Tag Archives: advice for students

Life Hacks: How to Be A Grown Up


As we go through university, we learn a lot about ourselves, our parents, and our friends. One of the things I’ve always been looking for is a How-To guide on how to be a grown up. Like, the little things that your mom knows to do when you spill red wine on your carpet, or when you need to take Advil vs. Tylenol. Most of us look on Google for answers, but then there’s the bigger, anxiety-ridden, what-am-I-going-to-do-with-my-life questions that don’t exactly have an easy click-through solution.

I’m with you on this.

Since we’re both students, I figured I’d do some research into the matter, and present you with my findings. This is only the beginning. By the end of the next 4 months (I would say 4 weeks, but hey, I’m an undergrad = not too much spare time for blogging) I hope to leave you – students of the world – with some Life Hacks, some tips and tricks, and some overall ANXIETY-REDUCING ideas for how to cope with life in general.

That’s the plan. In the meantime, here ‘s a few I Wish I’d Thought of That tips from my personal life over the past 4 years to start you off:

Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for next week’s Life Hacks: How to Be A Grown Up. Leave a comment below if you’d like to join the discussion, I’m open for it if you are.

— Sarah Witiuk
P.S. You can follow me on twitter @SarahWitiuk and pinterest.

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No matter how big or soft or warm your bed is, you still have to get out of it. – Grace Slick

Quote of the Day

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The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one. – Mark Twain

Quote of the Day

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The beginning is the most important part of the work. – Plato

Quote of the Day

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Begin somewhere; you cannot build a reputation on what you intend to do. – Liz Smith

Quote of the Day

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Knowing what you want is the first step to getting it. – Louise Hart

Quote of the Day

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12 Creative Ways to find a Summer Job


Now that school is winding down, a lot of students are looking for summer jobs. You want to find the best job possible – one in your field of interest, that pays well, and gives you a ton of relevant experience…. but how? Continue reading

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Advice for Students


Try to keep your focus inward and don’t compare yourself to others. You are exactly where you should be.

Keep calm and Stay Positive

Source: Pinterest

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Four reasons finishing fourth year sucks


Post by Kieran Slobodin, Vice-President (University Affairs) at Queen’s University, Kingston.

Reblogged from: http://myams.org/news/ams-blog/four-reasons-finishing-fourth-year-sucks.aspx

April has always been a month of renewal.  The bright rays of the April sun are the first glimmer of hope after the doldrums of a dreary winter and turn our minds to rejuvenation.  April is when our parks fill up and our porches become occupied full time.  Yes, April is like a Star Wars sequel: A New Hope.

Unless you’re in fourth year, in which case it blows.

4. We’re still ‘technically’ students

On the last day of classes my house threw a party.  Thursday, April 5, last day of classes.  Last day of undergrad.  Perhaps the last day of classes for all time (screw you, Grad School!).  All that week facebook statuses were popping up with ‘last class!’ or ‘last seminar’ or ‘last Alfie’s night of my undergrad!’ Everyone was ecstatic and some people invested more time creating Facebook groups than they actually spent in class those final four days.  Like freed prisoners we celebrated that night.

The Reality?

Like four exams.  And two final papers.  And a film project.  Literally no one was done anything and the extended weekend of Easter only helped perpetuate that lie.  Like a dark hangover cloud fourth year students are starting to realize that they still have to buckle down one last time and study hard.  Unless you were blessed with a shortened semester you are still resigned to one last study blitz.  Perhaps you only wish to pass the course and only need 8% on that 40% weight final to get your pass.  But most likely you’re going to be faced with the same dilemma you were your other seven exam periods: you didn’t go to class and you have no idea what the course is about.

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When the hell did I sign for Ayn Rand and Postmodern Epistomology: A Comparative Review?! Photo credit: QuickMeme.

3. Bucket Lists

Bucket lists as a concept were first perpetuated by Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson as a way to cheat death.  Or make the most out of life. One of those.  A bucket list as portrayed in the movie is essentially just a macabre wish list.  However, ever since the Bucket List, arguably Morgan Freeman’s worst movie after Evan Almighty, there has not been a more tired cliché for graduating students.

Groosfrabas. Photo credit: Blogspot.

Bucket lists symbolize a last push by panicking students to capture every memory they can of university.  The thought is that with a year of dedicated effort you can achieve in your final year what you failed to do in your first three.

