Thanks, College.

Common real-world skills we learned at college, in or out of the classroom.

  1. Parallel parking: If you’re from the city this might not apply to you, or if you don’t have a car. For those of us from the suburbs or country with a car on campus, we learned to parallel park soon after arriving to college.  This skill comes in handy often when travelling home, to the city, or on vacation.  It also widens your parking possibilities in any situation.
  2. Tolerance for extreme temperatures: As the weather gets colder, we adapt to walking across campus in the cold, with the wind blowing through our layers of jackets and long-johns. We learn in our first semesters to bundle up and forget about being cute.
  3. Independence: Whether you were looking forward to this or not, you become more independent in college. You have to if you go to college more than about an hour away from home.  You (hopefully) learn how to do your laundry, budget your money, clean your room without being prompted, and study and do homework on your own free will.
  4. Time management: Sometimes, it takes people their whole college careers to get this down, but everyone learns throughout their college life how important time management is. Some people know the importance of it and still choose to manage their time badly.  You have to balance classes, studying, work, friends, sleep, eating, and mental health.  Usually this “balance” involves giving up one or more of these things, which one depends on your priorities.
  5. Multi-tasking: You may have been good at this before college, but you’ll be a master by the time you graduate. Multitasking can look like many things: eating while you work, study, or walk to class, taking homework to work, or considering meeting with a study group to be hanging out with friends.


We learn a lot in college that may have nothing to do with our degrees, but these skills or pieces of knowledge are just as important as the information we learn in class.  What are some skills you’ve learned in college that have become useful in real life?  What are you most thankful for?

Normal Fees or Scams on College Students?

Wait, another charge on my college account?  Are they serious? This is a thought that crosses every college student’s mind at one point or another.  Some questionable fees that happen to collegians are parking pass fees, lab fees, and miscellaneous fees.

Parking pass fees were created for colleges and universities to turn cement into gold.  Charging a student hundreds of dollars to park their car in a lot when they are already increasing tuition by the hundreds each year is absurd.  The only longshot reason of why they would do this could be to deter students from bringing their cars which would be more eco-friendly, but I have a feeling the policy makers are looking to keep their pockets greener than the Earth.  I could understand adding a small fee (upwards of $10) to each student who has a car on campus when the lot is in need of a repaving, but hundreds for two semesters of use?  Many schools have a parking pass fee of $200 and when broken down across the school year is about a dollar a day.  There are people in the world living for a dollar a day.  How amazing would it be for a college to donate even just one semester of students’ parking pass fees to a charity?  Unfortunately, that isn’t likely to happen anytime soon.

Another scam on college students is the issue of lab fees.  Don’t get me wrong, if you are a pre-med student working in a lab, those chemicals can add up.  Plus the equipment used and such are all very expensive, and it is logical for a student studying in a science lab to pay fees.  What is crazy is the computer lab fee that various colleges and universities are issuing to students.  Personally, I was charged for a computer lab fee as one of my communications was located in a classroom full of computers.  What is my money going to?  The electricity?  The computers are always left on; maybe utilizing the auto-sleep function of these computers would be a better (and greener) way to go.  Computers are essential to most any field of study.  Students do not pay for a library fee to use that resource which includes a computer lab.  I am not suggesting there be a library fee, but I do not understand the concept of charging a class to be in a room of computers when computers are a necessity in multiple areas of study.  Should there be a separate classroom light fee as well?  Okay, that one may be pushing it, but you understand where I’m coming from, I hope.

Finally, there is a section of college online bills entitled “Miscellaneous Fees.”  Who made that one up?  Where does that money go, specifically?  I know that when a college’s budget gets out of control they dive into this fee, but we are not told where that money is going exactly.  I think a complimentary email would be polite, even if our inboxes are already full of those other annoying emails colleges send to their students.

As seen in the news recently, students have begun to fight these problems in hopes to revert how colleges and universities around the world are treating their students.


I’m reading English Simplified

10 Benefits of Living Off Campus

In all of my six years in college (be nice I am working on my third degree) I have never lived in a dorm.  I never saw the appeal of living in the dorms.  I just saw them as small, generally smelly spaces that hundreds of people have slept in prior to me arriving.  So I always chose to live off campus.

Sure there were some drawbacks including parking passes and paying rent, but there were also a lot of perks.  I have my own space, my own room, and my own bathroom.  I had a roommate in my first apartment, but at least I got to choose who they were.  I believe that the biggest perk of living off campus was that it taught me how to be responsibile.  I had to work to pay my rent and bills, so I quickly learned how to multi-task.  This also taught me about the art of money management and budgeting.  Trust me, living in Florida and having your electric shut off in the middle of summer will really teach you to pay your bills on time!  Here are some of the reasons that I think it is better to live off-campus while in college:

Reason #1 – You are in charge of every aspect of your living situation.  If you want to leave dishes in the sink and come home drunk at 3am you can.

Reason #2 – It teaches you economic responsibility.  You are in charge of paying rent, bills and all the other expenses.

Reason #3 – You get to have pets (If your landlord allows it).

Reason #4 – If you need to, or choose to, have roommates you are the one selecting them not a college admission counselor.

Reason #5 – You get your own kitchen and bathroom.

Reason #6 – If you have odd living tendencies (like needing to mop your floors three times a day) then you are free to do it without judgment in your own space.

Reason #7 – You are always accountable, again teaching you even more responsibility.  It is your job to get up and head to class, there is not a friend down the hall who will bang on your door to make sure you are awake.

Reason #8 – FREEDOM! There is no RA overseeing your behavior and there is no need to sign in or out.

Reason #9 – You learn the reality of how much things cost.  Buying dishes, towels, curtains, etc. gets SUPER expensive quickly and it is better to learn that lesson sooner than later.

Reason #10 – You get to have a car that you don’t have to walk a mile to get to.

Can you think of any other benefits of living off campus? Sound off in the comments below!



I’m reading Human Resource Management