Every part of education is important

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Education is a crucial tool to have in a fight against ignorance. Understanding the unique outcomes of obtaining a degree in higher education can only be done with thorough research on the subject. To study degree courses in one’s emphasis area can take a fair amount of time investment to make sure all paths of information are covered. Picking a major can be a tough gig. Being told that one must decide what they want to do with their life before the age of twenty years old can seem slightly daunting. Aside from deciding what can seem like a forever career path, going to a college or university also comes at a heavy price. School is not cheap, but it can definitely be worth the investment.

Some might say it is a myth that a student has to decide their major within or even before their first year of college. Some people switch majors a lot and even go into an entirely different field than what they majored in. Life is a journey of self-discovery and so is the path of going into higher education to get a degree. It is all about the journey and the adventures. College is truly what you make it. For some, they didn’t enjoy it or claim that they didn’t learn anything, and for others college was the highlight of their life and led them on to continued successful journeys.

Success is an arbitrary word that means different things to different people. For those wanting to get a collegiate degree, the journey to obtaining that degree may end up being success to them. For others, success is having a family and maintaining close relationships with the people they love most. For some, success is simply being wealthy to your own standards. Becoming successful can start with education.

Education can simply be learning how to tie shoes and say your ABCs, and although those seem like small things, those are the foundations and building blocks of learning for someone going off to college someday. Every step of education counts along the way. Although in the younger years it can seem like it isn’t important, without the the basics, there cannot be experts. Experts in their fields all had to do some sort of foundational learning before they obtained their degrees. No part of education is unnecessary. Whether it’s learning multiplication facts or picking a college major and minor, all facets of education should be taken seriously. Learning can be fun with the right mind set. Learning to learn is a skill in itself. College is a place that not only fosters a higher education academic environment, it also teaches students to become critical thinkers. Although the material learned in college is necessary to complete the degree, the application of theory and critical thinking skills are what will determine whether or not a student becomes successful after graduation. Education is meant to help young minds grow into open-minded problem solvers ready to create innovative solutions to every day and complex situations.

The Strangest Courses You Could Study in 2019

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The world of education is constantly evolving. We now see the issues of gender, terrorism and technology entwining themselves into subjects that were once fairly straightforward, and the very mechanisms through which we learn have completely evolved with the advent of the internet. But the subjects available for us to study have also evolved. While once upon a time languages, cooking and music were about as exotic as a study path could get, today we are simply spoilt for choice. Unlike the regular online courses provided by universities or online academies, there are also strange courses available at these reputable academic establishments.

At Montclair State University, undergraduates can actually opt to study a course in ‘How to watch television’, while students at Yale University can choose ponder their ultimate end by studying a course in… Wait for it… ‘Death’. Yes, you heard me right.  Coursera, one of the largest online course providers in the world, now offers wannabe vets a course in ‘Canine Theriogenology for Dog Enthusiasts’ , as well as in ‘Dinosaur Paleobiology’ for those with a hankering for something a little more old school. Head to the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, and dog lovers can study a course in patternmaking for dog garments, if that strikes their fancy.

At the University of Georgia, students can actually score credit by studying Game of Thrones, and at the Oberlin Experimental College in Ohio (does the name give anything away?) one can get stuck into a course on Cryptozoology, a one-credit class dedicated to the study of animals whose existence have not yet been substantiated, from Big Foot to the Loch Ness Monster.

While we’re on the subject on the spooky, Michigan State University offers an online course that focuses on how humans behave during disasters, entitled ‘Surviving the Coming Zombie Apocalypse: Disasters, Catastrophes, and Human Behavior’, while Berkeley University in collaboration with online course provider edX teaches a free course in “Frankenstein; Or, The Modern Prometheus”, for those who want to dive deeper into what was considered the first ever science fiction novel. Speaking of sci-fi, ‘What if Harry Potter Is Real?’ is another surreal course on offer by the Appalachian State University. For real.

Onto the wonderful world that is food and students can choose to study the history of maple syrup at Alfred University, or take an online course in ‘The New Nordic Diet: From Gastronomy to Health’, offered by Coursera on a rolling basis. Harvard, in affiliation with edX also has a wonderfully unique class on offer to science whizzes entitled ‘Science & Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to Soft Matter Science’.

Move over French, Latin and Spanish – now young lingo lovers can now learn Elfish (the language of Lord of The Rings) at the University of Wisconsin, or learn Indian minority languages such as Assamese, Chokri or Bhili online for free via educational websites. And for those trendsetters – or deniers of – can get their kicks at Tufts University Experimental College where they can study a course in ‘Demystifying the Hipster’.

Paving the way as a studentprenuer

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It’s easy to see why so many people idolize entrepreneurs. Starting your own business is an act of creativity and business acumen, and when you’re in charge, you’ll be able to set your own schedule and choose your own hours—resulting in far more autonomy than any traditional job could give you. On top of that, if your idea is successful, you could become a self-made millionaire.

