Wednesday, 23 August 2017

What's in my bag for college ?

Hi everyone,

First of all I want to say a big congratulations to everyone who got there leveling cert results last week. Sixth year for me was the most stressful year of my life as it is for most people so take comfort in knowing that it is behind you and everything from here on in should be easier. For those of you who did get offers on Monday woohoo go you !!! This post can help you to make  list of what you really need for college day to day life. 

It's that time of year again back to school haul's are everywhere. I don't know about you but they are my favourite posts to read or videos to watch on Youtube. I love buying stationary I am a little bit obsessed but this year I really tried not to over buy. Pretty much everything I did buy I will be bringing with me everyday so I decided to do a 'what's in my bag' post. After three years of college I finally know exactly what I need and hopefully this will help some people starting first year college to cut out what you don't need to buy.

The first thing your going to need is a folder to hold all the hand outs and notes you are going to get in class. I didn't bring a folder last year and ended up with missing notes or damaged notes. This is particularly annoying if I've dragged my lazy ass out of bed for class and still don't have the notes because I lost them. I recommend to bring a thin folder like the one above from TKMax which was 6.99 for a pack of six. When I get home I will put the notes in there proper folders depending on the class.

These are the assignment folders I will be using this semester. Last semester I actually used the one's from the first picture but basically my lecturer's kept the folders and that worked out kind of expensive so this year I found these ones for only 42 cent each in Sostrene Greene so even if some get taken or lost I won't mind as much. These are a great way of making sure the condition of your assignments are good when your handing them up and also that pages won't be lost.

I am in love with these notebooks from TKMax they look like Ted Baker copies. They were 5.99 each. I will be using these as lab notebooks so all my records are together. What's really cool about these is the calendar on the front page a space at the top of each page for you to put the date.

Now for the one piece of stationary you really need above all else. A simple refill pad. This is what I use to take all of my notes. Then I simply rip out the pages and put them in there class folder at home, I use one poly pocket per lecture so everything stays together. It saves you carrying loads of notebooks everyday and also I find it easier for studying to know where each lecture ended. Any refill pad will do just fine but I really like these ones from TKMax for 8.99. It saves the notebook from being damaged and you can remove and replace the refill pad when it runs out, plus the design is pretty. I just stuck some post it tabs on the inside as well.

A good diary can change your life and make college so much easier especially if it is your first semester in college because there is so much to remember. I have talked about diary's in previous posts so I won't now. This is a agenda which I got from TKMax for 8.99.

Let's get down to basics, pencil cases, pens they are all very standard. For most students you will probably only need a blue or black pen, a stapler for assignments and a highlighter. You will definitely need a lock for your locker, bring it on the first day to make sure you get a good locker. The unnecessary bits that always come in handy are a pencil parer, paper clips and some colored pens to make your notes more appealing. 

For STEM student's you will need a ruler, pencils, rubber, goggles depending on your labs, tables book and most definitely a scientific calculator.

I also showed my bag which I will be using this semester in my last post. It was 50 euro in Parfois, It has separate pockets for my laptop and books so I can easily find them and keep them safe.

Good luck to everyone starting college soon.


Saturday, 12 August 2017

5 Items To Invest In For College

When it comes to back to school shopping it is easy to loose sight of what you think you need vs what you actually need. After three years I have finally worked out exactly what I need for going back to college. I now only invest in products that will last me until I finish college. Listed below are five products that I could not live without for college. That doesn't mean they have to cost a fortune. The cheapest item is only 6.99 euro and the most expensive is about 70 euro.

