19 Overlooked College Perks Students Need To Take Advantage Of

19 Overlooked College Perks Students Need To Take Advantage Of

FREE. FOOD.
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College. The time when we are released and given freedom while we are expected to grow up and become mature at the same time. The college experience is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

We all get four years. Four. Short. Years.

To live it up, to grow up, and to find ourselves. There are so many options and opportunities that come along with these four years. Several should be taken advantage of and never forgotten because sadly we will never be this young again. Our college experience is strengthened and bettered because of these few things. It's all a part of the journey, y'all.

Live it up while you can because before you know it, we are all getting thrown into the real world without that student discount and acceptance of mistakes…

1. Online classes

Because who the hell wants to wake up to actually walk to class?! That's enough work in itself...

2. Snow days

We all think these are such a brilliant idea when one snowflake appears… Just think, when that happens and we have a real job, we will still be expected to show up to work.

3. Free gym access

No need to pay for a gym membership out of your own pocket. Your school's got your back. Take advantage of this because the alcohol and fast food weight will catch up to you.

4. Networking

You go into college with a blank canvas. It's a whole new realm of people that you have the opportunity to meet. Create study groups in your classes to get to know your classmates. Go to that activity that you wouldn't imagine you'd ever go to. Everyone you meet has a purpose. It is important to be nice to any and everyone because you never know who or where you'll be working for in the future.

5. Student discounts

Bring your student ID with you everywhere. It is the golden ticket to having more money in your pocket.

6. Amazon Prime

Free two-day shipping?? Free for 6 months and then half off??? Because I'm a student??? HECK TO THE YEAH!!!

7. Mid day parties

...Or “darties" as we all like to refer to them as. Not only should you be taking advantage of the beautiful weather outside, but adding in the party is definitely something that only happens in college. It's Tuesday afternoon. It's autumn and beautiful outside. What do you do? Yep, you grab a cold one and blare some music and darty. ...Not something that happens when you have to adult.

8. Breaks

Let's be real, we get a lot more days off than we give our colleges credit for. Not only do we get various national holidays off, but we also get a Fall Break, a Winter Break (which lasts at least a month might I add), a Spring Break, and a Summer Break. Call me crazy, but these breaks are not something we will get back.

9. Living in the same place as all your friends

When would we ever get this dream to become reality again? We won't. Come graduation, all your friends will be finding jobs in new locations, some across the country and some even across the globe. Take advantage of all of you being located in the same spot for these four years.

10. Free tickets to sporting events

As a student at your college, you have the ability to receive free tickets to all or at least a select amount of your university sponsored sporting events.

11. Making our own schedule

We get to make our class schedule around our sleep and meal times. Don't want to wake up early for class? You don't have to! Want to schedule all your classes with your friends? Go right ahead!

12. Free time

I'm not saying there will be tons, but there will definitely be more than post graduation. Take advantage of that. Once you're in the real world, free time will become a thing of the past.

13. ...Just the word free in general

If I hear the word free, I'm there… Especially if it's food. People know how to draw college students in with two words. FREE. FOOD.

14. Making mistakes

Slept through your class this morning? Had a rough night out last night? College is very accepting of those mistakes, but don't get too used to it. Soon enough, you have to own up to your mistakes in your career, and there will be less leniency for some “whoopsies."

15. Sleeping in

Honestly, this is why God gave us weekends and sometimes a free week day. Adulting does not account for sleep. Be thankful you got to stay in bed all day today.

16. Late Night Taco Bell

With time, our metabolism will slow down. And I mean waaay down. During your four years, this may be a drunken habit, but it will have to come to an end at some point.

17. Live abroad without making your bank account cry

We are talking about the opportunity to live abroad for a few months with it being the same price as our tuition or a little over. How in the WORLD (haha, no pun intended) would we ever have this opportunity again and it not interfere with anything else we have going on?!

18. Naps

College is so accepting of sleep. Have a break between classes? Why would you do homework? A nap is always the answer.

19. Living the “I just rolled out of bed" lifestyle

No need to dress up for class… Everyone wakes up 10 minutes before they have to leave. No shame.

Cover Image Credit: Author's photo

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An Open Letter To Those Not Graduating On Time

Graduating college in any number of years is an accomplishment to be proud of.
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To the person that isn't graduating on time,

It sucks, and I won't lie to you and tell you it doesn't. The day you walk out of Advising, head hanging down because you aren't going to finish in four years, makes you feel ashamed of yourself. You did well in high school; you were always told you were smart, expected to be smart, so why couldn't you make it out in four years like you were supposed to?