You’ve likely heard stories about successful business owners who started their enterprise while they were still enrolled in university, but is this a feasible approach for any student?

Understanding the Demands of a Business

If you’re taking the consideration seriously, you should spend time doing research to make sure your expectations are in line with reality. Starting and managing your own business is extremely demanding, and if you’re not prepared for those demands, it could end up costing you.

Start by taking a look at a checklist of all the things you’ll need to acquire and all the steps you’ll need to take to start a business. The process is likely more involved than you suspect. On top of that, to run a successful business, you’ll probably need to put in more than full-time hours to build it from the ground up, and face significant stress. That doesn’t mean starting a business in university is impossible, but you should be prepared for the challenges that await you.

The Advantages

Starting a business while you’re in university does come with some advantages:

  • Youth and risk tolerance. If you’re in your late teens or early twenties, you’ll have much higher risk tolerance than someone deeper in their career. If the company doesn’t work out, or if you lose money on the deal, you’ll have many years to build a new career from scratch and make up for the financial losses. If you wait too long to start a business, your risk tolerance will decrease.
  • Access to resources. Don’t neglect the sheer volume of resources you have access to as a university student. Depending on where you attend, you’ll likely have access to several buildings, rooms, and technologies that might otherwise be inaccessible to you. You can take advantage of these resources to flesh out your ideas, without spending more than what you’re already paying for tuition.
  • Access to expertise. Universities are full of experienced educators in all areas. Business professionals, marketing professionals, economists and technology leaders are all available and willing to help guide you with advice or direction. Talk to them about your idea, and they’ll likely be willing to help; you may not have this opportunity again.
  • If you’re enrolled in college full-time, you’ll have more flexibility than someone similar in a full-time position. As you get older, you’ll take on more career responsibilities, and may want to build a family—both of which will hinder the number of hours you can invest in a business.

The Disadvantages

However, there are also disadvantages to consider:

  • Time restrictions. The average college student spends about 17 hours a week studying, with even more time spent in lectures and campus activities. If you’re a part of any groups or organizations, or if you have a part-time job on top of that, you won’t have much additional time to plan or develop your business. Even worse, if your business distracts you from your studies, your grades could plummet.
  • While some businesses can be started with just a few hundred dollars, most cost tens of thousands. For a university student already strapped for cash and taking out loans, this can be problematic. Finding funding can be difficult, and if you take out a loan, it can make your financial life post-graduation even harder.
  • Lack of expertise. While there are some advantages to starting a business while you’re young, you also won’t have much business experience to fall back on. The most successful entrepreneurs tend to be ones who have led businesses in the past or have managed people in other roles. If you don’t have any expertise in this area, you’ll have a much lower chance of finding success.
  • Future development. How do you plan to develop the business in the future? For companies started in university, this is a tough question. If the business takes off, will you be forced to drop out and hope for continued success? What if you miss a critical opportunity because you kept the business idling too long?

So is it possible, or wise to start a business while you’re still attending classes? The short answer is that it’s certainly possible to start a business, and you’ll even have some natural advantages over your post-university counterparts, but there are too many downsides to make this a viable path for most students. If you’re truly interested in becoming a university entrepreneur and you have what you think is a solid idea, spend your time doing research before you flesh out a business plan. The more you understand about entrepreneurship, the better you’ll be able to make the decision for yourself.

5 Ways to Be Smart About Your Student Budget

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So you have a budget lined out, but it means nothing unless you stick to it. Make sure to be detailed and thorough when making a budget in college. There are tons of social events and temptations that can add up when looking at cost. Here are some ways to be smart about your trusty budget:

Document What You Spend Weekly and Monthly

To have an effective budget, you will need to stay organized in documenting your expenses. The best way to stay on track is to document what you spend weekly and monthly. This can best be done in an excel document. After you do this the first month, begin to make an outline allowing yourself a certain amount of money for every month/week. This is a great way to know your spending habits.

Figure Out What Expenses You Can Cut Out  

Once you have documented what you spend, look at areas you can cut down. Maybe you spent $20 on coffee this month. That expense adds up. Maybe limit yourself to one coffee at a coffee shop a week. Tracking your spending patterns makes it easier to see where you spend unnecessary money. This will allow you to budget more efficiently. Look at small expenses that aren’t necessary and limit them as much as possible. Some of these expenses might be monthly music or movie streaming services that aren’t entirely necessary. Cut down wherever you can for optimal saving benefits.

Grocery Shop Instead of Eating Out

Eating out is incredibly expensive, especially when you are on a budget. Limit yourself to only eating out on special occasions like birthdays and holidays. Learn some cheap recipes and have fun with cooking. You will be surprised with how much money you can save by shopping at a discount grocery store and cooking in place of eating out.

Invest your time into looking at credit card reviews. Find one that is good for college students and gives you cash back on buying groceries—this will cut down your food costs even further.