1. Diary

A good diary can make your life so much easier. I have always relied on a diary to keep track of assignment due dates, homework and when exams start. It did take me a while to find a diary that fit all my needs. I wanted a large size diary with a monthly calendar and individual days as well. Last year I used the 365 happy days planner but felt 60 euro was a bit too much to pay for a diary. This year I found a agenda in TK Max for 6.99 euro. Only down side was that I bought it in July so six months were already gone, but I still think it was very cheap for six months. It's also very pretty and matches my stationary very well, and it comes with stickers and funky art work inside all drawn by female artists. #girlpower

2. Bag/ Bag pack

This is probably the single most important thing you need for college. Having the right bag makes life so much easier, something I only learned this year. I used to use bag packs because the fit my laptop and notebooks but found I had to take everything out to get to my purse or phone. This year I got this laptop bag from Parfois. It has separate pockets for notebooks and my laptop, as well as space for my purse chargers etc. The bag cost 50 euro and also comes in black and grey.

3. One Good Textbook

Don't get caught up in buying all the text books on the recommended reading list. Typically there will be one book that will cover most topics. Last year I bought one chemistry book that covers beginners to intermediate chemistry. It covered me for most of my classes this year and last year. I bought it because it was recommended by my lecturers and although there were many copies in the library I just used it so much I wanted my own copy. The book cost between 70 and 80 euro in shops but I got it on amazon for 50 euro.

4. Student Leap Card

Having a student leap card is the best way to save money in college. You could easily save 30 euro a week by having a student card and they only cost 10 euro to get.

5. Printer

This is where the invest comes in. Your college should have printers available to use. My college charges 5 cent per page which is pretty decent especially if you can't afford a printer at the time. I found it more convenient to have one at home, often times the printers in college wouldn't work. My printer cost 70 euro because it has a scanner and copier built in. You can buy second hand ones very cheap on done deal and other sites as well as deals on amazon.

Hopefully this helps some people with savings, don't forget to enjoy the rest of the summer while it lasts.


Monday, 17 July 2017

4 common Linkedin mistakes

Hi guys,

I decided to do something a little different today. Summer is officially in full swing and no one including myself wants to worry about school lunches, studying or anything of that sort. Instead I will be focusing the next month or so on things you can do over the summer to help you for starting college.

For those of you who may not be familiar with the site it is the worlds largest professional network. Helping to connect companies and professionals from all over the world. I myself hadn't heard of the site till my first year in college. Basically it is a way to connect with businesses and employers, and highlight yourself in a professional way. While your in college it can help connect you to businesses and let you research more about companies or can even help you when applying for jobs. I always link my Linkedin on my CV it shows you are professional and prepared as well as giving an employer a short list of your skills.

It can take a while to get used to, and starting a profile seems a lot more work than it actually is. Below are a list of the top four common mistakes people make at the start.

1. Adding irrelevant people

Quality is always better than quantity ! Grow your friends by adding people you work with, are in college with or if you know people in companies you would be interested in working for. Linkedin will then start sending you people you may know based on what information you have given on your profile, your friends and the companies you follow. It is also important that you follow potential employers on Linkedin especially if you link your profile on your CV because then employers will see you have previously shown an interest in the company.

2. Unprofessional photo

Your photo is the first thing people will see when they view your profile so it needs to be professional. If you link your profile to your CV its more than likely the first time an employer will be able to put a face to the name so make it count. Try stay away from group photos, dark lighting, and graduation pictures, stick to a clean white background and from the shoulders up.

3. Leaving blanks

I know it may seem like a huge time consuming task when your first start. There are so many boxes to fill in, find connections and follow groups but there is a reason to fill in each one. The more information you give the easier it is for Linkedin to match you with jobs, organizations and people you may know. It really does make your profile more appealing and professional as well.

Employers look at your Linkedin to get the most information about you in the quickest way possible. The headings on Linkedin are specifically chosen for this reason, your education, skills, and work experience. Make sure to also include the skills which make you applicable for the job somewhere on your profile. You can do this by adding a summary about yourself eg. a people person/ good communicator or in work experience/ education eg. trained in mass spectrometry.

                                                               4. Reviews

Having reviews from people help support what you've just said you can do above. They could be colleagues, lecturers or other professionals. You don't need a million reviews from your friends saying how nice of a person you are stick strictly to the skills and attributes.