Tag Archives: scholarship search

Book Review: Share or Die – Voices of the Get Lost Generation

I was recently given a copy of the anthology – Share or Die – Voice of the Get Lost Generation in the Age of Crisis. The book is a collection of stories, mostly written by young adults, about what it is like to grow up in Generation Y (Born after 1985) and try to find employment post-graduation.

I don’t normally review books here at Money for College Project, but this book is an exceptionally interesting read. Many of our readers are in Generation Y, or are just outside of it and can find very relevant lessons in this book. If you are interested, you can pick up up here: Share or Die: Voice of the Get Lost Generation in the Age of Crisis

Never a Better Time to Become and Entrepreneur

I have said this many times before: During college, or the period right after graduation, is the best time to start a business. Your expenses and responsibilities are as low as they will likely ever ben in your life, and a business started in your early twenties can set the tone for the rest of your life/career.

Gen Y is graduating into a very unique economic climate. The world is trying to upright itself after a global economic recession and traditional jobs markets are still faltering. The barriers of entry to starting a business and becoming an entrepreneur are lower than they have ever been.

The Internet has brought the world together, and therefore you are able to connect with like minded people from around the world to share ideas, brainstorm, and plan. You can reach targeted customers quickly and efficiently through online advertising and social media. You can sell digital products online or become an affiliate for someone else’s products. Start-up companies are even partnering with large corporations to head their research and development wings. Did you catch that? Large corporations are outsourcing the future of their business to the sharp minds of Gen Y!

It is our time!

Pack Up and Travel the World

Another main point in many of the stories shared in this book is the call to to pack-up your things and travel while you can. There is a lot than can be learned from travel, and from personal experience, I can attest that many important life lessons and perspectives can be gained by getting outside of your comfort zone. In particular, I learned a great deal about how the U.S. is viewed in other parts of the world.

I think it is very important to understand that there is value, beauty, and power in the world outside the shores of the U.S. It is very easy to get an superior imperialist attitude living here, and this perspective will aid you in your career moving forward. it may also open up opportunities to connect with new and exciting people and places. It might even turn into a job if you meet the right people along the way!

The Bottom Line

graduating from college and striking out on your own in 2013 is not easy, but there is hope. In fact, the future is brighter than it has been for some time and now is as good a time as any to start your future.

Start a business, travel the world, pursue your goals, just please….don’t sit around and feel sorry for yourself.

Get up and make it happen!

What Happens if I Don’t Make My Student Loan Payment?

First, I think it is very important to dispel a common myth about student loans: They are required to be repaid, and they can ruin your financially if they are ignored!

If you don’t make your student loan payment or make your payment late, your loan may eventually go into default. If you default on your student loan, that status will be reported to credit bureaus, and your credit rating and future borrowing ability will be damaged. In addition, legal action can be taken to require payment through garnishment of wages and withholding of tax refunds.

Unfortunately, I meet too many students who admit they did not realize the money they were receiving for college was from student loans, and that they would someday have to repay these student loans. This is a heartbreaking realization, but also one that is easily avoidable.

Don’t ignore the fine print on your college financial aid award letter!

With that said, let’s suppose that you do understand your need to repay your student loans but you run into financial difficulties and are struggling to repay your monthly loan payment.

What Happens if I Don’t Make My Student Loan Payment?

The Good News

Student loans have the most flexible and generous repayment terms of any other loan on the market.

The Bad News

Student loans cannot be discharged in bankruptcy so you will need to eventually figure out a way to repay them.

Where to Start?

First, you will need to determine what type of student loans you are repaying. There are a number of student loans, and each of them will likely have a different repayment servicer.

Here is a handy chart from the Department of Education:

Which Organizations Handle Which Loans

Type of Loan

Whom to Pay

Direct Loans and FFEL loans owned by ED You will make your payments to your loan servicer. Your loan servicer will provide you with information about your repayment terms and your repayment start date.
FFEL loans not owned by ED You will make your payments to your lender, the organization that made the loan initially. The lender could be a bank, credit union, or other lending institution. Your lender will provide you with information about your repayment terms and your repayment start date.
Federal Perkins Loans Your loan servicer will most likely be the school you were attending when you received the loan, but in some cases, the school will have a separate organization handle the billing and other services for your Perkins Loan. Contact the school about making Perkins Loan payments.

