How you can throw the best BBQ ever

In “BBQ tips and tricksHow to plan a cookout,” Ginny Gaylor here at the CengageBrainiac blog wrote on May 20, 2013, all about how to plan your cookout. “Nothing says fun quite like firing up the grill,” she noted, before giving tips on how to be a good host and what to do to prep your grill.

Throw a summer BBQ so you can show off your grilling skills. (Credit: Kristen)

Throw a summer BBQ so you can show off your grilling skills. (Credit: Kristen)

If you need BBQ ideas on organizing a grilling event on campus, check out that article, and then return for a look at a good BBQ menu for college students, including vegetarian BBQ ideas and some tips on BBQ safety. Read more

How to repair your reputation—online and in life

swimming-catWe all have things in our past that we aren’t proud of. And if you’re just returning from that wild spring break trip, it might not be a bad idea to see what’s been posted to your social media accounts. So how to repair your reputation, in life and online, before your wayward deeds come back to haunt you? There are things you can do to clean up and fix how the world perceives you, whether it is with your friends and family, potential employers or future co-workers. Read on for ways to dispose of the things that could affect your reputation.

The fundamentals of reputation repair

You’ve done something wrong—posted a picture from a raging party you shouldn’t have, lied to someone you care about or even broken a law. There are steps you can take to repair your reputation, although you can’t erase the misdeed. Read more

DIY party ideas for St. Patrick’s Day for college students

Credit: National Library of Ireland on the Commons

Credit: National Library of Ireland on the Commons

If you’re on a dry campus, you’ll have to forego the green beer, but that doesn’t mean you can’t throw a great St. Patrick’s Day party. Besides, don’t you think St. Patrick, that plucky saint who legendarily chased the snakes out of Ireland, would approve of a little do it yourself? Check out these DIY party ideas for a fun time celebrating the luck of the Irish.

What to eat

Need to put together a St. Patrick’s Day menu, but you’re not up for cooking corned beef and soda bread? There are plenty of options for low-tech appetizers and snacks you can make right in your dorm room. Read more

Alternative spring break: Benefits of volunteering or planning a staycation

Volunteering while in college can be beneficial in a number of ways. (Credit: Louvonia McClain)

Volunteering while in college can be beneficial in a number of ways. (Credit: Louvonia McClain)

So you’re looking ahead to spring break, but your budget does not support one of the awesome trips some of your peers are planning. You may not wind up on sandy beaches for your spring break, but you can look into the alternative spring break (ASB) opportunities offered on campus. There are many benefits to volunteering, and an ASB could be just what you’re looking for to gain positive experience. Because many ASBs still take place abroad, and do require fundraising to participate, they may still be beyond the limits of your wallet. No worries—you can find ways to volunteer close to home, or plan staycation activities to make sure your spring break is anything but ordinary. Read more

Spring break travel tips for college students—how to stay safe

By making spring break plans in advanced, you will reduce unnecessary stress.

By making spring break plans in advanced, you will reduce unnecessary stress.

Hitting the road with your best friends is a time-honored ritual, and spring break has quickly become the epitome of bonding for college students. But as important as the fun you plan to have is how to stay safe while you are relaxing and taking a break from classes. Read on for some spring break travel tips that will ensure your spring break is memorable for all the right reasons. And if you’re thinking “I know these already,” we get it. But it never hurts to be over-prepared!

Prep in advance

You don’t want to start out on your spring break journey stressed out because you aren’t prepared. A little advance thinking can save you from a major problem down the road. Read more

Dorm life: College tips for non-alcoholic party ideas

Take a break from your studies and host a party with your friends.

Take a break from your studies and host a party with your friends.

Winter is cold and boring, and cabin-fever is making you crazy. Why not throw a party? Combine that with your New Year’s Resolution to improve your student health by cutting down on the drinking and you can throw a fabulous non-alcoholic party in your dorm rooms. You could even get rid of some useless gifts you got this holiday season. Here are some tips for college parties that don’t involve alcohol.

“The problem with using drugs or drinking alcohol is the loss of control and the risk for dependence. When you drink or do drugs, you are no longer yourself. You can’t truly experience and enjoy anything while under the influence. Read more

What to do New Year’s Eve—things to do and fun places to go

Ring in the New Year by celebrating with your friends or family.

Ring in the New Year by celebrating with your friends or family.

It is almost that time—when the ball will drop, the horns will blow and we will all welcome in a new year. Not sure how to make the most of the ultimate party night? If you are looking for what to do New Year’s Eve, from things to do or fun places to go, read on so you can make the most of the countdown.

Where to go

If your crowd rolls with the jetsetters or you have simply decided to go all out this New Year’s Eve, you may be looking for the happening hot spot to throw down and celebrate the close of December. Read more

How to avoid holiday weight gain

Following the simplest of steps can help one overcome the common holiday weight gain.

Following the simplest of steps can help one overcome the common holiday weight gain.

Cookies and candies and cocoa … oh my! Nothing says the holidays like the extra five pounds of eggnog and peppermint chocolates that we pack on from Thanksgiving through the New Year. Want to not have to ask Santa for the next size up in pants? Here are some tips on how to avoid holiday weight gain that won’t turn you into a Grinch this season.

What’s the harm?

Maybe you are thinking that a couple of extra pounds are a small price to pay for enjoying all the yumminess that comes with the holiday season. Read more

Successful gift giving: Avoid these top 10 worst Christmas gifts

What to do with your worst Christmas presents. (Credit: Jeff Edney)

What to do with your worst Christmas presents. (Credit: Jeff Edney)

It’s that time again. What to give Aunt Sally, Cousin Bob or your dorm roommate? They’re probably thinking exactly the same thing about you. College students are notoriously low on cash, but you shouldn’t succumb to silly or cliché gifts. With a little effort, you can discover what will make your family and friends smile when they open your gift.

First, try to find an appropriate gift

The best thing to do is to match the person with the right gift, rather than getting something useless or inappropriate. How do you find the right gift? Alan Henry in “How can I give a good gift without being cliché?” on a Lifehacker.com December 3, 2012 post suggests some harmless stalking: “Check out what they’ve said on Facebook or Twitter. Read more

Gift giving ideas and money saving tips for holiday shopping on a budget

Homemade gifts are a great way to express your creative side. (Courtesy of aussiegall)

Homemade gifts are a great way to express your creative side. (Courtesy of aussiegall)

With only a few weeks of shopping days to go, you may be running out of gift giving ideas that you can afford. If your shopping list is larger than your budget, then you could use some money saving tips. It’s time to think outside the box, get creative and come up with alternatives to the usual store bought presents.

Simple gift giving ideas

There’s an old saying that goes, “KISS: Keep it simple, stupid.” Sometimes the simplest solution is the best. Just take a look at the New Mexico State University Housing and Residential Life (NMSU) Pinterest board, “Easy/Cheap Gifts for poor college students.”

On the board you’ll find links to all sorts of easy and inexpensive gifts that you can assemble yourself. Examples of gifts include: Read more