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Prepping for a Summer Abroad: Logistics Edition


Jun 6, 2011
Experience has taught me things that the people whose excitement I share as our departure date rapidly approaches have yet to learn. Luckily, I can split my study abroad knowledge into three categories of preparation: what you’ve got ahead, what you’re leaving behind and what to bring along. What you’ve got ahead: Being overwhelmed by the stuff you have to do before you leave can block your ability to be excited and grateful for the coming opportunity. Prevent this by finding out everything you can about your destination. Research the city where you’ll be staying and look up all the oddball entertainment in whatever genre entices you to get a real picture of what’s in store for you. If there’s a prep course, don’t miss a single moment of it. What you’re leaving behind: Sit down a [...]
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66 months ago 0 comments

For the short time you’ll be at orientation, you’ll come away with one million impressions. Here are some things I wish I knew before my orientation: Don’t over pack. Most orientations are only a few days so there is no need to bring anything more than a backpack with shorts and a few t-shirts. You’ll probably be snagging some school attire, too, so save room! Don’t expect to meet your [...]

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Hello everyone! I am really excited to be a virtual intern at Scholarships.com and look forward to writing for you and, in turn, hearing from all of you in the next few months. Here’s my story: I began my college career at Alexandria Technical College and received my associate degree in applied science degree in computer voice networking. Unfortunately, I was laid off twice in the last three [...]

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So, you've finally chosen your major and are wondering if you should choose a minor as well. Generally, most minors require between 12 and 30 credits to complete (that’s about four to 10 extra classes). Obviously your major is much more important than your minor, as declaring a minor is not a necessary step to graduation, but pairing your major with a related minor may just give you the edge you [...]

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Spring semester is finally over...feels good, right? But before you start making those summer plans, consider whether or not summer school will be part of them. Here are some dos and don’ts to help you make your decision. Do go to summer school if you’re a transfer student. It’s likely all of your classes did not transfer over from your old school to your new one. If you take summer classes, [...]

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The transition from high school to college is most evident to students when they realize they’ll no longer be coddled in cozy classes of 20 students or less. Lecture halls with 300-plus students are the norm at most major universities where classes tend to be impersonal, relationships with professors are typically nonexistent and students feel more like numbers than people. So for those who [...]

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Regardless of whether you enjoyed living at home or how excited you are to move out, you will be homesick in some capacity your first time living away at school. I had never been more excited in my life than when I was going to finally be able to leave home – I had strict parents and although I was very independent, I did not have the freedom I wanted – but once I did and found myself going [...]

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Hi everyone! Just a few days ago, I landed back in my hometown of Baltimore, Maryland after a long, adventurous school year in Los Angeles. I was at California State University, Northridge as a participant in the National Student Exchange program and now that the program is over, I will be returning to my school, Towson University. Originally, I didn't want to go to Towson. My choice school [...]

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It’s important to s-t-r-e-t-c-h your money as far as it will go when putting yourself through college and one way to do this is by exploring your options for buying and selling textbooks. Your campus bookstore is the most obvious option but it's also the most expensive. One good thing about campus bookstores is that some will allow books and other school-related items like notebooks and [...]

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My name is Cameron Pybus and I’m privileged to be one of Scholarship.com’s newest virtual interns. I’ve just finished my junior year at Texas A&M and have also just returned from my study abroad semester in Italy. I am majoring in environmental design or architecture and plan to attend graduate school in the fall of 2012. Architecture and Texas A&M go hand in hand for me because they are [...]

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College classes, whether taken online or in person, may all seem to be the same. Both types require you to read, write papers, take tests and participate in some way but there is a big difference in the lifestyle that you can lead when you take online classes instead of taking traditional classes on campus. I have personally taken both online and traditional classes, experienced the [...]

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Ah, college graduation. It’s a time filled with incredible hope, fear and potentially – depending on your college’s tradition and its willingness to pony up the cash – a famous celebrity commencement speaker. But paying for commencement speakers won’t be happening in Jersey for long: Last week, New Jersey lawmakers proposed a bill that would bar the payment for commencement speakers at public [...]

