Archive for the ‘College Life’ Category

New Year, New School: Why Transferring Colleges Might be a Smart Move

Categories: College Life

time-for-changeTransferring from your current college to a new one is a big deal, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t the right move. In fact, if it’s done for the right reasons, transferring colleges might be the best decision you make for your education and career.

If you’re thinking about transferring colleges this year, check out this list of good (and bad) reasons for doing so.

 

Good Reason to Transfer Colleges: You want to change majors.

Perhaps you chose your current college because it offers a top-notch business school; however, working as a camp counselor last summer helped you realize teaching is your life’s mission. If your current school doesn’t offer a degree program in education or whatever new course of study you choose, it could be time to transfer to a school that does.

Bad Reason to Transfer Colleges: You’re unsure about your major.

Maybe you’re in your sophomore year and still don’t have a clue what you want to major in. Transferring colleges offers you a chance to delay this important decision, but it also means you could lose credits and have to spend more money. Before packing your bags, have a heart-to-heart talk with your college advisor and ask for their input.

 

Good Reason to Transfer Colleges: You don’t feel safe on campus.

College is your home away from home. If you truly don’t feel safe on campus, it’s time to transfer. While no school is 100 percent safe, some schools do a better job than others of keeping your well-being in mind. All colleges must report crime statistics to the U.S. Department of Education, making it a great resource for comparing crime statistics of schools across the country.

Bad Reason to Transfer Colleges: You’re convinced your college campus is swarming with thieves.

No campus is crime free. Just because you left your laptop at the library and someone swiped it doesn’t mean there’s a crime problem at your school. Whether you transfer or not, keep these campus safety tips in mind and remember safety starts with you.

 

Good Reason to Transfer Colleges: You’re graduating!

You’ve just completed coursework to earn your degree from a two-year college and you’re ready to hit a four-year college campus as a junior. Transferring to a larger, four-year school can take a bit of getting used to, but it won’t be long before you’re settled in and making new friends.

Bad Reason to Transfer Colleges: You’re bored.

The social life at community college has let you down and you’ve decided you want to party like a rock star at a four-year university. Slow down; there will be plenty of time to get your groove on. Meanwhile, why not form a club based on something you enjoy and meet other students with similar interests?

 

Good Reason to Transfer: The vibe isn’t right.

No matter how many times you visit campus before registering, you won’t really know if a college is a good fit for you until you’re a student there. If you’ve been trying for a few semesters but still don’t feel like you fit in, it might be time to transfer, especially if your grades (and spirit) are suffering.

Bad Reason to Transfer: Your BFF is changing schools and begs you to follow suit.

It’s always tough when a good friend transfers to a new school, but following him or her is probably not a smart move. If your dearest pal heads off to a new school, resist the urge to withdraw. Join a club, try intramural sports, or volunteer; do whatever it takes to keep meeting people. Eventually you’ll find a classmate you “click” with.

 

Good Reason to Transfer: You miss your family.

Many college-bound students can’t wait to be on their own, but a good number of students struggle with feeling homesick. If you come from a very close family, you might find transferring to a college closer to home creates the optimum balance between family and freedom.

Bad Reason to Transfer: You feel guilty about leaving your family and hate to let them down.

Some families are better than others at cutting the apron strings. If your family is distressed about your departure, video chat with them and tell them about campus activities. Eventually they’ll stop laying down the guilt trip and embrace your collegiate career.

 

Good Reason to Transfer: Tuition and living expenses are putting too much of a burden on you or your family.

If the cost of school and related expenses are more than you or your family can afford, or you’re racking up major student loans, transferring colleges might not be a bad idea. Chances are, you can find a school that offers the education and college experience you want without breaking the bank.

Bad Reason to Transfer: You have to work part-time and that’s a drag.

There’s no doubt that working a part-time job means there’s less time to socialize and take part in extracurricular activities, but it also forces you to get organized, stay on schedule, and prioritize competing demands. And guess what? Mastering those skills will help make you an attractive candidate to employers once you graduate.

 

Deciding to transfer colleges is a serious decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly, but if you think transferring will help you achieve your personal, academic, and career goals, it just might be the smartest move to make.

image credit: motivationandchange.com

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Winter Survival Kit for High School & College Students

We here at Cappex Headquarters are right in the middle of a deep freeze! If you’re in an area that’s suffering from similar conditions, walking and driving to and from class can prove to be quite the treacherous journey. We’re offering up a few essential items to assemble for your winter survival kit that will help you get through the season.

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1. Invest in a quality coat, because it will make all the difference. In severely cold temperatures, someone who isn’t bundled up properly or has exposed skin can develop frostbite or hypothermia in a matter of minutes. Choose a coat that has down or down alternative filling – like this one from Orolay or this one from U.S. Polo Assn. – or another fluffy material that offers a good amount of insulation. Look for one with a hat to keep your entire head covered and warm during those times where the wind chill drops.

2. It’s a good idea to stock up on essential medicine before you get sick. The last thing you’ll want to do when you’re sick is go out in the cold weather to go to the store. Save yourself the trip by being one step ahead. Be sure to have on hand pain relievers, cold & flu relief medicine, cough and throat drops, and tissues. We love this adorable kit from Mom’s Medicine Chest that has all the essentials in one place.

