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Student Life

7 Ways to Start a New Semester Off Right

January 14, 2022

The start of a new semester tends to come with a lot on the to-do list. Don’t let that put you off! Knowing how to kick-start a new term can really impact all aspects of your time at school. Whether it’s your first semester or your last, preparing yourself to begin the new term is important so you can be successful. 

Check out this list with the top 7 ways to help you start this semester off on the right foot.

1. Staying organized is key

Getting organized and staying organized can be hard, but it can help your course work, as well as your workflow at the start of a new semester, and will have tremendous benefits to your stress levels. There are many amazing online organization tools and apps such as Goodnotes, MyHomework, Google Workspace or even a physical calendar that can keep all of your assignments and notes in one place. You can file your work into separate folders based on the class or sections, color-coding, and highlighting the most important stuff. With so many classes being online or hybrid, many professors are using slideshows during lectures. You should get in a habit of asking them to send you a copy so you can look back while studying. It may also be posted online where you submit assignments. Also, staying on top of your calendar and updating it with due dates and important events will help you to stay ahead of schedule. Being organized with your time and schedule will keep you on task so you don’t procrastinate.

Pro Tip: Scan any important paper documents or notes to an online folder for later. This will help you avoid having to dig through mountains of notes and random sheets of paper again. 

2. Making campus your home away from home

At the start of a new semester, most students will be either returning to campus or are heading there for the very first time. Either way, this new address, new roommate, or new city will be your home away from home. At first, this can seem pretty overwhelming but you can bet everyone is as nervous as you when heading to campus. As you build friendships and get deeper into your course work, heading back to campus will feel like putting on your favorite comfy sweatshirt. It will feel natural and familiar after a while. You will probably even miss it while you are away!

Pro Tip: Bring something that reminds you of home to have if you get homesick!

3. Stay informed about what’s happening on campus

With college comes a whole lot of terms you’ve never heard of before, such as enrollment, course catalog, exam registration, and withdrawals.

It can be pretty daunting when:

a) You’re not really sure what you’re supposed to do,

b) Where you need to be,

c) And when you should be doing it.

One thing that can save you the added stress of college life is downloading any available calendars or information from your university’s or college’s website before the new semester starts. It could be mid-terms or finals schedules and the campus map, or even looking up groups or clubs on social media so you can connect with other students at your school about classes, lectures, and registration times.

Pro Tip: Note your drop, withdraw, and refund policies before classes start. Consider purchasing GradGuard’s Tuition Insurance to provide a reimbursement should you withdraw for a covered illness or injury at any time during the semester.

4. Keep Your Student ID With You at All Times

At last, a shiny new student card with your name and photo all over it! It’s proof that you’re now a member of your dream school. Not only will your student ID be your badge to get access to your dorm, campus buildings, and the library, it is also how you may pay for meals and snacks in the student union. Some classes even use your student ID card or your student number for attendance. You’ll get your card once you’ve enrolled and it’ll stay with you until your time at university is over. Just try not to lose it or get it stolen. If it is however,  you can check with your student services to get a replacement card, though it will cost you some money.

Pro Tip: Did you know your student ID can also save you money? Check out student discounts on stuff such as entertainment, event tickets, tech, clothing and more!

5. Books, Books, and, YES, more Books!

Do college classes even require textbooks anymore? Yes, they actually do and many online ones require them as well! Course books and other reading material will be your lifeline during your time in college. You can stay one step ahead of any stress by purchasing your books a few weeks before your new semester starts. Textbooks are not all created equal and some can be quite costly, so be on the lookout for what you need at a second-hand bookstore or in the used section. Some classes will require that you purchase a digital version of the book or an online access code. Unfortunately, these can not be usually be purchased secondhand and are often some of the most expensive materials needed for class.

Pro Tip: Before you buy a new or even used book, see if the bookstore allows rentals. Many times, you can rent these for a fraction of the purchase price AND you can still highlight and take notes. Win-win!

6. Managing your time

Life in college can be vastly different than anything in your life up to this point. The rigid structure of high school and bell schedules is long gone. From managing your personal time to sleep, do chores, and hangout with friends, to going to class, studying, and doing other assignments, it can be hard not to get overwhelmed!

