Planning for Post-Grad: Take a Break or Jump Into a Job?

You’ve spent the last four (or more) years learning a trade (at least in theory) and now that you’re about to receive your diploma, you may be wondering where you go from here. If you were lucky enough to get an internship, you may have a job waiting for you. Ditto if you’re going into the family business or you happen to be top of your class and graduating from a very pricy law school.

But for the majority of students leaving school with a piece of paper that qualifies them for work, all that awaits is a lot of hustling (application and rejection). Click to continue reading…

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How to Avoid Bad Professors

In primary school, it is more or less impossible to effectively avoid teachers that are known to be awful. You either get assigned to their class or you don’t. Once you’re in, you’re stuck. Although many a parent has complained about a teacher being “unfair” to their child, it is the policy of most schools that unless there is abuse of some sort, a kid will stay in the classroom they are assigned to.

But now you’re in college and things are a bit different. You not only get to choose the classes you want to take, but even general education courses that are mandatory often come with several time slots and teachers to choose from. And once you get to your major study, you’ll be limited to a smaller department and faculty, but you still have some latitude when it comes to selecting the classes and teachers you prefer. So how can you tell which teachers to avoid? There are actually several ways to find out. Click to continue reading…

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Creative Ways to Save Money While You’re in College

Image by Ben Rollman

Trying to balance the cost of living with tuition, car payments, and basic living needs while you are going to school can be tricky. With all of the different expenses students are responsible for, it is often necessary to cut back on some items and get creative with your budget. Setting ground rules and goals is imperative to putting away some extra cash.

The first rule of thumb is to eliminate excess. Excess can be defined as any extraneous or unnecessary items that you can live without. For example, do you really need cable TV? With programs like Hulu, Netflix, and YouTube, you can often stream television on your computer for free or with a small fee.

Additionally, reduce the number of times you eat out during the week. Eating out can cause an enormous drain on your budget. Get creative with your meals and try new things. If you have a stove available in your dorm or rental, host an ethnic foods night. Foods like lentils, rice, and beans are very cheap and easy to prepare. Sharing with other people means you won’t waste anything and you may be able to get your friends to host on other nights saving you both time and money.

Shop at discount stores. Hit up thrift stores for vintage clothing or discount racks for reduced price items. Look for bulk bins at grocery stores or co-operatives or try to buy non-perishable items like toilet paper and paper towels in bulk. You’re going to use it at some point, so you may as well buy it at a good price.

A car can be a source of major financial drain. Click to continue reading…

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Entertainment for the Week (on a Budget)

Times are tough. Most people find themselves tightening their belts in more than one area of their lives, and leisurely activities are usually the first to go. The economic downturn doesn’t have to mean all work and no play, though. All that’s needed for a thrifty week of fun is a few dollars and a bit of imagination.

Monday – Frugal Film Night

For an inexpensive film night, all that’s needed is a library card and a few friends. Movies that are checked out from the library don’t cost anything (as long as they’re returned on time!) and each friend can be responsible for bringing one “concession stand” item. Choosing a theme for the movies and the evening can make the night even more fun, and friends can get creative with the snacks that they bring.

Image by Ishikawa Ken

Tuesday – Wallet-friendly Philanthropy

Whether it’s offering to babysit a friend’s kids for free or working at a school bake sale, volunteering is fun, free, and fulfilling. Click to continue reading…

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The Complete List of Green Careers

Basically, green careers are those that contribute to preserving or improving environmental quality. The green economy is touching practically every industry you can think of. Many companies involved with wind, solar, biofuels, energy efficiency, and other sectors of the green economy are hiring workers with a host of different skills. Let’s take a look at some of the increasingly in-demand green jobs:

Engineer

Civil, computer software, electrical, chemical, mechanical, and environmental engineers all have great opportunities in the world of green jobs. Some engineers design and construct wind turbines and solar technologies, whereas others work to expand mass transit systems. Engineers create alternative fuels and the systems that will use them. Civil engineers redesign outdated infrastructure and develop more environmentally sustainable and energy efficient structures for cities and housing projects.

Environmental Lawyer

Environmental law is a growing field. Due to the green movement gaining momentum, numerous laws have been passed to ensure people and companies work to preserve environmental integrity. Environmental lawyers deal with laws that regulate air and water pollution, protect endangered species, enforce environmental codes, and much more. Click to continue reading…

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