Going into college I had a strict mindset. I did NOT want a job as a freshman. I wanted to give myself time to adjust and enjoy college without worrying about a job commitment.
With this mindset already in place, I knew that I had to have some money saved before I left for school. In high school I worked many jobs, sometimes running from one to the next all in one day, after eight hours of school. I worked my butt of in high school enough to buy a new car before I turned 18. I was extremely proud of this accomplishment and still am because most of the other kids with cars like the one I worked for, had theirs handed to them.
There is something to be said for a person with the drive to do something. But I think that anyone in high school can do just what I did. I worked hard and never gave up, giving me a very large number in my bank account to do what I want with.
College has never been an option for me it has always been a "you will be going to college" and I accepted that a long time ago. My parents help me with my tuition and housing and I pay for my books and everything I want to do that is extra outside of that.
I went into freshman year with a determined amount of money I would be okay with spending on these extra activities like shopping and eating out. I allowed myself 75$ a month. I track what I spend and where I spend it and put it under a category. Then at the end of the month, I go back and evaluate what category I can spend less in to spend more in a different one.
You never realize how much McDonald's costs until you're broke, in college, counting every penny.