If you’re able to master the art of managing your time for studying, work, and your personal life early on in the semester you will feel better come the end of the semester and things get even more crazy. Dedicating the right amount of time to your education, work commitments, socializing, and of course, just for yourself is critical and will ensure you get the most out of each. Sure, your student years will involve social events with your friends, but at the end of the day it’s all about balance. Tipping the scales too far to one side can have dramatic effects on the other. Try a few different things to find what works for you to make sure that you are leaving enough time for all the important things in you life, but sometimes you might just have to say “no”.

Pro Tip: Try to pick your classes on block days so other days are left open for studying, a part-time job, or fun stuff. For example, look for classes on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays only, leaving you able to do other things on Tuesdays and Thursdays!

7. Remember to have fun!

You’ve probably heard it a million times before, but your time in college will turn out to be some of the best years of your life. Of course, there are exams, essays, and lots of homework, but studying and diving deep into a major you love will turn out to be so much better than you thought. Knowledge is power and can open so many doors for you in the future, so soak it up while you can! You’ll meet people from all walks of life so make time to network straight away, join extracurricular activities, and share your passions with the others around you.

Health Student Life

Mental Health Tips for Neurodiverse College Students

January 8, 2022

Photo by Eliott Reyna on Unsplash

Neurodiversity describes the range of behavioral traits and brain function across the human population. The unique wiring of a neurodiverse person’s brain causes them to think, react, and learn differently. Autism, attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) are examples of neurodiverse conditions.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), one in every 54 kids gets diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. The rates of ADD and ADHD are even higher. So, in response to neurodiversity prevalence, the neurodiversity movement sparked to challenge the negative connotation of “learning disabilities.”

Neurodiverse college students can excel, especially with tweaks to teaching methods, daily self-care practices, and innovative academic tools.

Personal Strategies for Better Learning

Whether a student has neurodiverse tendencies or not, acclimating to a college campus can be challenging. For many young adults, a dormitory is the first place they’ve lived away from home.

Without parental guidance and a familiar routine, neurodiverse students may struggle with large lecture halls and the overall “hands-off” approach college professors tend to take. However, there are many tactics neurodiverse students can implement to get ahead of the curve.

A recent article by Affordable Colleges Online shares several apps that can help neurodiverse students manage stimuli, take notes, and more.

●  Task Management: For students with ADD, the iOS app 30/30 timer encourages students to work on one task for 30 minutes, break for 30 minutes, and repeat until complete. Another option is Google Play’s StayOnTask. This app also uses a timer that randomly reminds students to focus on the designated assignment.

●  Overstimulation: Meditating can help autistic college students cultivate calm in hectic environments. The app Headspace offers guided meditations suitable for all levels. Another great tool is The Miracle Modus app, which provides soothing images and sounds that help students recalibrate to the outside world.

●  Note Taking: When students upload a PDF, e-book, Word document, or PowerPoint to the app Natural Reader, it converts the material into audio. This is an excellent tool for those with dyslexia. On the other hand, the app OpenDyslexic incorporates a font style that helps dyslexic students navigate the reading process better.

Educator Influence

Professors and teachers also have a significant impact on the success of neurodiverse college students. By implementing a teaching style and classroom setting accessible to all learning types, students can gain the confidence to reach their full potential.

Universal Design is the official term for these accessible learning environments. Educators can transform their classrooms with the following methods.

●  Provide varied ways for students to showcase knowledge

●  Use more than one method for assessing students’ efforts

●  Make sure students have a clear understanding of expectations

●  Accommodate a range of learning styles

Self-Care

All-nighters before an exam, junk food consumption, and partying on a Tuesday may be typical in a college environment, but that doesn’t mean these behaviors are healthy. Since staying focused can already be a challenge for neurodiverse students, having a daily self-care routine can ensure academic success as well as physical and mental wellness.

The following tips can help neurodiverse college students get the most out of their university years.

●  Be wary of perfectionist tendencies; learn to let go once an assignment is complete

●  Keep track of daily tasks with an electronic calendar

●  Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep every night

●  Eat nourishing foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein

●  Move your body daily

Medical checkups can also fall to the wayside when young adults enroll in college. It can be especially tough to stay consistent with dental appointments. A study found that 9% of kids and adolescents fear the dentist. This negative association is also prevalent in neurodiverse people sensitive to drilling noises and other teeth-cleaning mechanisms. However, bi-annual teeth cleanings are imperative for overall health, so finding a coping mechanism for appointments will pay off in the long run.