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So many of us (myself included) feel safe behind the veil of technology. Whether it's a Facebook profile, ultra-organized email or Twitter, let’s face it: It’s much easier to be the person you want to be when you carefully craft it out and spell check it twice. You can appear any way you want to...as long as you don’t have to think on the spot. I'm not trying to say that having a solid grasp on [...]

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Deciding what to major in is an important and complicated decision. With that in mind, you may wonder why anyone would decide to take on two majors. Double majors can be great for someone who is stuck between two options they find equally interesting. It can also be great for those who aren’t feeling challenged enough by the classes in the major they’ve already declared. Here are some things to [...]

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Summer breaks vary from college student to college student. Some work multiple jobs to help defray tuition costs, others intern or volunteer in their field of study and a select few sit by the pool and do absolutely nothing. Regardless of what they accomplish this summer – a semester paid in full, a professional reference or a tan – this student’s “What I Did On My Summer Vacation” essay is [...]

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My name is Thomas Lee and I am a recent graduate of Methodist University with a BA in political science and journalism. I chose Methodist because it had the distinction of being both a university and a private school. When I first arrived at Methodist for the campus tour, I found the atmosphere very inviting. The campus was located next to a golf course near a tranquil river and most of the [...]

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For many students fresh out of high school, the idea of going to a community college is not appealing. After all, one of the most exciting aspects of attending college is living on campus away from home, right? Well, living on campus may not be all it's cracked up to be. Although few people would argue that universities' clubs, fraternities and parties are superior to anything offered at a [...]

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When the campus dormitories have run their course and you are ready to have a room bigger than a closet, living in off-campus housing can be an exciting experience. Be forewarned, however, that you may have to deal with pests. No, I’m not talking about rude, unkempt roommates but insects, rodents and other undomesticated animals. As a college student, you may have never dealt with a pest on [...]

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On days like today, it’s hard to get out of bed, let alone head out to an early morning class. True, your professor may not notice you’re missing from their 8 a.m. 300-person lecture now but it could get more difficult to skip class in the near future. Case in point: De Montfort University in Leicester, England is considering monitoring student attendance via electronic chips in their ID [...]

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It was a Monday and my inbox was filled with the usual bulk messages colleges send to make prospective freshmen feel special. Or so I thought. There was one email in particular that looked like an invitation to a freshman event but I didn't bother reading it because I knew I couldn’t travel miles to a school I probably had no chance of getting into. That night, however, I opened the email [...]

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During my senior year in high school, I sent out applications not only to schools in my home state of California but to schools in Rhode Island, Washington and even England. I ultimately decided to stay in California because while going to a school in a different state or country sounded appealing and fun, it was just too unrealistic for me. Why? Location mattered. Attending college in a [...]

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Here at Scholarships.com, all of our resources are geared toward helping students prepare for and afford college educations...not leave them behind. That being said, this new award probably won’t be popping up in our database any time soon. Peter Thiel, the co-founder of PayPal and the first outside investor in Facebook, announced the inaugural recipients of the Thiel Fellowship, a program [...]

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As a veteran PC user and a current Mac enthusiast, I can advise you on both sides of the PC vs. Mac argument better than those silly commercials ever could. Purchasing your computer can be one of the most crucial decisions in your college career. Clearly, it is one of the most expensive purchases, but also it is something you will use every single day so you need to make sure it is right for [...]

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Have you ever watched “MythBusters,” the show that scientifically tests myths and urban legends, like are elephants really afraid of mice or is it possible to walk on water? Now, I may not have a crash test dummy named Buster, but I do have two years of dorm life, on- and off-campus adventures and brutal assignments under my belt. Therefore, I bring to you "MythBusters: The College [...]

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If you have a Facebook account, you have probably been tagged in at least one photo. It could be an image of you participating in an extracurricular activity, attending a sporting event with friends or maybe even elementary school you sporting bangs that Mom cut with kitchen scissors but people looking at the picture will know who it is they are looking at. Many universities, however, haven’t [...]

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As a tutor, the question that I hear most from my students is “How do I study?” The answer depends on which learning style suits you best because there is no such thing as one-size-fits-all learning. The majority of people are visual learners. They benefit from recopying or making their own notes, tend to be good at spelling and can remember where certain text is located on a page. It’s a [...]

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