Author: Alexandria Ramos

Networking 101

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“It’s not what you know, it’s who you know”. We’ve all heard it before. It’s easiest to find opportunities through people you already know rather than a mass announcement. Networking is an essential career skill. Here’s how to perfect it:

  1. Say ‘yes’net1

As often as possible, take advantage of every positive opportunity that is offered. Staying in all the time never did anyone any favors. No one will know your name if you never introduce yourself. You never know what even a simple meeting can lead to!

  1. Be nicenet2

This really shouldn’t need to be said, but being nice should be at the top of your priority list with networking. Say please and thank you. Smile. A little kindness goes a very long way!

  1. Go the extra milenet3

Don’t be afraid to add a little extra onto your normal interactions. Being organized, having copies of your resume handy, and even a simple compliment can put you at the top of an employer’s list and help you be memorable.

  1. Put your best foot forwardnet4

Do your best work in everything you do, even if you don’t think it will be noticed. Make sure you’re dressed nice in professional environments, even if you aren’t on the clock. Treat everyone around you with respect at all times. Not only because it’s the right thing to do, but also because you never know who is watching or who has influence within a field.

What are your networking tips? Let us know in the comments below!

The Thing No One Likes to Talk About

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We’ve all been there – your award letter comes and maybe it’s not quite as much as you’d hoped it would be. And the loan portion isn’t quite as little as you’d hoped it would be. But you take out the loan anyway because how else are you supposed to pay for school? We’re 18-22 year olds mostly, and I don’t know about you, but I certainly haven’t got $30,000 lying around for free spending. College costs continue to rise and with the rising cost comes a rising amount of average debt per student per year.

 loans1

 In addition to a higher amount of debt being taken on by students, a larger number of students have to resort to taking out loans as well.

 loans2

 Another thing to keep in mind while borrowing for undergrad, is how you are planning to pay for grad school should you choose that route. According to the Wall Street Journal, “About 15% of graduate and professional school students graduate with six-figure student loan debt compared with only 0.3% of undergraduate students”. Be aware of potential salary increases that can come from an advanced degree in comparison with the additional debt and decide for yourself if it is appropriate for your goals.

 Student loan debt is not all bad though. With proper planning and budgeting, you can keep your student loan debt under control. Still, college students need to be aware of how much they are borrowing and make sure it is the smallest amount possible to get through school. Supplement the borrowed amounts with jobs and scholarships as much as possible. It’s not always enough to cover everything, but every little bit counts especially once interest starts adding up on an unnecessary loan.

The Dreaded Freshman 15

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It’s about time for midterms so if you’re in your first year, by now you might be noticing some changes. New classes, new friends, new school, new… pant size? If you’re having to dance a little more to get into your skinny jeans, you’re not alone. You may be experiencing a very common problem: the Freshman 15.

freshman 15

There are many reasons why this is such a common occurrence but one of the biggest reasons is the dining hall. You suddenly have unrestricted access to buffets full of food. At home, your parents and tight schedule might have kept you a bit more reigned in as far as your eating habits were concerned. But now, there’s no one there to swap out your cupcake for an apple. That’s up to you now.

To overcome this problem, try to remember what your eating habits were at home and revert back to those. Also, try keeping a log of everything you eat each day. At the end of the day you can look back through your food log and realize how much your eating habits have changed and adjust accordingly.

Another reason many new students experience the freshman 15 is stress. With all the new things introduced into your life so suddenly, many students begin to eat for comfort. More difficult course work also results in less time to prepare healthy home-cooked meals and often lead to ordering take-out food instead. This is especially true when you live in a dorm with no access to a kitchen. This one is a bit trickier to overcome, but in time you will adjust to your new surroundings and things will get much easier.

Another way to combat the freshman 15 is to take full advantage of your college’s rec center. Basically every college in America has some sort of rec center and the cost to use them is usually included in your bill so you might as well get your money’s worth! Combine regular gym time with healthy eating habits and you’ll see that freshman 15 disappear in no time!

How do you combat the freshman 15?

The Perks of Single Life

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1. More Time
Don’t want to choose between a lunch date and studying? You don’t have to! Want to spend the entire night finishing that book you just can’t put down? Or every season of Breaking Bad on Netflix? Or your entire board of recipes on Pinterest? Go ahead. Do it. All of it.

single1

2. More Comfort
Ladies, don’t be afraid to go on a shaving hiatus until spring. Do you understand how much time this will save? While you’re at it, wear literally whatever you want without having a somewhat significant other pester you on your appearance. “Really? You’re wearing that?”

3. More Freedom
Hang out with anyone you want. Talk to anyone you want. Flirt with anyone you want. Dance with anyone you want. This is the perfect time to meet different kinds of people and figure out what kind of people you like spending time with.

Students Sitting on Campus with Calculators

4. Be yourself
I left the most important one for last: figure out who you are. It’s easy to get wrapped up in a relationship and become “John Smith’s Girlfriend” or “Jane Doe’s Boyfriend” and forget who you are. The most important perk of being single is to learn how to be completely self-reliant and comfortable with being exactly who you are by yourself without having to define yourself or determine your worth based on your significant other.

What are some of the perks of being single to you? Tell us in the comments below!

Be Yourself

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College is a fantastic time to explore new fields of study and new extracurricular activities. It’s a time when you can become a better, braver version of yourself. However, while you are trying so many new things and meeting so many new people, it’s easy to get wrapped up in your new life and fall into a stream of students that are doing and saying things that you may not agree with. Trying new things is great until you begin to compromise your own values in the name of exploration.

beyourself1

Make sure that while you are trying new things you are only doing them because you want to, not because someone else expects you to be a certain way. For example, if you choose a certain major because you are passionate about it and would like to enter the field, do not switch majors simply because one of your friends (or even professors!) tells you to. Be sure that you are making decisions for yourself.beyourself2

Similarly, if you are against the use of drugs or alcohol, do not feel that you need to explore these things simply because it is what everyone else is doing. You are an adult now (officially…yikes!) and you are more than capable of making your own  decisions. If you want to study on Friday night instead of going to that frat party, feel free to. If you’d rather hang out in the library than the bar, that’s your choice as well. Don’t let the actions of others dictate your lifestyle.beyourself3

Whether it’s the way you dress, your hair color, your religion, your major, or your study habits, don’t let anyone else tell you how to live your life. After all, it’s yours and yours alone. We all have one life to live so we might as well make it one we love.