• Vrutika Soneji

How to Effectively Budget in College

College is an expensive part of life. Paying for tuition, room and board, books and supplies, transportation, and other expenses can be a big hit on your bank account. Fortunately, there are many ways to save and earn money in college to pay off student loans, as discussed in a recent webinar hosted by BeyondDreams and FLI Raleigh. The full webinar is on the BeyondDreams YouTube channel, but here are a few summarized tips and tricks!



Ways to Save Money as a College Student

1. Buy Used Textbooks

Many students spend an average of $1,000 a year on textbooks, which is an excessive amount. Instead of buying at the full price, you can rent books or buy them from bookstores for more affordable options.


2. Public Transportation

Transportation is often free, usually around the campus. It is offered by your college as long as you show your student ID.


3. Take Advantage of Your Student ID

Many stores, restaurants, and online services offer student discounts if you provide a valid student ID/email. Some examples include Amazon Prime and Spotify subscriptions, discounts to movie theaters, museums, sporting events, and even free access to Microsoft Office. This is a win-win situation, as you get high-quality services for an incredible discount.


4. Look for Events on Campus

Although classes are now at home and colleges are not holding large events because of safety concerns, there will be more opportunities in the future. Going to events on campus allows you to meet more people, learn more about the colleges you want to attend, and have a chance to get some free souvenirs. Keep an eye out for such opportunities to try something new!


Ways to Earn Money as a College Student

1. Get a Local Job on Campus

Small businesses and restaurants on campus are usually hiring. Working at such places is a great way to give back to the community and earn some money while staying close to your dorm or residence.


2. Research Opportunities

There are countless different types of research opportunities that can be a perfect fit for you. Not only do you get to earn money, but you also receive valuable experience and learn a lot more about the field you are interested in. To find a research opportunity, you can google search “research opportunities for undergraduate students” at the college you attend. Another method is to contact a professor who teaches a course related to the research field you want to study.


3. Internships

While they are similar to research opportunities, internships involve working more with the company outside of your college. You may be paid an hourly wage and earn practical working experience. Both internships and research opportunities are great ways to build your resume and make money.


4. Resident Advisor

A resident advisor’s job is to oversee their dorm and ensure that all the students are comfortable in a social environment by conducting events. If you are very social and like to get out of your comfort zone, this is a perfect role for you!


5. Tutor Students

As a tutor, you teach students a subject that you find interesting. You can even teach a passion of yours, and the opportunities are endless! It is a great way to earn money by doing something you love.


There are countless ways to save and earn money as a student, but here are just a few to outline the endless possibilities available. College can take a big chunk of money, but having effective strategies to save money will make sure you still enjoy the experience while not paying extra unnecessarily. Additionally, earning money can be enjoyable when you incorporate your passions. Hopefully, these tips and tricks can help you save money while enjoying college.



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