Build a Reward System Into Your Budget

Allow a fun allowance every month. If you are under budget, treat yourself to a fun night out or an extra coffee that week. This is a good way to reward yourself in small ways for being good at saving. A Starbucks coffee will taste that much better when you aren’t guilty about breaking your budget.

Even better, take into consideration reward options that don’t cost anything. Take a study break to go on a hike with friends. Pack a picnic and have lunch in a park. There are tons of fun things to do in college towns that cost nothing at all.

Your budget doesn’t have to be incredibly restricted in college. It is okay to slip up every once in awhile, as long as you compensate elsewhere in your budget. A great way to allow for more spending is to get a part time job on campus to help with expenses. Remember to be smart about money while not stressing yourself out too much.

Parenting Styles and Their Impact on Children

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Parenting is tough, challenging, and energy-depleting labor. It reveals who you are at your core, exposes the crutches you may use to support your personal shortcomings, and uncovers exactly where you put your trust, hope, and confidence.

Most people think they have an idea about the kind of parent they’ll be before they have children, but after you become a parent, you truly come face to face with your parenting style. As sobering as it is to recognize the substantial impact you have on a growing person’s future and character, it’s crucial to understand how your specific parenting style will set the tone for your son or daughter’s life.

The Five Major Parenting Styles … and Their Impact

Traditionally, researchers have focused on four major parenting styles. But this is an oversimplification. Ultimately, there are likely a dozen styles or more, and each parent gravitates to the method he or she sees as the best.

In this article, we’re going to explore five essential approaches and the effect they have on kids.

  1. Authoritarian

Start by looking at the notion of authoritarian parenting. Though it’s not as common today, this style of parenting was largely the norm through most of the 1960s.

It entails the belief that the parent is 100 percent in charge and that kids really shouldn’t be seen or heard. Children never should talk back, and parents — to a large degree — don’t have to take their child’s feelings into account.

For the most part, authoritarian parenting isn’t inherently abusive. But if implemented by the wrong person — especially one who encounters a confrontational child — it can become overtly aggressive.

An authoritarian parenting style generally creates children who are obedient and proficient. However, they also tend to rank lower than their peers in such categories as happiness, self-esteem, and social competence.

  1. Authoritative

Authoritative parenting has some of the same components and structure as the authoritarian parenting style, but it’s more relaxed and nurturing. With this style, parents focus on creating positive relationships with children by listening to and validating feelings.

There are rules and clear consequences, however. The goal is to prevent behavior-related problems before they start.

Children who are raised according to an authoritative style of parenting tend to be happy and successful. They’re typically even-keeled, good at making decisions, and able to evaluate risks on their own.

Such children may suffer from a lack of experience, though, as a result of not being exposed to mistakes and the consequences.

  1. Reflective

Reflective parenting, also known as free-range parenting, operates under the assumption that children do better in the long run when they’re given sufficient opportunity to solve problems and manage challenges on their own. Properly implemented, reflective parenting takes a child’s age, development, and abilities into account while still imposing boundaries and structure to keep children from making serious mistakes that may lead to significant physical or emotional harm.

Children of reflective parenting tend to grow up with a solid amount of experience and “street smarts.” They’re usually highly independent and know how to evaluate risk versus reward swiftly. While they’re resilient, such youngsters may have difficulty building strong interpersonal relationships and/or submitting to authority.

  1. Permissive

Permissive parenting seems to be the leading style of raising children in households that have millennial kids. This parenting style is characterized by possibly setting rules, but rarely enforcing them.

Consequences are rarely administered, with an apparent underlying belief that youngsters learn best with minimal interference from parents. Kids who grow up with permissive parents often struggle in school, exhibit behavioral problems, and show a lack of respect for authority.

They also face a higher risk of obesity, low self-esteem, and depression.

  1. Uninvolved

The fifth category is called uninvolved parenting. Whereas permissive parents are present, even overly so, the uninvolved parent exhibits nearly absolute uninterest in being a part of his or her child’s life.

No conversation takes place with regard to homework, feelings, or even where a child is going to be on a day-to-day basis. Uninvolved parents derive from either personality or necessary circumstances.

Some parents lack the mental capacity to engage their children and create proper structure. Others work multiple jobs and simply don’t have time to dedicate to good parenting.

Regardless of the reason a parent displays the uninvolved approach, the effects are disastrous for children. These kids are likely to show low self-esteem, suffer from depression, act out in order to earn attention, and exhibit other behavioral problems.

Set Your Children Up for Success

Of course, you can only do your best. That may sound like a cliché, but it’s true. We’re all just figuring out how to be parents on the job.

Some stuff works, while other tactics end in failure. Instead of getting obsessed with your past efforts, focus your energy on the present and how you can set up your son or daughter for a successful future.

In all likelihood, you’ll need to use a combination of several parenting styles to achieve the result you desire.