4 things college students need to know while still in college

College life is full of hopes and dreams… and misconceptions. There are some things to expect in campus life and some big surprises. Besides getting an education, you learn to live on your own, make your own decisions, get an internship in a field you enjoy, etc. For your academic and emotional health—as well as student success—here are four (out of many!) things you need to know while you’re still in college.

Step out of your comfort zone and follow our need to know tips. (Credit: glennstarkey.net)

Step out of your comfort zone and follow our need to know tips. (Credit: glennstarkey.net)

Need to know #1: There are no critical periods

In “10 things I wish somebody had told me about college before it was over,” posted on Huffington Post February 20, 2014, Michael Restiano at Tufts University said, “It’s dangerously easy to divide your collegiate life into a set of critical periods. Read more

Why college students should keep a journal while studying abroad

Keeping a journal while studying abroad is a great way to reminisce on your adventures. (Credit: Government of Thailand)

Keeping a journal while studying abroad is a great way to reminisce on your adventures. (Credit: Government of Thailand)

Ready for your semester away, and prepared for traveling abroad? In Ginny Gaylor’s January 10, 2014 post on Cengage Brain, she offered “Tips for traveling abroad—how to blend in,” so you know some of the dos and don’ts of foreign study. While you’re away, it’s a good idea to keep track of your experiences by writing a travel blog or diary. You may not expect to go into travel journalism after college, but there are plenty of reasons why you should keep a journal. Read on for some tips on recording your study abroad experience and some travel journal apps that will help you on the go.

Keeping a travel journal

Journaling may be a requirement of your study abroad program. It might be part of your grade. Or it may just be a way to keep memories of your experience for posterity. Lynn Hausman, a peer mentor for Academic Programs International (API), wrote her laments about not keeping a better journal during her time in Seville, Spain. In “Study abroad reflections – why you should keep a journal abroad,” posted on the API Blog March 1, 2011, Hausman wrote of her earnest intentions to record everything, and the way her efforts dropped off in her experience. Read more

Tips for traveling abroad—how to blend in.

By taking in the culture, you'll look less like a tourist when studying abroad.

By taking in the culture, you’ll look less like a tourist when studying abroad.

You’ve signed up for foreign study. While you are traveling abroad to broaden your experiences and learn, you also don’t want to stand out as a tourist. After all, part of the experience is the immersion into another culture. The more you look like you belong, the more you will probably get from the experience. So how to blend in and not scream to everyone within eyesight that you’re a tourist? Here are some tips on what to pack and how to act so you won’t get noticed.

Appearances matter

First things first—if you are walking around in a NY Yankees T-shirt and sneakers with a fanny pack on and clutching a camera, you will instantly be pegged as an American tourist. Avoid this trap by thinking ahead when you pack. James Feess blogs at The Savvy Backpacker with his suggestions in his August 4, 2013 post “Women’s European Fashion—Tips for Dressing like an European” and for guys, his August 5, 2013 post, “Fashion Advice: How to Avoid Looking Like An American Tourist in Europe.” Read more

Thanksgiving dinner on campus for international students

Credit: Michelle S. Kim, University Communications at UCIrvine

Credit: Michelle S. Kim, University Communications at UCIrvine

The Thanksgiving holiday is coming up soon. Classes get out, vacation week starts and everyone packs up to go home. But international students and those who live far away might not be able to travel home over the break. No fear. College life doesn’t end with the holiday. There are many ways to have a traditional American Thanksgiving dinner in the company of others: attend a campus sponsored dinner, visit a local family, cook dinner in your dorm rooms or make a restaurant reservation. Read more

Vacation packing list — Top tips on what to pack and what to cut

Travel Guides

Travel Guides (Photo credit: Vanessa (EY))

Summer vacation is as much a part of college life as the classes. Think warms sands at a beach, a hike in the mountains, or an adventure in a far-off land. Pack a good book, some music and a bottle of water, and that should do it. Well, you’ll need to think beyond the immediate needs of a relaxing vacation. Ask yourself: what are my activities, where will I be going, what will I be doing in the evening as well as in the daytime, am I prepared for an emergency? These are all important considerations when you create your vacation packing list. Read more

Packing tips if you are studying abroad

packing for a tripA semester or year abroad can be some pretty exciting stuff—new places, new faces and a chance to explore the world. But then you have to start thinking about what to take with you. Studying abroad should be about new experiences and learning new things, not about lugging everything you own along for the ride. Read on for some packing tips on what to take and what to leave behind. Read more

Top study abroad destinations: Where to go and what not to do

Study abroadOne of the things I was looking forward to most in college was studying abroad. I had heard about it in high school and knew that if I spent a little extra time working, applied for scholarships and took out a few extra loans, I’d too, be able to travel to a new country to study. It really is one of the great things about college. Here are some top study abroad destinations, some destinations to avoid and also some tips on what not to do while abroad. Read more

Why study abroad: Save money on international programs and graduate on time

Study abroad

Study abroad info (© Al Goldis/AP Images)

According to a recent report published by the Institute of International Education, more American students are studying abroad than ever before, however, overall numbers show that only 14 percent of college students as a whole participate in a study abroad program. In addition, findings show that the majority of students who choose to study abroad head to a European country, and male students are much less likely to take the study abroad leap. The study abroad sphere is widening though, and for those who are looking to take part, there is no time like the present to cash in on some good deals. Read more

International education: Tips and benefits of studying abroad

Study abroad information

Students seeking study abroad information

Congratulations! You’ve decided to expand your horizons and study in a different country. You’re ready to immerse yourself in a new culture, learn (non)traditional customs, speak a different language, and understand a totally new way of life. Not only is this an opportunity for you to become a world traveler, this is also a time for you to step outside of your comfort zone and experience another part of the world. But, before you embark on your international education, consider these tips — and get the most benefits of studying abroad. Read more

Where will you travel for summer break?

Study abroad

Study abroad (© Al Goldis/AP Images)

Summer break: A glorious two and a half months of freedom from the daily grind of your classes — or a chance to get ahead on the next semester. Whether you’re searching for a global education or just some good ol’ fashioned life experiences, there are many opportunities to consider for this summer break. Your taste for adventure may lead you to consider spending a semester at sea, or finding places to visit in Europe as a backpacker. You could put a few extra credits under your belt on a school sponsored study tour or see America on a low-budget college road trip. Read more