Saving is difficult for anyone, but for a college student… it is ten times harder. You will forever be shelling out money for something. So how on earth do you stash away some cash? Go get a jar or go buy yourself a super cute piggy bank. Whenever you have change, plop it into the jar. Don’t think about the jar, other than putting change into it. (MAYBE look at the jar if you are desperate for fare). You are doing this so that at the end of the school year (or the calendar year… up to you!), you can take that money and cash it in. You never know how much you might have racked up over the year.
Subscribe to Save!
Simple enough. If you live in a city or populated area, sign up for the local Groupon or Livingsocial. The coupons and deals will come in handy for activities for you to do or places to eat food or just great deals that may come in handy. It never hurts to sign up!
Splurge.. a Little!
I probably don’t need to tell you why you need an iHome. First of all, the iHome is a speaker system, which, I don’t know about you but I can’t imagine a day in my life without music. Sometimes you just need to put some music up loud without totally wrecking your iPhone/iPod touch speakers. Second, it’s a charger. That’s one less cord you need to worry about causing a potential fire hazard in your room and at my school, that’s a big deal. Third, hello alarm clock! Set that baby up and you won’t ever sleep through your alarm again. Finally, as long as your technology is current and compatible, it can travel with you wherever you move. iHomes come in sleek color choices so you don’t have to worry about it clashing with anything.
Make a List
Something I wish I had done before cramming all of my belongings into tubs and shipping them off into storage was to have had made a list of everything I had. Why? So that when all of the pretty college stuff comes out at Target (and other fine retailers), I know what I actually need and what I don’t. So while you are packing, take out your legal pad or random scrap paper or notes from the philosophy class you don’t remember much from and write everything you have down. Also, if you are clever, label the boxes and keep track of what is in what box so if you need something on the fly, you know where to find it.
Your Closet Doesn’t Have to be an Obstacle
It was hard for me to go from a walk in closet at home with shelving and a shoe cozy and cabinets to the tiny closet at school with one set of drawers. First, you need to consider what you are hanging up and what you need to put in your closet. For me, my closet entails shoes, coats, sweaters, business casual attire, dresses, and nice shirts and pants. Which sounds like a lot but at the end of the day, it’s not much. Instead of putting shoes on the bottom of my closet and just hanging stuff up for the sake of it, I should done something like this.
These are perfect to put in between my clothes so I have more storage and more space. You don’t need your closet to be bland and messy. Just think it out before packing it up.
Adding a Personal Touch
I think something that is over looked when people are packing for school and studying are the personal touches to their rooms. Often you can’t paint the walls in your dorm, so wall decals (polka dots are excellent) make a big difference. Another thing you can do is take printed pictures of you, family and friends and arrange them in a creative manner on your walls. You can always go the poster route – buying posters of your favourite celebrity, car or whatever tickles your fancy, or you can go above and beyond and design your own posters. Staples is always having copy and print deals so check those out if that’s what you’re interested in. Just don’t have bare walls and no semblance of you in your dorm.
Document All You Can
College is a wonderful experience. You need to make the most of it, so grab your iPhone/camera/webcam and take the most pictures you can of you and your friends. Pictures are wonderful for some many things that it goes without saying that it helps to document the experiences.
Think Outside the Library
During the finals crush, you may find that there is no space for you or your study group in the library and that may cause a problem. However, you just need to think outside of the box, outside of the library, and you may find somewhere even better than where you were originally going. See if your school has open classrooms in any of your buildings; you may be able to use your classroom and access the materials in there like the projectors and TVs and so forth. See if there are any lounges on campus and cozy up there. Also, there is no shame in working in the local Barnes and Noble or Starbucks. Coffee shops and bookstores are two of my favorite places to study.
I hope at least one tips will help you in preparing for your upcoming semester of college. However, you have some time, even if it doesn’t seem like it, so enjoy the rest of your summer and I hope you all have amazing fall semesters.