The Future Is Bright

Like sociologist Judy Singer said in the 1990s, neurodiverse people are not disabled; their brains work differently than those of neurotypical people. With the right tools, teaching methods, and daily self-care practices, neurodiverse college students can contribute significantly to the world. 

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.

Health Student Life

Medical Appointments College Students Shouldn’t Put Off

December 28, 2021

When you’re in college, making medical appointments for preventative care probably isn’t high on your priority list. You’re young, healthy, and might not yet have health insurance to cover expensive medical bills

But, it’s important to understand that you’re not invincible or immune from certain things – even at your young age. 

Even in college, it’s important to receive regular care to ensure you stay healthy as you continue your journey into adulthood. Whether you’re new to setting a schedule for yourself or you’re just starting to take your health more seriously, let’s cover a few medical appointments you shouldn’t put off. 

Regular Dental Cleanings

It’s easy to ignore your oral health, even after college. But, now is the time to make it a priority and create a habit of seeing a dentist at least once a year. Regular cleanings typically don’t break the bank, and seeing your dentist annually can help you to avoid more expensive and painful procedures, like: 

  • Root canals
  • Extractions
  • Fillings
  • Gingivitis treatment

Your oral health is more linked to other areas of your overall wellness than you might realize. It’s not enough to brush your teeth twice a day anymore. Make a dental appointment as soon as possible, and your whole body will be better off because of it. 

Annual Checkups

Now is the time to establish a relationship with a primary care provider. By seeing a doctor annually, you can talk about any health concerns you might have. A doctor can also give you advice on how to take care of yourself properly, especially once they have an understanding of your family medical history. 

Many primary care providers will also regularly do blood work to monitor your health and stay on top of any changes that might occur from year to year. Things like blood pressure and cholesterol levels can be seen in lab results, and knowing where you might need to make changes to stay healthy is important. 

Wellness exams are designed to keep you healthy and reduce your risk of developing a serious medical condition. If you do end up having some kind of condition or illness, yearly checkups will make it easier to manage. A primary care provider will work with you on a treatment plan to keep you as healthy as possible. 

A good rule of thumb is to schedule an appointment with your primary care provider every year before school starts. It’s a great way to start the year out on the right foot, knowing you’re healthy. 

Additionally, women should make annual appointments with a gynecologist. College-aged women aren’t immune from certain types of cancer, including: 

  • Breast cancer
  • Endometrial cancer
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Cervical cancer

Yearly appointments with an OBGYN can screen for these and other potential issues, and ensure that your reproductive system is healthy. 

If you’ve been putting off medical appointments or simply haven’t been giving them much thought, now is the time to start. By scheduling regular check-ups now, you’re taking charge of your health at a young age, which will make it easier to stay strong and healthy as you get older. 

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.

Student Life

Here’s Why Every Student-Athlete Should Get a Part-Time Job

December 3, 2021

There are many benefits to being a student-athlete. You get to proudly represent your university while having access to your school’s exclusive training facilities and equipment. You form a bond with your fellow players and learn teamwork and sportsmanship. You also develop healthy habits, staying mentally and physically fit to excel in your performance. Many student-athletes also receive financial assistance to help fund their tuition, campus housing, and other school expenses.

However, it’s not all perks and glory. Being a student-athlete entails hard work, discipline, and commitment. You must meet all that is required of a student and an athlete, learning to effectively manage your time between classes and practices, as well as exams and athletic competitions.

Aside from practicing and training while maintaining your GPA, add finding a part-time job to your busy schedule. Even though you can now monetize your name, image, and likeness as a college athlete, getting a part-time job won’t just earn you some extra cash, it will also teach you real-life lessons as you transition to adulthood.

Here are some valuable things you can learn from getting a part-time job while balancing sports and studies.

The Importance of People Skills

As a student-athlete, you get to train with people who share the same interests and values. You know how to trust and communicate with each other on the court or on the field to achieve a common goal. 

However, when you land a part-time job, you will often find yourself working with individuals with different personalities and beliefs, with different goals and commitments. You might not even like some of these people and some of them might not like you. It could be a co-worker in a restaurant who feels your lack of experience is backing up service. Or a supervisor with instructions and criticisms you don’t always agree with.

But to do your job, you must learn to work with this team. You’ll have to learn how to effectively communicate with them. You need to actively listen, understand, and empathize to minimize miscommunication and conflicts, and instead build trust, rapport, and respect. You must also learn how to receive feedback constructively, without being reactive and defensive.

