Going to college is an inevitable time of transition in which you leave home, branch out, and get educated. But college can be a tricky place to navigate. You’ve got to balance your social life with your work life with your study life while also trying to figure out who you are and what interests you. But these survival tips can make that process easier.
Here are 7 college survival tips you should know:
1. Get to know your professors
While you probably won’t make friends with your professors, or hang out with them on weekends, it certainly pays to invest time in being an active participant in class, visiting them during office hours, and communicating with them via email. Not only will it boost your grade, but the strong ties you forge will be useful down the line, especially when it comes time to ask for a recommendation.
2. Read and follow the syllabus
Remember that thing college professors give you at the beginning of term? Don’t lose it. You’ll save yourself tons of headaches. Your syllabus contains all the vital information you need to pass a class: how to complete assignments and when they’re due, late work policies, contact information, and more.
3. Check your school email address regularly
Your professors and your major department will use your school email address to contact you about everything from department events to class cancellations to scholarship opportunities, and more. Try to sync the email address to your phone so you immediately receive any information you need to know.
4. Explore your eating options on and off campus
Nothing’s worse than eating at a dining hall day in, day out. Take the time and see what else is out there. Start on campus, then work into the surrounding neighborhoods. Flash your student ID and you may even be able to score discounts on good eats.
5. Make friends
College is easier with friends at your back, so get involved in class, chat with neighbors or hall-mates, or befriend your roommate. Also join extracurricular activities. Clubs and intramural sports are a great and easy way to build a community.
6. Don’t party too much
Remember, you’re paying for college. Don’t waste the opportunity by sleeping in and missing class.
7. Don’t make studying your only priority
College is about more than just getting a degree. It’s about making lifelong friends, about traveling, about trying new things. Make time to embrace the experience.
Summer internships are a fantastic opportunity for college students. They allow you to get your foot in the door at a company and give you first-hand experience in the working world. Remember, however, that you only have 2-3 months to deliver and gain value from your work experience—so make the most of your summer internship! Here’s how:
1. Be on time.
Although it seems self-explanatory, sleeping in during the summertime can be incredibly enticing. Fight the urge and show up to your internship on time. You’ll make a better impression and get the most out of every day.
2. Always be ready to learn.
As an intern, you’re not expected to know everything. You are, however, expected to be open to learning all that you can. Being flexible and expressing interest will help you tremendously.
3. Maintain a positive attitude.
It’s important to remain positive as an intern, even if some of your time is spent completing pesky or tedious tasks. Proving you’re enthusiastic and hard working will lead to more significant responsibilities over time.
4. Volunteer yourself.
If you ever find yourself bored and without work, offer your services to your supervisor/boss. Come to them with well-thought out ideas and prove yourself as an independent thinker and worker.
5. Keep a journal/work notebook.
Taking notes is the key to success in any internship. Not only will this help you keep organized, it gives you something to look back on when updating your resume!
Remember that every person in your office and every professional connection you make can be useful to you in the future. Introduce yourself and have conversations. The more of a mark you make, the more they’ll think about you during hiring season. Not to mention these people will most likely be your references when applying for jobs in the future.
Summer break is finally here, but that doesn’t mean you should spend all your time relaxing. Not when there’s money to make! After all, the more money you earn this summer, the less you have to borrow when next semester’s tuition bill arrives. So work hard, save plenty, and get creative. Here are a few ideas on how to earn more money this summer:
1. Sell used textbooks.
Got textbooks from last semester? Or even last year? Sell them with ValoreBooks, our sister-company, for cash! We have the highest sellback prices in the industry. Plus shipping is free and price quotes are instant. See how much your textbooks are worth.
2. Sell used CDs, DVDs, and more.
You can also sell used iPhones, iPads, video games, DVDs, and CDs using ValoreBooks — so clean out that entertainment center and turn your old stuff into cash. Shipping is still free and price quotes are still instant! Sell your stuff for cash!
3. Get a summer job.
This one seems obvious, but it’s surprising how many college students don’t work during the summer. Score even a part-time gig at a restaurant, park, summer camp, movie theater, resort, etc. But don’t wait to apply! Summer jobs are often in high demand, so apply ASAP.
4. Create your own job.
Can’t find a job? Make one! Offer your services as a babysitter, house sitter, pet sitter, lawnmower, or landscaper. Got other talents? Use them to make money. For leads on potential clients: check with your parents’ friends and coworkers.
5. Spend less.
Okay, “spending less” and “earning more” aren’t exactly the same thing, but both result in more money. Thankfully spending less is pretty easy, especially in the summer. Most towns and cities have free events and concerts. Plus the weather is getting better every day, so go enjoy the wild (and free!) outdoors. Skip restaurants, theme parks, and expensive vacations. Make your own fun!
Some advice from Yoda:
The best part about spring is the promise of better weather. The worst part is that springtime means spring-cleaning. But take solace in knowing that this year your efforts to get organized can make you money. Here’s how:
1. Organize your bookshelf
Go through all the books you own, setting aside anything you haven’t read, won’t read, and don’t want. Purge the wasted space from your bookshelf and all that dust! Then collect the used books and sell them with our sister-brand, ValoreBooks. We’ll take textbooks, novels, biographies—basically anything and everything you’ve got. Shipping is free and price quotes are instant.
2. Clean out your closet.
Just think of all the stuff that’s gathered over winter. Get in, tidy up, and uncover any old movies, CDs, or video games you don’t use anymore. Then get rid of them by selling them with ValoreBooks! See how much your used stuff is worth instantly.
3. Say goodbye to old electronics.
If you upgraded your iPhone or iPad over winter and have an old model lying around, say adiós to the dead weight and sell it to us. As always, shipping is free, price quotes are instant, and you get paid fast. Happy spring-cleaning!
It’s far easier to spend money than to earn it, which is why we’ve compiled a list of tools that will help you stay smart about spending. Check ‘em out:
Organize all your finances in one place — fast and for free. With Mint, you can see what you’re spending, how you’re spending it, and learn how to keep more of your money where it belongs: in your pocket.
2. Price tracking sites.
If you’re shopping online and you aren’t tracking prices, you may be spending more than you have to. Know what stores are selling the product you want at the lowest price, and see how that price has changed over time. That way you can know whether to buy now or wait for prices to drop. Websites like Shopzilla and Pricegrabber can help.
With ValoreBooks, you can sell your used stuff for cash! You can sell textbooks, CDs, movies, video games, iPads, and iPhones. Online quotes are instant, shipping is free, and sell back prices are the highest in the industry. It’s an easy way to make money by cleaning out your closet, entertainment system, or bookshelf.
Using SmarterBucks, you can earn rewards that automatically become extra student loan payments used to pay down any student loan faster and for less. Signing up is free and rewards are easy to earn. Shop with your favorite brands, take surveys, sell your used stuff, and more!
5. Don’t forget SimpleTuition!
Every time you need a private student loan, be sure to compare your options and find the best loan for you. Finding the best interest rate possible can save you thousands of dollars over the lifetime of your debt. So if you’re still in school or are considering going back, let us help you get educated for less.