3. If you’re not feeling well or just need to defrost after a particularly cold walk, curling up under an electric throw or blanket will warm you up in no time. For chilly nights, warm up your bed before getting into it at night: about ten or fifteen minutes before you’re ready to go to bed, lay out your electric blanket under your blankets and on top of your flat sheet. Once you’re ready, remove and unplug the electric blanket and enjoy the warmth as you drift off to sleep. We’re big fans of this heated throw from Sunbeam that’s the perfect size for wrapping up in. (Whenever using an electric blanket, be sure to follow all the safety instructions and always unplug it when not in use.) 

4. For those days when you’ve got a long, cold walk ahead of you or when you need to stay outside for an extended amount of time, keep your hands and feet extra warm with hand and feet warmers. These warmers come in all different shapes and sizes, like these hand warmers and foot warmers from HotHands, and provide tremendous warmth for hours.

autumn-blanket-cardigan-coffee-Favim.com-6325465. Winter is hibernation season, which means that going out to eat is not always an option. Delivery can get expensive, so to save a few bucks and eat in the comfort of your own home, stock up on canned goods and microwaveable food. Let’s be honest, after a cold, hard day, nothing beats effortless, on-demand, warm food. For these types of situations, having food options on hand that are quick and super easy to prepare are ideal, like soup, chili, spaghetti-o’s, mac & cheese, dry microwaveable meals, and frozen meals. Another great option is whipping up a big batch of soup, chili, or pasta on the weekend and heating up individual portions of it throughout the week. Don’t forget to also stock up on essential warm weather drinks, like coffee, tea, and hot chocolate.

6. To keep yourself extra warm when you have to brave the elements, wear tight clothing under your regular clothes. Tight clothing, such as leggings and fitted shirts are great in retaining warmth and body temperature. Cuddl Duds makes a huge selection of clothing made specifically for this purpose, so check them out.

7. Moisturizing and exfoliating have never been more important than now. As the cold season progresses, your skin will become dry, crackly, and flaky. To treat this, regularly exfoliate and moisturize your hands, face, and lips. Invest in a good hand cream and some lip balm. For your face, there are many DIY exfoliation and moisturizing recipes using everyday ingredients that will do the trick.

If the cold has you holed up inside, take advantage of that time by checking in on your Cappex College Message Center and maybe even applying for a few scholarships!

image credits: news.cornell.edu & favim.com

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How to Start a Student Organization

Activities such as organizations, clubs, and volunteer work are important when it comes to college, scholarship, and job applications. Colleges, scholarship providers, and prospective employers are always looking for leadership skills among their applicants. To make yourself stand out, think about something you’re passionate about. If there isn’t already a student organization surrounding that cause or activity, consider starting your own organization!

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Creating your own student organization is beneficial for you because it provides you with a way of meeting fellow students with interests similar to yours who you can work with toward a common goal. It’s also great for your school because it will allow students to become more involved on campus and they’ll be able to provide a more diverse set of extracurricular offerings to prospective students. Creating or even just participating in an organization is a great way build your resume while doing something you enjoy and are passionate about — what a sweet deal! If you’re interested in moving forward with your idea, here are the steps needed to start a student organization.

Step 1. Strategic Planning

First and foremost you will need to develop a mission and focus of your organization. There are many questions you should ask, and answer, before and during your planning to create a new organization. What are you passionate about? Why do you want to create an organization? What do you wish to achieve by creating this organization? Are there other students that share the same passion and goals? Is the organization appropriate for your college and fit into your college’s mission? Does it address any issues that the campus may be facing? Why does your organization need to be recognized by the school and how will it benefit the school? Is there an existing organization on campus that is similar to your organization’s mission and goals? The answers to these questions will be most helpful when you have to draft a proposal and constitution of the organization for your college’s approval. Familiarize yourself with the answers to all those questions, because college, administrators, advisors, and students will want to learn more about your organization before committing to it.

Step 2. Founding Members

In order to successfully start your organization, you will need support. Speak to people you believe will be interested or who can help you spread the word. Additionally, your school may require more than one member in order to establish the organization/club in the first place. Having additional founding members will also help ease your stress and tension because they can help you with the workload and preparation.

Step 3. Advising

Once you have an idea and people to support your plan and goals, you will need to speak to an advisor at your school to discuss next steps. Since different schools have different requirements, it is important to discuss with the advisors first before to see what else you’ll need to make your dream come true. Your advisor can answer most of your questions and concerns about getting your organization recognized and approved at the college.

Step 4. Paperwork

There will be quite a bit of paperwork, so be prepared to write, present, talk, and sign a whole lot. At this point, you need to sit down and draft the official documents for the organization. As the founder of the organization, you will most likely have to draft a constitution. This document should be detailed and include statements regarding the name of the organization and its meaning, what it stands for, the goal and purpose of the organization, the benefits of having the organization on campus and why the acknowledgement by the college is important, the activities the organization will participate in and any causes that the organization might be involved in, current and future plans for the organization, and how the organization can benefit the community in a bigger picture. Additional documents may be required depending on your organization.

Step 5. Congratulations!

After all your hard work, your organization is finally acknowledged by the college and is officially open to student involvement! Now it is time to establish the organization in the community of students. Utilize your marketing and public communication skills to recruit more members and encourage involvement in both the organization and the community. You can pass out flyers, hold information sessions, host activities and events to raise awareness of your organization, and participate in student-centered events and activities on and off campus to gain a better sense of community and recruit. It may be stressful and frustrating at first, but it will be well worth it when students begin to show interest and join. Remember to have fun with it. Good luck!

Still trying to figure out what you’re most passionate about? Cappex can help! Explore your interests by visiting our Colleges and Majors search tool.

image credit: ferguson.ua.edu

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