The Reality?

There’s a reason you never did any of your bucket list in the first 75% of your undergraduate career.  Whether it’s because your list is too challenging or too much work, you quickly realize that trying to capture stave off your inevitable nostalgia is sadder than Madonna trying to stay relevant.

The problem is when you try and cram in three years of missed opportunity you forget what makes the stuff you DID do fun.  The point of the university experiences that typically wind up on bucket lists is the story behind the accomplishment.  When you reduce those stories down to a checklist they tend to lose all meaning.

Continue reading this story here…

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Conference Gone Bad


Apologies for the radio silence! Been much busier than expected with conferences, gigs and flying back home for a few weeks, and I have to admit I did forget to write last week. I am ashamed.

So while I was busy finishing assignments and then fulfilling the rock’n’roll part of my personal blurb on this blog (actually ran into one of the speakers from the Unconventional Women conference in a rock bar in London!), I also went to another conference. This time it was Business 2012, and I have to say it was quite an experience. And not all good.

Speed Networking. Yay or nay?

Getting past the absolutely and unforgivably poor organisation of the event – we didn’t get to see Sir Richard Branson speak because they “couldn’t disclose the information” about which speakers were on & when! Srsly, what the eff? – the seminars and workshops we attended were quite surprising. In fact, my friend and I came to the conclusion that, with the exception of the seminars on trademarks and mobile internet, we could’ve gotten up on the spot and taught the seminars better than the speakers.

Now you might be thinking I’m crawling up my own rear end here, but it was very shocking how unprepared and unprofessional some of the speakers were. I did not come to sit through a seminar on the commercial use of twitter being taught by some middle aged guy who gets up and starts off with “Well I’m actually really bad with social media and some kid I have working for me actually does it all.” Why are you here giving your “advice” then?

This conference was really an example of making it too broad and in turn making a big mess of an event. To top it off the seminars were overbooked so we had to sit on the floor, and The O2, where the conference was being held, was freezing cold.

But perhaps most notably,

 The best and most informative seminar was the one given by one of the youngest speakers there.

Just something to think about. And comment on below.

Stay cool,

Marta

P.S. The saving grace for the last day was the British Music Experience museum of popular music which is in the same building, and which I HIGHLY recommend you visit if you can!

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Un-Covention: Women in Music and Media, Part 2


As some of you may have noticed if you saw last week’s post, I took a litttle trip to Manchester last weekend. The following Monday I wrote a post about it which covered the gender-related conclusions, this week I want to talk more about why it’s important to go to these things whenever you can.

When I went to this conference, I didn’t really know what to expect or even how formal or informal it’s going to be. I went there with the expectation to learn something about the state of the music and media industries from the women that are actually in the thick of it, and at the same time see what they’re like and if I ever enter any of these arenas, what are the people I would likely be working for like. And I went to see if I could gather any information that would be useful for my dissertation on live music and heavy metal.

Turns out the conference was so relaxed you could easily approach the speakers after each panel, a golden opportunity for anyone who, like me, was looking to build contacts. It took some courage and the best opening lines I could muster to do it, but I went up to them. I introduced myself, I commented on the points made in the panel, I took and interest in their work. And I walked away with not one, but two interview arrangements for my dissertation research. We are now also connected through various social media, therefore I am on their radar for future opportunities and have a huge edge against most of the competition if I do apply for a job with any of them, simply because they’ve met me before.

Competitions are good, you get prizes and pretty CV material. But conferences give you the chance to make your presence known among the industry community, which WILL give you an edge and might even bring the job to you.

It’s time to put that natural charm to good use!

Stay cool,

Marta

P.S.: Next weekend I’ll be attending another conference in London which lasts until Tuesday so the post should be out later the following week, but the delay should be well worth it.

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Airbus – Fly Your Ideas Challenge


By Arush Chandna

 

The Airbus-Fly Your Ideas Challenge was one of the most enriching experiences of my life. Thanks to this competition, I got to work on a really cool idea, with two very intellectual peers under the guidance of a really inspirational and experienced mentor.

 

Since a very young age, I have possessed a penchant for aviation. One day, as I was browsing through StudentEvents, I saw that Airbus was organizing an event for students. I was elated. I knew I had to do this.I got in touch with two of my friends, both aviation enthusiasts like me and we decided to start-off.