The ability to positively interact with others, despite having diverse interests and backgrounds, allows you to form effective working relationships and helps you succeed at work and in life.

The Power of a Positive Attitude

After a long week of class lectures, project deadlines, and rigorous training drills, the last thing you may want to do is report to your Saturday shift at a local coffee shop—especially after a customer got upset with you the last time for misspelling her name and for topping her frappe with whipped cream after she specifically told you not to.

Instead of dwelling on the mishaps, overcome these challenges by looking at things with optimism. Learn from your mistakes and aim to better yourself. If you focus too much on the negatives, you might prevent yourself from improving. So, instead of dreading another blunder, smile at your next customer and spell out his name before you scribble it on his cup. Then repeat his order to make sure you got it right.

When you make a habit of seeing the bright side of things, you can take on even the most challenging situations with a positive mindset and view mistakes and setbacks as opportunities to learn and become better.

The Goal of Financial Freedom

The average professional athlete earns over $50,000 a year, with the top earners making almost $90,000 annually. If you wake up tomorrow and get drafted as one of the youngest players in history—congratulations! For most student-athletes though, it may take several years longer before you get your big break.

Instead of sitting on the bench, working and earning your own money teaches you to appreciate the value of every dollar. You won’t have to rely on your parents for cash as you take the first step toward financial independence. You will learn how to properly manage your finances and build good credit as a student.

Earning money from a part-time job helps ensure you pay your monthly balance on time. Establishing good credit while you’re young teaches you to become more reliable and responsible and positively impacts your ability to get a job, utility services, better insurance rates, better housing options, and more.

Success in a Different Career

While there are nearly half a million NCAA student-athletes, a much lower number make it to pro after college. Like any big game, finding a job inside or outside of sports requires hard work, discipline, and a solid game plan. Taking on a part-time job while studying can improve your employment prospects and help you succeed in your future career, whether it’s on the sports field or in the corporate arena.

Working part-time as a student-athlete does not only teach you to manage your time, but you also get to find and develop your other strengths. You can try different career options. You can find a job in health and fitness as a coach or trainer. You can try the food and restaurant industry as a member of the wait staff. You can also consider online gigs and do freelance work as a social media manager, virtual assistant, online tutor, or graphic designer.

Final Word

Devoting even just a few hours a week over four years of college gives you hundreds of hours of shadowing or internship experience. This equips you with valuable knowledge and skills that can help you stand out in any career you choose.

Safety Student Life Transition

Finding Your First College Apartment: A Checklist

November 29, 2021

For many young people, moving into an off-campus college apartment is an exciting first step to independence. But before you can enjoy your newfound freedom, you have to find a suitable apartment and arrange the move.

Here’s our college apartment checklist to help make the process easier.

Finding the Right Apartment

Students need to consider more than just price and location when looking for a college apartment. You should also consider:

Distance

How close to campus do you want to be? If you have your own transportation, you could expand your search to neighborhoods further away, where you may find a better apartment at a lower price. 

Safety

If you will be walking or biking to and from campus, safety should be a top concern. How safe is the neighborhood and what security features does the apartment complex have?

College community

If you want to be part of the student social scene, then an apartment near campus would probably be ideal. If, however, you would prefer less social distractions, choose a quieter neighborhood.

Amenities

What type of amenities would make your life easier — laundry facilities, communal areas like pools or gyms, or nearby restaurants and shops?

Access to public transportation

If you don’t have your own transportation, find an apartment close to public transit so it’s easy to get around.

Pets

Would you like to bring your pet? Not all apartments allow pets and those that do are likely to have some rules around pets. In addition, you may want to look into getting renters insurance that covers pet-related incidents. Note that some policies restrict certain types of breeds, like Pit Bull Terriers and German Shepherds. 

Planning Your Finances 

You may dream of a trendy studio apartment in the heart of the city, but your budget may relegate you to a more affordable option a little farther away. Finances play a big role in where you eventually settle. But with some planning, you may be able to find a happy medium. 

First, crunch the numbers:

  • What is your budget for rent?
  • Are utilities included in the rent? 
  • Will you be paying extra for a parking bay or garage?
  • How much will your public transportation or vehicle running costs amount to? 
  • Will you be paying for car and renters insurance?

