Once again, as college students, we will have a full month off of school. For some, this is a time to sit on the couch and annoy your parents with requests for more hot chocolate. For others, it’s an opportunity to be productive. Here are some ways to use your holiday time productively, and avoid being swallowed by the Couch Monster.
1.Get a job
If you enjoyed your summer employment, consider working there again this winter. Otherwise, there are tons of seasonal and major-specific jobs that are available close to your hometown.
With the extra money you earn, you could start saving for an awesome spring break, pay cash for next semester’s textbooks, or even reduce the interest on your loan.
2. Look for scholarships
It would be a great time to complete Missouri State University’s General & Departmental scholarship form. Otherwise, you could search for scholarships online.
3. Fill out the FAFSA
After January 1st you can file the FAFSA for 2014. In order to complete the FAFSA, visit fafsa.ed.gov and follow the on-screen directions.
4.Sell stuff online
Learn how to use Amazon. It can be a great way to buy gifts. Also, you could use it as an alternative to buy and sell your textbooks.
1. Make sure to prepare before you shop. If your holiday shopping list is extensive, it is crucial to set a budget and stick to it. Remember, this is supposed to be a happy season of giving. Try to avoid debt and, if necessary, get creative with your holiday gifts.
2. Similar to the previous suggestion, it is important to stick to the budget and simply buy what you are intending to purchase. Many stores attempt to entice individuals to overspend by offering special deals and discounts. Avoid the traps of purchasing items for yourself, especially if it is out of your budget.
3. Are you a self-proclaimed shopaholic? If so, it might be worth bringing a friend or other accountability partner that can help you avoid overspending.
Whether you need to meet scholarship requirements or just want to lend a helping hand, the holiday season is a wonderful time to volunteer. Many organizations would love to have extra help collecting donations or possibly even offer some sort of future career-related volunteer opportunity. If you are interested, try visiting volunteermatch.org or use a search engine as well as word of mouth to find an opportunity.
Speaking of scholarship requirements, don’t forget that your GPA might need to meet a relatively high standard. Therefore, you could review some of the material you struggled with over the past semester or possibly start preparing for your spring classes.
Remember that winter break is supposed to be a recovery period between semesters. So, it would be wise to catch up on some sleep and just have fun. Remember to enjoy the little things and continue to build strong relationships with friends and family.
Happy Holidays from MSU Real LIFE!
If you have any future money-related questions, feel free to contact the
MSU Real L.I.F.E. peer-financial counselors or visit them in Carrington 419.