As indicated in the chart above there are three main types of student loans: Federal, Private, and Campus Based. Each of these loans will have different methods for handling payment arrangements so it is imperative that you know which loans you have.

Second, you will need to evaluate your own financial situation to determine if your financial troubles will only cause you to be late for one month, or if you anticipate this to be an extended financial situation. If you just lost your job for example, you would treat this differently than if you spent too much on clothes this month.

If you expect your financial troubles to extend beyond one month, then you should consider applying for a financial hardship forbearance. You will need to contact your lender or repayment servicer and fill out their form to begin this application process. The key is to begin this process as soon as possible. Waiting until the day your payment is due to begin this process will not help you!

Third, you should consider a loan consolidation if you have multiple student loans to repay each month. Many student complain about forgetting to pay a student loan each month. If you have multiple student loans that are repaid to different lenders, this can be confusing. One way to alleviate some of this confusion is to consolidate your loans into one monthly payment. This allows you to have one payment to focus on each month and can generally allow you to pay your loans off faster.

You should be careful however, as consolidating your student loans also may cause you to lose deferment and forbearance options in the future.

The Bottom Line

It is important to understand that student loans do have to be repaid and they can hurt your credit if they are not repaid.

You have many options available to you and all of these can be accessed with a simple phone call or a visit to your lender’s website.

The worst thing you can do is shrink into a hole and hope that your financial trouble goes away. There are people willing to help, but they cannot help you unless you reach out t them!

College Student’s Trash is Every Man’s Treasure

college trash

College students throw away millions of dollars of “trash” at the end of each semester.

Rather than packing up their dorm room valuables into their vehicle and hauling them back home for the summer, many students choose to simply throw out their unwanted items.

This trash routinely includes items that are in perfect working order. Furniture is one of the most common items that lands in trash heaps. However lamps, alarm clocks, electronic devices, pots and pans, rugs, sports equipment, textbooks, clothes, and a number of other things also accumulate in dumpsters.

How Can You Take Advantage of This?

First of all, please understand that I am not normally a proponent of “dumpster diving”. I think there are much more efficient uses of your time if you plan to :buy low and sell high” to make some extra cash. However, there are too many legal, sanitary, and emotional issues that normally accompany traditional dumpster diving.

Raiding a dumpster in the back of a college dorm however is a completely different issue. They don’t throw away old egg shells and stale pasta in these dumpsters. It is not intended for trash. These dumpsters are generally made available by the college or university to collect unwanted items from students as they leave for the semester. Many of these items are then recycled or taken to the trash dump, but they present a wealth of opportunities if you can time your visit correctly.

First, you will need to find a end of semester move-out schedule for the college you wish to visit. This can typically be done very quickly through an online search of that organization’s website.

Second, you will need to contact the campus police on that campus to ensure that you would not be breaking the laws to go rummaging through their dumpsters. Depending on the location of the college that you visit you may have campus police present at the dumpster itself, or you may need to seek out the police headquarters to get your approval. In my experience, they are happy to approve this as long as you do not bother the college students or residents throwing away trash.

Third, you will need to scout out the dumpster locations. Typically these are placed right in front of or behind the main entrance to the dorm. They are generally large and many times, especially for larger dorms, have a gate on one end where you can easily walk into the dumpster. You should map out your route using a campus map, and ensure that you find all of the dumpster locations for the most effective search.

Finally, you should get there early on move-out day. Obviously you will not want to go if the weather is bad, as this will dramatically cut down on the quality of items that are thrown away. If you find a location where items are being tossed out, feel free to stay around and wait for something good to turn up!

Just a word of caution: Please remember not to take items directly from the residents however. Once they have left the items in the dumpster they are ok to grab, but you could get in trouble with the campus police if you begin approaching residents asking them for their belongings.

This is an excellent way to find items to re-sell. The best thing is that there are generally very high quality items being thrown out that you could then turn around and sell on Craigslist, Ebay, or have a yardsale of your own. The possibilities are endless!

Photo credit

Win a $500 College Scholarship

Vista Health Solutions is giving away a $500 scholarship to one student who will be attending a public or private university in the Fall of 2013. To apply, applicants must complete the form below and submit an essay on the topic of:

“How I will stay in control of my health during my college years”

Applicant Requirements: To be eligible, all applicants must be planning to attend college in the Fall of 2013 as an undergraduate student. High school and undergraduate students are welcome to apply. Please include at the top of your essay your name, current school attended, current grade level and GPA.