If the total costs are higher than your budget allows, there are ways you can make renting a college apartment more affordable.

  • Consider a roommate. This is a great way to cut costs, but choose wisely. Pick a roommate with a similar lifestyle and habits. Remember, a bad roommate who breaks the rules could get you kicked out of the apartment. 
  • Get a part-time job. You may not even need to leave your apartment — there are online jobs for students like freelance copywriting or teaching English online.  

Preparing to Move 

Once you’ve found the right apartment, it’s time to pack. The easiest way to do it is to pack by room, i.e. kitchen, bathroom, living room, office/study area. Label boxes clearly so that the movers can immediately put the boxes in the correct room, ready for you to unpack.  

Moving Day

Moving homes is one of life’s most stressful events. With a little planning and forethought, you can breeze through it.

  • Decide on whether to move yourself or hire a moving company. Weigh up cost-saving versus time-saving. Hiring a moving company is an extra cost but it may save time and be more convenient. There are also moving companies who specialize in helping students move at more affordable rates.
  • If you’ve decided to tackle the move yourself, gather some troops to help with the heavy lifting. Mom, dad and friends may be happy to help. As a thank you, treat them to some snacks and drinks in an end-of-moving-day party.
  • Be prepared emotionally. Moving day can be emotional, not just for your parents, but also for you. Don’t worry, though, mom and dad will always be a phone call away when you need them! 

Moving day doesn’t have to be stressful. Keep these tips in mind for a smooth move!

Student Life

7 Tips to Create the Perfect Study Environment

November 17, 2021

Many essential factors, both good and bad, contribute to a person’s academic success. However, looking at all the possible things that could go wrong won’t do you any good. You will create doubts and demotivate yourself.

Instead of thinking about things that could go wrong, be proactive in setting yourself up for success. The best way anyone can do this is to create an environment where they thrive as learners without any distractions.

People often overlook their study environment, but it can make a huge difference in how well you perform.

Stay organized

Being organized is crucial when it comes to studying. We’re not talking about the learning process itself. Sometimes it’s random, and you can learn with different techniques.

Start with cleaning up the clutter. Set the time when you will start learning and make sure that you don’t have any other obligations. Ensure you won’t be bothered by using headphones if you’re studying in a library or public place, or letting your roommates know not to disturb you.

Make your study environment optimal and organized. If you’re using a computer, consider getting different types of power cords that can help you hide all the wires and make your work area neat. Keep all your learning materials in a single place, and be prepared to start learning at any time.

Find a suitable study location

People study in all kinds of different places. No matter where you are studying, you need to feel comfortable without distractions. Consider studying in your bedroom, office, the library, a coffee shop, or a co-working space.

Some people can also learn in shared learning spaces, so think about these options as well. Once you find a spot you like, stick with it and create your routine around it. And remember, switching up your learning location can also be a good thing from time to time.

Keep your phone away

One of the biggest distractions today is the smartphone. Nearly everyone is used to being on their phones at any given moment during the day. We have a habit of looking at phones while drinking coffee, in bed, on the toilet, and so on.

It’s a very negative habit when it comes to studying. Reaching for your smartphone can not only disrupt your current learning process, but it will also likely occupy your mind with irrelevant information. Turn your phone to silent mode and if you have to, move it into another room. If you get notifications on your laptop or smart watch, remember to mute those as well!

Try music

There are many studies that explore the effects of music on our brains. Music can help us in so many different ways, and some people can even learn better with music. They use it as a tool to keep things fun and go through their lessons more easily.

Let’s face it when you’re doing something while having fun – it’s a lot easier. Many people say that music helps them, but there is also research that confirms the benefits of music for studying. Classical or jazz music can be nice to listen to when you’re in a good study zone. If you could handle lyrics and changing beats while you’re studying, try another genre!

Make it comfortable

Taking care of practical things like noise, distractions, and clutter is essential. However, the visual experience of your study environment is also significant. Decorating your learning space with pictures, flowers, lighting, furniture, and comfy pillows can make learning easier.

At the same time, make sure to get a comfortable chair and desk so you feel more inclined to use it. Studying from your bed or couch may sound nice at first, but it might be a little too comfortable and make you sleepy.

Avoid spending time in that space when you’re not studying

When you’re spending too much time in one room, you can start to feel drained, even when you’re not studying. Everyone needs a change of scenery, especially when they’ve been studying for several hours. If you want to feel comfortable in your environment, get out of it whenever you can.

