How to budget your money at college
Ah, money. It seems like not a single college student has enough of it nowadays. Between tuition, books, and money to spend on weekends, our wallets flatten by the minute. Starting with the one of the biggest drainers of money would be textbooks. By taking 15 or more credits, it's not much of a surprise that you're going to be in need of about 4 or more books. That being said, there are cheaper ways to acquire necessary texts. You can always rent or buy used books from the Marist bookstore, which will undoubtedly save you a good chunk of cash. To go a little further and cut your costs even more, you can look for online vendors of textbooks such as cheg.com, amazon.com, and others that sometimes even pay the shipping fees! Also, as a last resort, you may even be able to find someone on campus who is selling the right book you need. I've known many kids whom have offered up their books to be flexible and willing to negotiate prices based on the need of the person who's buying the book. On average, students looking for the cheaper routes when it comes to buying books will seek out online vendors and people on campus who are just looking to get rid of old books. The bookstore is known to be very expensive, but renting and buying used books can significantly decrease that frightening number on your billing receipt.
Moving onto a more unspoken topic, weekends can really drain your bank account. When heading to clubs, bars, or anywhere else you may want to head out to, think about the cheapest ways to get there. For upperclassmen, friends with cars can be your best option. Of course, you should always chip in every now and then for gas money, especially on longer trips, but heading out with a friend would definitely be cheaper than taking a taxi out of Poughkeepsie. Let's face it, taxi drivers (especially Poughkeepsie drivers) can be a little frightening and drive in ways that aren't exactly safe. Also, Marist does sponsor trips to the mall on certain weekends and the cost is only $1. You can use Marist money to pay for these shuttle trips and they have different times that you can get picked up, so your time at the mall isn't too restricted.
If you happen to be somebody who's paying for your tuition, either in part of completely, you may want to consider finding work on campus. Usually, work study will be of great assistance to you if your need calls for such accommodations. Otherwise, if you're just looking to make some money while focusing on academics, you can always look in offices and departments of the school for openings. A lot of the time, the employment services offered by Marist will help you find a job and if not, there are always places off campus that are fairly close that may be hiring. Working during the academic not only helps pay for tuition and books, but also for some leisure time!
Lastly, saving up for going abroad is a major concern for students who are thinking of going during their later years at Marist. Between flights, traveling within your respective continent, food, and other miscellaneous expenses, being able to afford going abroad may seem impossible. First off, try to foresee what the cost of living in whatever place you're trying to get to will end up being. If the country or city is typically more expensive, you may want to consider taking extra shifts at work or saving any form of money that you're given as a possible holiday or birthday gift. Also, do research on your desired destination. If there are trips to other countries that are included in your tuition that may also provide housing and meals, you may not have to worry about saving enough money to cover these expenses. Also, try to build in a little extra money that you may want to end up using to cover the cost of a last-minute plan or trip to a new city or country.
Regardless of the motive for financing your money, it is always important to have savings and enough to spend at your own will. We all want to have fun, we all want to be able to succeed after Marist, but the choices we make now are the ones that are going to lay the foundation for our success.
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