You know you're going to have to tell your family, so you begin preparing yourself for the worst reactions possible. And telling your friends you won't be graduating with them will only add to that sense of hopelessness.

Soon, you'll see photos and posts from people you left high school with, talking about graduation and the wonderful lives they are about to begin in their new careers. You'll wonder how they did it, and you'll feel like a failure.

But you're not.

Graduating from college is a huge deal. It really is. And it will be no less of an accomplishment in five, six, or 10 years.

"According to the Department of Education, fewer than 40 percent of students who enter college each year graduate within four years, while almost 60 percent of students graduate in six years. At public schools, less than a third of students graduate on time."

Things happen. You might change your major. You might have financial troubles. You may take a year off to figure out exactly what you want to do. That's okay. Take all the time you need. The real world and your career will still be there whenever you graduate.

Guess what else. Your family will still love you, and your friends will still support you. Give them some credit. Your loved ones want you to be happy and successful. Don't get me wrong, they may be upset at first, but give them a chance. Odds are, when the emotions settle, they will go right back to asking how classes are going. And when you do get the news that you'll be graduating, they will celebrate with you, and they will be there in the crowd, waiting for you to walk across that stage.

Graduation will happen. If you attend your class and study hard, it will happen. There is no reason to rush. Just do your best. Try your hardest. Take classes when you can. Just by doing that, you're doing more than so many others are able to do.

"Among 18 countries tracked by the OECD, the United States finished last (46 percent) for the percentage of students who completed college once they started it."

You'll get there. Take your time. Enjoy your classes. Find new interests. Study what you love. Embrace opportunities. Study abroad. Take that weird elective class. This is your time to take in everything the world has to offer. Take advantage of that. You'll graduate when you graduate, filled with pride and wisdom. And when they call your name, and you walk across that stage, hold your head up high, because you've earned every bit of your degree.

Graduating from college takes countless hours of studying, long hours in the library, and a tremendous amount of dedication. Don't add pressure to yourself by setting a timer. It is completely okay to graduate when you graduate, and it is still something to be proud of.

Best Wishes,
A woman who is finally graduating

Cover Image Credit: http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/dam/assets/120417041415-education-graduation-cap-story-top.jpg

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I Took the MCAT and This is What Happened

The MCAT is one of the hardest things I have ever completed in my life, and I still do not know if I passed.

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I started studying for the MCAT during winter break, December 2018, and then I sat for my test on April 13, 2019. Going into my test, I was very nervous. I was scared that I would be late for my test, so I showed up an hour before the doors even opened. I was worried that I would get too hungry during the 8 hour exam, so I brought my whole fridge along with me. Basically, a lot of worrying was going on. However, I began to calm down as all the positive messages from friends and family starting rolling in before I walked into my testing site. Their positive vibes soothed my anxieties, and actually gave me some confidence as I walked into the exam…Then the first section began. The first section one tackles on the MCAT is chemistry and physics (C/P). Though this section had never been my strong suit, I have been able to do okay due to my strengths in chemistry (not so much in physics). Then, the MCAT royally screwed me over by making this section basically all Physics. It wasn't enough that physics passages give me the worse anxiety, but they were so calculation filled that I wasted so much valuable time trying to do math. It got to the point where I just guessed on most of the math questions to get to questions I had a better chance of answer.

I took my ten minute break and felt more exhausted than I ever have in any of the previous practice full lengths I've taken. Thankfully, the next section is CARS, critical analysis and reasoning is my favorite section – and I blew through this with no problems. It was kind of a nice break after the roller-coaster that was the C/P section.

By the end of CARS I was starving and so very thankful for the thirty minute break, but for some reason (because I was scared of running out of time) I went back to start the next section, biology and biochem (B/B), after only 15 minutes. Thankfully! It wasn't the worse decision because the B/B section was not off standard from what I was used to. I actually found many questions to be very straightforward and easy, which is kind of scary.

Finally, my 8 hour exam day was almost over. I just had one more section, and it was the one I was least worried about, Psychology and Sociology (P/S). As a psychology major, I've had to do the least studying for this section, but the MCAT threw things at me that I don't even know how to process. I would read some questions and immediately think of an answer, only for the answer to not be any of the answer choices. I'm really nervous to see how my results turn out for this section next month.

In the end, I put a lot of hard work studying for the MCAT. It is definitely an intimidating task, but it is very much achievable with organization, determination, and large amounts of caffeine. Now starts the dreaded one month wait till I get my results!

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