 

We were working together on such a project for the first time and I believe that the instant cohesion of our team was one of the main reasons we made it to the semi-finals of the event. This was also the first time that I got to work under a senior employee from the industry for a competition.Our team’s mentor, a highly experienced Airbus employee not only came across as an excellent and inspirational guide, but also as a model professional.

 

We were absolutely amazed by his ability of pinpointing the loopholes of our 5000-word report and presenting them in a very precise, yet articulate and convincing manner. By the end of the 9 and half months over which the competition spanned, I gained memories that would last a lifetime. What had actually started out as a task to build my resume actually turned into something much more than just that.

 

From our initial brainstorming sessions to eagerly awaiting our mentors feedback every time we sent him a draft of our proposal, I believe that the lessons that I have learnt from each phase of this competition will go a long way with helping me in my professional life.

 

 

 

 

 

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The Power of Schmoozing


A few weeks back I was contacted by a lady from my university who wanted to hire me to photograph classes and events in their department for new brochures and website content. She found out about my photography (a hobby) after I mentioned it to a colleague of hers at a social event in my department.

I like taking photos...and silly hair. (© Marta Svetek 2012)

This isn’t some kind of high paying job. It isn’t a milestone in my career. I don’t even want to make a career out of photography. I am definitely not the best photographer at our university. I am also not the only one who would even be willing to do this kind of job for free. But I got the offer simply through making a good enough impression to make that person recommend me to someone looking for someone with my skill set.

That lady doesn’t have the time to review the entire photography talent pool of the university and she obviously trusts the opinion of her colleague who thinks I am reliable and generally someone she can trust to get the job done well. And in turn I get to boost my creative CV and portfolio with an actual paying job.

This little anecdote is hardly groundbreaking in itself but it shows how important socialising and networking is.

Studying hard is important, but don’t forget that it’s people that hire you and people you work with, and you need to show them you’re the person they want to work with!

A smile goes a long way! (© 2011 Toastmasters International)

Be nice, compliment people, take an interest in whoever you’re talking to. Tead up on the latest news, talk about your interests/hobbies. You’ll find people will be much more willing to talk to you if you can have a conversation about something OTHER than work! Having a hobby in common with someone or generally just a very interesting one will definitely make them remember you.

So go to those employer presentations, conferences, sponsored events, alumni events, basically any kind of social events and work on your networking and social skills. You might not meet the CEO right away but you may meet someone he/she knows that will refer you to them when you apply for the job.

And above all else, don’t forget to SMILE! No one wants to talk to a grump, or the guy that takes himself too seriously.

Happy schmoozing!

Much love,

Marta

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Martholio !

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My Third Year Exchange


By Amy Bajurny (Queen’s University, Canada)

My experience abroad drastically changed my outlook as an individual, a Canadian and an academic.  My exchange experience at The University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia gave me the opportunity to travel and see world-renowned sites, meet inspirational people from dozens of countries, study at a new post-secondary institution, and explore a foreign lifestyle.  I can confirm that my character has developed for the better, into a self-assured, mature, ambitious Queen’s student; one who is willing to discover, learn from, meet, and share with anyone, anywhere. 

My exchange experience also allowed me to find a balance in my life as a scholar, and adult.  I was able to bridge the gap I formerly had in my mind as to where I would end up after graduation. From being immersed in a foreign, thriving city, I was able to better assess my traits and qualifications, understanding what I could see myself doing as a Stage and Screen graduate, in a large world, full of opportunities.

I believe Australia was the perfect country to help me find my place and purpose in society because I was exposed to so many new career ideas.  For example, I had the opportunity to attend the largest short film festival in the world, TROP Festival.  This helped me realize that I would love to become involved in the event planning of film festivals.  Consequently, I have been inspired to apply to event planning internships internationally, and throughout Canada.

My exchange really motivated me to take more risks in life and put myself out there.  With the encouragement and support of the International Programs office at Queen’s University, I was able to take a leap — and I landed on my feet.  My exchange was a crucial period of growth and reward, surely a life-changing adventure I am very thankful for and will never forget.