Even while you’re studying, make sure to get up, stretch, and walk to your other room or even go outside. Getting the blood flowing even for a few minutes every 30 to 90 minutes can do a lot of good.

Get inspired

What are your goals, and what motivates you to study? These are the questions you need to ask yourself. Once you’ve figured that out, make sure to add posters, photos, desktop backgrounds, quotes, or anything else that inspires you to your study room. When you’re lacking drive or motivation, you can look at these inspirations in your study room and move forward.

With these seven tips, you can easily create a more enjoyable work environment where your knowledge will grow. However, don’t make it too comfortable so that you fall asleep while studying – it’s still a learning environment, not a gaming room.

BIO: Rebecca Grey is a passionate writer & guest blogger. She loves writing and sharing her knowledge mostly in the technology industry.

Student Life

Student Guide on How to Stop Overspending and Start Saving

November 11, 2021

Being a student is one of the most exciting phases of one’s life. Financially, this is the ideal time to experiment with your ideas and get a head start for adulthood. The challenge, though, is how to make ends meet with the limited resources you currently have. After all, just a night of overspending can lead to disastrous results down the line.

Fortunately, there are a lot of steps that you can practice to prevent overspending and learn more about personal financial management. In this article, we are going to share some of them with you, particularly those that we have already tried and tested for years:

1.  Make use of last year’s books.

According to Academic Matters, an average student spends more than $1,000 on books and other learning materials per year. While putting them to good use is the best way to make the most of your investment, there is another way to get (at least) some of your money back. Take good care of your textbooks because you can still resell them for a good price once the school year’s over. Check out your campus bookstore for buy-back programs, or sites such as Amazon or Chegg.

2.  Enjoy savings for this year’s books.

While we’re on the topic of textbook savings, you can use similar tactics for books you have yet to purchase. Look into buying used textbooks or renting them. Many times, you can still. write and highlight in books you rent, so it shouldn’t impact your study habits.

3.  Know your discounts.

Since we are already talking about Amazon, did you know that they have an Amazon Prime student program as well? This allows you to sign-up at half the price of their regular plan, take advantage of significant discounts, enjoy free food delivery, and more.

Meanwhile, Amazon is not the only company that offers discounts to students. Don’t forget other types of bonuses as well. For instance, groceries typically hold late-night discounts for perishable items that didn’t sell during the day. Take the time to find what’s available near you and you might be surprised how a little effort can stretch your dollars further.

4.  Plan your expenses and shop smart.

There are different types of budgeting systems but for students, we highly recommend starting with something simple like the envelope system. It won’t require any expense recording but it will make sure that you live within your means.

Don’t automatically assume that you need to buy everything as well. You will need a lot of things when you’re moving into you’re venturing out into the world for the first time, but don’t think that you would need to buy everything brand new.

There’s no shame in asking around whether your family and friends have some things that you might need just lying around unused, such as old pieces of furniture or kitchen appliances. Other items, like the power tools you’ll need to assemble your own furniture, can also be rented as needed.

We also recommend alternative methods such as point-of-need financing. You can use it to buy bigger educational-related expenses, like a new laptop or a printer. You might even need a small fridge or a microwave for your dorm room. This will allow you to get what you need and pay for them through smaller and more manageable monthly payments.

5.  Explore new interests.

Binge drinking, excessive partying, shopping, and even vaping are all hobbies that are not just irresponsible, they’re quite costly too. Instead, consider exploring fun and inexpensive hobbies!

For example, there are affordable musical instruments that you can start learning how to play. Getting a chess set is pretty cheap and you can spend your whole life contemplating on its 69,352,859,712,417 possibilities and still not master it.

Are you a fan of working out? There are campus gyms that offer free memberships for their students, teachers, even the alumni. The fun that comes with college parties can still be enjoyed, just not overdone!

6.  Take advantage of more affordable forms of entertainment.

A lot of campuses offer free (or really affordable) forms of entertainment such as movie nights, museum passes, and cultural shows. We also recommend skipping a costly cable package. Try a streaming service instead, like Netflix or Hulu. Amazon also offers Amazon Music and Prime Video as part of the student program we have featured earlier. Talk to your roommates and see if they’d split the cost on one or two streaming services for you to share.

