare routine Should be similar to the morning routine. Bring any additional products you might need.
Reading (optional) If you’re a reader, bring a Kindle or a couple of your favorite books along with a book reading light. 
Allergy prevention If you know you’re susceptible to allergies, pack allergy pills as a change in weather can cause severe sneezing and coughing. Better safe than sorry!
Bedtime Bring an extra blanket if your destination has cold weather, and an extra pillow won’t hurt 🙂

Of course, this is just a general list of what an average college student would typically need while on vacation, but please pack accordingly based on your own wants and needs as everyone is different.

Apart from the above list, the most important thing of all is to stay safe while you travel. To ensure that you and your belongings are protected no matter where you go, GradGuard Renters Insurance offers a worldwide (yes that’s right, worldwide) coverage that will protect college students and young adults from unpredictable mishaps such as theft and vandalization that could happen while on vacation.  

With that said, have a safe and fun-packed vacation!