Posts Tagged ‘after college’

Your Senior Year Bucket List

Categories: College Life

After three great years at school, you’ll begin your senior year and wonder how the time has passed so quickly. With just one more year left of college, making a bucket list of things to accomplish before you graduate is a great way to go out with a bang. At the beginning of the year, gather with your friends and create a list of everything you want to experience one final time in college. Make a single list or break it into categories and check them off as you go!

Restaurants

Your town will have famous local landmarks that are loved by everyone and usually have a signature dish that’s good enough to be featured on Diners Drive Ins and Dives. If you haven’t already frequented these eateries, they can be great additions to your bucket list, and will be an experience that will tie you back to your university community.

There are also likely to be restaurants around that have always interested you, but you haven’t been to yet because they are on the fancier side. These places are perfect for your bucket list as well. Go to dinner to celebrate birthdays or other special occasions, and enjoy the higher end of what your town has to offer.

University Events

Your school may have a great performing arts program, well-known a cappella troupe, or other groups on campus that put on shows throughout the school year. Student performances belong on your bucket list because they showcase the talents of your peers and can be a really fun experience. Admission is usually free or only costs a few dollars.

Local Attractions

Wherever your school is located, there will be local attractions that you’ll want to visit before you graduate. Berry picking in Michigan, surfing in California, going to the Kentucky derby, and other location-specific activities will create great memories for you and your friends. Adding these experiences to your bucket list will help you have the full college experience expected at your school.

Bar Crawl

Now that you’re 21 and legal to drink, different bars in town are a great way to pad your bucket list. You can plan a bar crawl, and hit all these spots in a night or a weekend, or intersperse visits throughout the year. College town bars provide a unique experience that you’re sure to miss once you graduate.

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The College Grad’s Guide to Using a Credit Card

At some point in your college career, or perhaps a short time after, you filled out an application and received a piece of plastic in the mail with your name on it! Maybe you fell for a free gimmick your first few weeks at school, and before you knew what was happening, you had a $1,000 limit in your wallet. Perhaps you chose to open a credit card so you could begin building your credit history. Regardless of how and when you obtained your first credit card, during your first few years out of college, you may be itching to use it on an electrical bill, a move to a new city, or a first date. Before you start swiping and signing, consider these guidelines.

Don’t Assume

One of the biggest mistakes college grads make with their credit cards is they assume they’ll have the means to pay it all off later. Don’t bank on raises and promotions. Don’t assume you’ll find a good-paying job next month. If you don’t have a set-in-stone plan on how you’re going to pay back your debt, don’t assume you will later.

Have a Plan

Before you start viewing your credit card as just some extra money, have a plan for what your credit card is used for. Is it only for emergency situations, such as a flat tire? Is it for one major purchase, like a new computer or a mattress? Is it solely used to build your credit history, in which case you would use it to make purchases, and pay it all off within a month? Decide what the credit card is specifically used for, and don’t deviate from your plan.

Create a Budget

One way you can ensure that you won’t be using your credit card on every bill and every trip to the grocery store is to create a budget for yourself. When you get your first job and you have a good grasp on how much you spend on bills, loans, food, gas, rent, and entertainment, sit down and add it all up. Are you spending more than what you’re making? If you’re not ending up with money leftover when all is said and done, you’re more likely to start using your credit card for little things here and there. Work on making cuts to your budget before you start using your credit card for purchases.

Know What Makes Your Score

The factors that make up your credit score are rather complex. It may be a good idea to familiarize yourself with all that can improve or damage your score. For example, not having a credit card at all, high balances, too many credit cards, or credit cards you maxed out too quickly can damage your credit. Having a few, responsibly managed credit cards you use every now and then and pay off quickly are good for your credit.

 

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4 Ways to Earn Extra Money as a College Grad

As a fresh college graduate, you’re probably pressed for pennies. With the economy as it is, many students leave school without a job to jump into, and with student loans looming in the distance. While moving back home after graduation can greatly assist with this burden, some students don’t have that option, making their financial situations even more stressful. If you’re in need for cash as you wait eagerly by  your cell phone for a job offer, or if you need some extra money to afford your apartment, student loans, and groceries, check out these four ways college graduates can add a little more green to their wallets.

Sell Your Stuff:

Upon leaving for college, you may have looked around your bedroom fondly, thinking to yourself how much you would miss everything there, and how important it all was to you. Now that its been four years or more, you may not have quite the same tastes. Perhaps the video games you once loved are now overplayed and collecting dust. Maybe your bedroom set is looking a bit childish. Perhaps you have a bigger and better TV now and don’t need the little one sitting on your dresser. You might want to check out all the college textbooks you saved and determine whether they’re still relevant to your career. Go through your belongings and sell what you no longer use or want.

Take on Tutoring:

If you’ve got a few extra hours a week, and you’re trying to figure out what to do with that math degree, consider offering tutoring services to your local middle schools and high schools. To a college graduate like you, their homework and tests will be a cinch, and you can explain to them when they’ll “need this in real life.”

Freelance:

For those trying to find something in the photography, video, art, writing, graphic design, and other creative arts areas, you may want to consider freelancing. As a freelancer, you’ll work on and get paid for individual projects people or businesses need. You can be hired this way through friends and family, or through freelancing web sites such as Elance, Guru, iFreelance, and Freelancer. By freelancing, you can work around other jobs, and as often or as little as you like.

Part-Time It:

While you may feel like you earned your degree so you don’t have to work a check-out line, a part time job where you’re only required to work a few hours a week could give you that financial boost you really need. Working eight hours a week at minimum wage is an extra $200 a month! That could be your car payment! In addition, many college grads with professional office jobs find their second part-time job at the coffee shop or grocery store to be a nice break from the high stress and high standards environment of their full time job. Suddenly, wearing a uniform and chatting with your coworkers during the slow hours is kind of refreshing!

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