In fact, when it comes to music, there really is no need to buy tracks these days. You can simply use free streaming services like Spotify or Pandora.

7.  Share food and space with your friends.

You can further pull down your monthly expenses by splitting the cost of your rent and utilities with a roommate. You can even plan your meals together and share grocery expenses. Splitting the responsibility of cooking and cleaning up is unbeatable!

8.  Review your life skills.

Speaking of cooking, it will save you a lot from eating and spending money on take out. We know how convenient it is, but it is financially smarter to just cook your own dinner rather than reaching for Uber Eats every other day. Save those splurge nights for really special occasions.

Riding a bike is another way to save money in college. Car payments, insurance, parking passes, and gas can really add up, especially if you are on a student budget. If you really need a car, you could rent one for the day or utilize a ride share service. But a bike should be enough if you live on campus or close by.

There are certainly other methods to save money as a student, but the ones we have mentioned above are good points that you can already start practicing. Good luck!

Adulting

How To Increase The Resale Value Of Your Car

November 4, 2021

Hardly anyone who buys a car expects to keep it forever. Many car owners choose to replace their vehicles as their needs change. For example, new parents might sell their roadster for a minivan; empty nesters relocating to a sunny state might sell their SUV for a convertible; and students leaving home for college might not need to bring their car to campus.

If you’re ready to sell your car from high school, here’s what you need to know to raise its resale value.

Questions to Ask Before Taking a Car to Campus

Most college campuses have all the amenities that students need — such as dining, entertainment, shopping and laundry facilities — within a few blocks of their dorms or apartments. Many students learn that they can get almost anywhere just by walking, biking or taking public transit.

For some college students, owning a car might be more trouble than it’s worth. Aside from buying gasoline and paying for insurance, students might get sticker shock when they learn how much they’ll need to pay to park a car that they barely use. Before you leave for college, be sure to investigate the campus parking arrangements.

Alternatives to Keeping a Car on Campus

If having a car on campus isn’t an option, there are usually alternative modes of transportation available. Municipal transportation systems usually offer bus routes from campus to popular destinations around town. Check the local transportation website to see if you can ride the bus or rail systems for a discounted student rate. Besides bus and rail service availability, you might not need a car on campus if:

·  A friend or roommate already owns a car

·  A bike or skateboard works just as well

·  Ride-sharing services are plentiful

After you weigh the pros and cons of keeping a car on campus, it might make more sense to sell the high school car before college begins.

Tips to Ensure Good Resale Value When Purchasing a Car

No matter when you decide to purchase or sell a vehicle, there are steps you can take to ensure you get the most money for it when it’s time to sell.

·  Purchase a car that’s a neutral color. A car that’s fire engine red or electric blue, although eye-catching, tends to draw more attention than the average person wants when behind the wheel.

·  Purchase a car with an automatic transmission rather than one with manual. Only 18% of Americans know how to drive a car with a stick shift.

·  Purchase an extended warranty for the vehicle.

·  Wash your car regularly to maintain the exterior paint. Damage from salt or other corrosives can occur whether you live in the snowy north or near the ocean.

·  Detail the interior of the car to prevent permanent stains or damage from ground-in sand, dirt or debris.

·  Protect your car from the elements. Covered parking is good; secured garage parking is even better.

·  Fix dents and scratches in the body and chips in the glass immediately, before they get worse. Sudden changes in air temperature can transform a tiny chip into fully cracked windshield.

For more tips to increase the resale value of your vehicle, check out this infographic.

AUTHOR BIO: Sam Combs is the founder for Chrysler Factory Warranty, an Internet-only provider of genuine factory-backed Chrysler Service Contracts. He has 18 years of experience in the industry and focuses on offering customers the same Chrysler coverage plan for less.

Career Student Life

5 Part Time Online Careers for College Students

November 1, 2021

School tuition is no joke. Some students need to take part-time jobs just to be able to make it through college. However, certain circumstances make it more difficult to work in person. If you’re a college student who wants to earn extra income from the comfort of your home or dorm, here are some part-time positions you can try.

Photo and video editing services

A lot of people out there are not so well-versed with editing photos and videos and would often find freelancers online who could work on one or two projects for them. If you know a thing or two about photo restoration, video editing for social media, and other editing tasks, you can work as a freelancer online. You don’t even have to invest much. You can sign up on free freelance job websites and use a free online video editor for your work.