Essay Requirements: Your college years are both joyful and stressful at the same time. With your new found independence comes responsibility. Too often college students put their healthy lifestyle on the back burner. How will you promote a healthy body and mind during your college years? Write an essay of 1,000 to 1,500 words explaining how you will take charge of your health.

Deadline: All essays must be submitted by August 1, 2013. The winning essay will be selected and announced on the Vista Health Solutions website on August 15th, 2013.

 

 

 

 

[button link=”http://www.nyhealthinsurer.com/scholarship-application/#wpcf7-f7722-p7720-o1″ color=”orange” newwindow=”yes”] Apply[/button]

How to Create Your Own Scholarships

One of the most exciting times of high school is your senior year when you get to apply for scholarships. Forget prom, pep rallies, and Friday night lights; this is where the real fun is!

You are asking individuals, businesses, and non-profit organizations to take a stake in your future. You are asking them to support you financially as you pursue your educational goals. This is one of the few times in your life where it is perfectly acceptable to ask for a hand-out from people who are happy to give them! While this process may be intimidating and frustrating at times, it can also be exhilarating.

One of the most common questions that I get here through the blog is “Where can I find more scholarships?”

I have answered that questions through other posts here and here.

Today however, I want to look at this question through a different lens.

Create Your Own Scholarships

Some of the most successful business owners are the ones who bootstrapped their own business, and built their entire empire from the ground up. They did not wait for anyone else to hand them a job, they created their own.

This same mindset can be applied to creating scholarships. Rather than applying to hundreds of scholarships that already exist, and often have applicant pools in the hundreds (or even thousands), why not drastically increase your chances of winning a scholarship and go directly to the source.

Many businesses spend millions of dollars each year on research, development and marketing. This is an untapped resource for college scholarships that nobody is utilizing.

You should start by identifying businesses that operate in a field you are interested in. For example, if you wish to go into pharmacy, then you could consider pharmaceutical manufacturing companies. If you want to go into English, then you could target publishing and printing companies. If you are a construction science major, then you could target construction companies. Architecture students should target architecture and design firms. You get the idea…

I would suggest that you identify a list of at least 30 businesses.

You should then identify someone in the Human Resources office for each of these companies. These are often the folks who either manage any existing scholarship programs, or could get you in touch with the people who do manage these programs. Your goal is to set up an in-person meeting with someone from that company.

I would recommend that you do this in writing, followed up by a phone call. Much as you would do for an official interview. Again, your main goal is to get face time with this individual.

The Scholarship Proposal

Asking for money is not a simple task. Remember, your goal is to convince the executive that you meet with that you are worth their time, energy, and money. You will need to convince this person that your future is so valuable, and that you will work so hard, that they would be crazy not to invest in you.

You should treat this as an investment. You will need a scholarship proposal and a “business plan”.

What you will propose will depend on your field but should go something like this:

Hello Mr. Executive at fancy company I admire,

My name is DJ, and I am going to be a freshman in your industry in the upcoming Fall semester. I am really excited, but am still in need of additional finances to secure my college funding.

I have created a scholarship proposal for you, which I have brought with me today. I will harness the power of my entire sizable social media influence to thank you for what you are about to do for me. I will sing your praises to every person that I know. I will be an advocate for you on our campus. I will recommend interns in your industry come to work for you, I will invite representatives from your business to my college to present and to lecture. I will incorporate your company’s research and design into my college projects. I will come to work for you in the summer after my freshman and sophomore years. I will spend my spring break working on dedicated projects for your company. In return for this, I ask for your financial support to pursue my educational goals. For my time and effort, I feel that a scholarship of $5000 per academic year would be a sufficient agreement.

Follow-Through

Once your proposal has been submitted, you will likely have to negotiate. I can guarantee that you will get turned down at least once, but do not get discouraged! Could you imagine the possibilities if more than one business agreed to your proposal!

Obviously you would need to modify your efforts for each business (you cannot work during spring break in more than one place) but the principle is the same.

Once you get a business to agree to this proposal, you have to follow through on your promises.

The best thing about this agreement, is that a relationship of this nature could easily land you a job in the future. Imagine going through all of this effort for a company without even being a full-time employee.

If a company sees your worth and value prior to you graduating, they may try to snatch you into a full-time position once you are done with school.

The possibilities are endless.