Making the Most Out of College

With students graduating with an average student loan debt of $35,200, according to CNN Money, it’s important to make the most out of a college education. There are many ways to increase marketable skills and networking opportunities besides getting an A on that biology final. Here are some tips to get the most bang for your buck while attending your chosen school.

  1. Get to know your professors – If your professor knows your name, you’re more likely to get the help you need to succeed in that class. But it also means that you have a resource of vast knowledge at your disposal! Make sure to ask questions, not just about the course material, but how to succeed in today’s job market. Next time they hear about an internship, guess who they’ll come to first? You! That’s the beauty of networking.
  2. Take leadership positions in your extracurricular activities – Whether you’re a part of the soccer team or chess club, take on the responsibility of secretary or president. It will give you plenty of marketable skills while still having fun! You can now add managing a club, balancing a budget, and providing conflict resolution to your resume.
  3. Join professional organizations – They provide large amounts of networking opportunities with fellow students, alumni, and business leaders in the community. Take advantage! It will help you experience life off of the college campus while adding to your portfolio.
  4. Take a job or internship that is related to your major – Employers will not care whether you had a 3.5 or 4.0 GPA; they’ll care whether or not you have practical experience! Try to find part-time jobs at a company that interests you and/or apply for an internship in your chosen field. The classroom will not teach you everything and these opportunities will help fill in the gaps. Plus, the sooner you intern in your major, the sooner you will find out if you truly love the future career you have planned! Many students change their majors after interning and finding out they can’t stand being behind a desk or faint at the sight of blood. It’s better to find out sooner than later!

Most of all enjoy the experience! College is full of fun, friendships, stress, and learning. Take advantage of the moment, your future self will thank you! If you need free guidance when it comes to applying for student loans and financial aid, contact our student loan guru, Brad Grissinger! He can be reached at (717) 795-0255 or bgrissinger@americhoice.org.