Freelance writing

Online writers are in high demand. Businesses, professionals, and even independent creators all need written content to build and establish their online presence. There are websites like UpWork where you can sign up to find and bid for freelance writing projects. Just like photo and video editing, clients just provide a deadline so you work on your own schedule.

Online teaching

If you are quite knowledgeable about a subject, language, art, or musical instrument, then you can offer online lessons for a fee. You can do this independently or you could register at websites that offer tutorial services for students who need after-school assistance with specific subjects.

Stock photography

If you have a camera and can take pretty decent photos, you can consider selling some of your images online. Stock media is highly popular and people are willing to pay for photos they could use on their websites, ads, blogs, videos, magazines, brochures, and other digital or printed materials. Although the income probably won’t be consistent, you could earn enough to support your studies by putting out photos that are relevant to popular topics nowadays.

Graphic design or digital art

Digital creations are in demand, be it for personal or business use. You can work as a project-based graphic designer, creating brand logos, brochures, packaging design, and other visual concepts for companies, entrepreneurs, and organizations. If you are more interested in art, you can create digital artworks and sell prints of them online.

Starting your online career

An online part-time job can help you earn extra income for your college tuition. The great thing about working remotely is that you won’t have to spend money commuting to your workplace. If at all possible, find an online job that’s related to your current field of study. Not only will it help you financially, you will also gain a lot of experience while being able to learn more and hone your skills. Just make sure that you have a working computer, a stable internet connection, and the apps or tools that you need to help you work better and create impressive results. Good luck!

Student Life

Guide to Decorating Your Dorm Room (+ DIY Ideas)

October 29, 2021

If you’re headed to college, you probably know about all the expenses you’ll need to make, and decorating your room is one of them. 

Decorating a dorm room can be a fun activity, but it can be expensive. Fortunately, there’s a lot you can do to avoid spending all your savings on dorm room items

Why It’s Important to Decorate Your Dorm Room

  • Dorm rooms are often small, so you need to choose the right decorations to maximize all the space and make the room look larger.
  • If you have a roommate, using the right decorations will help you get more privacy.
  • You’ll likely spend much of your time in your dorm room, so it’s important to make it as cozy as possible.
  • Decorating your dorm room can be an exciting activity and can help you relax when first move there.

DIY Dorm Room Ideas

1. Create Artwork

If you’re a creative person, you can create art to embellish your dorm room. To get started, get your paint, pens, or other means of creating artwork, and get to work!

2. Create a Photo Wall

As you start out college, you’re probably going to miss many of your friends and family members. To make them feel closer, create a photo wall and hang photos that will remind you of them every day. Then, you can add photos of your new friends to the photo wall and keep the collection growing.

2. Print a Door Hanger

Using a door hanger is one of the easiest ways to decorate your dorm room at nearly no cost. There are many you can find available for free online. Just be sure you print them out on card stock to get the best results!

3. Hang Seasonal Decorations

When vacations are coming closer, you might start missing your family. To get a holiday vibe as soon as possible, hang seasonal decorations and lights to combat homesickness.

4. Create DIY Curtains

Your dorm room probably already has curtains, but that doesn’t mean you need to keep those. Nor do you necessarily have to buy expensive ones. To personalize your dorm room, consider creating your own curtains by simply using fabric fuse tape and swatches of fabric.

5. Optimize Your Space

Like we mentioned, when dealing with a small space, it’s important to optimize its use. Start with the shelves. Use open, corner shelves or hanging shelves to organize your books, frame, and more without using all the dorm room. 

6. Use Items to Stay Organized

In addition to clothes, you need to optimize the space for your smaller items too. You can use an expandable drawer for utensils, a hanging jewelry organizer for your precious metals, and a cosmetics organizer for your makeup tools.

7. Pick a Theme

To really let your personality come through in your dorm room, make sure you pick a specific theme. First, use your favorite colors for your sheets and furniture. If you’re passionate about music, consider hanging posters of your favorite bands. If you’re a sports fan, you can use your team’s colors and gadgets to make your form room more interesting. Consider creating a zen environment in your dorm room.

Personalizing your dorm room with decorations, no matter how simple or extravagant, can make your space feel warm, inviting, and comforting. Keep these ideas in mind as you begin the decorating process!

BIO: Originally from Rome, Italy, Giacomo Rotella holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Hult International Business School. He’s an experienced marketer with a focus on SEO.