Editor’s Note: Have you ever studied abroad? Do you have experiences to share? If you’d be interested in writing tips for students please contact us at ambassadors@studentevents.com

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Meet Arush…


Position: Head Ambassador in India

Study Field: Bachelor in Engineering

Uni: Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT), India

Recently, it dawned upon me that I have just passed the halfway mark of my Bachelors course. This thought further instigated a session of self-reflection – a look back at all the memories, learning and occurrences that have shaped the most memorable two-and-a-half years of my life so far.

One thing that I noticed was that all these experiences had a common link that was instrumental in their realization – student events. Be it the competitions that have acted as an avenue to bridge the gap between the theoretical notions of my curriculum with relevant practicality or the conferences at which I have so often been left awe-inspired, it is without a shadow of doubt that I can affirm the positive contribution of student events in my undergraduate odyssey thus far.

“All these experiences had a common link… student events.”

Also, I have realized that some of the most inspiring moments in your life come through some of the most unexpected avenues. For example, it was at a conference on ‘sustainable lifestyles’ that I met an academic who enlightened me about this really cool concept called ‘design thinking’; a topic that I am now considering for my thesis. So next time you get the opportunity to get involved in a conference, competition or seminar, make sure that you go for it!

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“…And you must be creative.”


Here’s a question:

How many times have you looked at listings for jobs or internships or competitions or whatever else from the “I’m doing something with my life” basket that has stated being “creative” as a requirement, and actually understood what that meant?

My face after reading the 300th infuriatingly vague job description.

If you actually tried to answer the question I’m betting about 99% of you choked on your own mental monologue at least once in the first few minutes. Many of you will go somewhere along the route of “it depends on the situation”.

And you’re right: it does depend on the situation/field/employer. But even more importantly:

Most of the time, employers don’t even know themselves.

Creativity has become one of business’ favourite buzz words. It takes the mind away from a dry, old-fashioned perception of something into a hip, fun, “anything is possible” world of both unprecedented achievement and caring. It implies personal development and an almost romantic view of what lies ahead. And it is directly linked to feelings of bitter disillusionment.

It is without much doubt one of the most devalued words in our dictionaries but nevertheless, it still represents something crucial to all of us – it represents pushing yourself to think and act beyond your own limits. Creativity, originality, and ingenuity. It reminds us to not become complacent in our routine, but to “think outside the box”.

And that’s really what employers in any situation are looking for when they say they are looking for someone “creative”. They are looking for the individuals who are open-minded and motivated enough not to become complacent in their work routine, and see and take advantage of the opportunities that can lead to great things.

And I think that’s a little something we all can write on a post-it and stick on our desks.

Have a great week!

Much love,

Marta

P.S. Follow me on Twitter @Martholio for more musings, event info and general silliness!

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They make Drano for that, don’t they?


The deadline looms nearer and nearer and here I am, sitting in front of the computer, staring at my screen with an expression that could be described as void with a subtle hint of desperation. Indeed, this has been a ritual for a number of days now as I attempt to offer a work of my great knowledge of intellectual property law to the scrutiny of the panel of professors and external markers, but cannot produce said work in the required physical form.

In other words, I’ve got an essay due and I just can’t squeeze the words out of my brain. Your faithful blogger, my friends, is suffering from writer’s block.

In fact, I’m suffering such writer’s block I decided to write about it because I couldn’t think of anything else to write about this week.

Me, most of the day.

My usual remedy is to go do something completely unrelated for a few hours and come back with a fresher mind, in the hope that I’ll see things from a better (more writable) perspective. This time it turned into spending hours on Facebook, YouTube, 9GAG and BBC iPlayer. And driving my friends nuts with floods of posts.

Other times I try brainstorming ideas, concepts or characteristics of/around the issues I’m supposed to discuss. Usually this gives me at least a couple of ideas I can begin expanding on. This time, nothing. I can only hope to get out of this funk and actually write something before the deadline.

So now I ask you, my darling readers. What do you do when you have writer’s block? Post your suggestions in the comments below!

Much love,

Martholio

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Quote of the Day


“Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.”
– Henry Ford
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4 Reasons to Attend a Student Event this Year


You’re in college, enjoying the best years of your life – it’s all about hanging out with your friends, doing some studying and mostly having a lot of fun. Find out how participating in a student competition, conference, or seminar NOW will help your essays write themselves… Continue reading

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